BERKELEY, Calif. — Following the departure of instructors Kelli Talaska and Katrin Wehrheim from Math 54 (Linear Algebra & Differential Equations), the UC Berkeley math department has decided to try out an innovative new course curriculum in which no one teaches the class.
“At Berkeley, we’re not afraid to disrupt the status quo and implement never-before-seen pedagogical approaches that meet the challenges of the 21st century,” said Mathematics Department Chair Michael Hutchings in an interview last Friday. “Rather than rely on the boring, tried-and-true method of having someone teach the course, we will be using state-of-the-art technology [i.e. the printing press] to create interactive self-directed learning modules [i.e. textbooks] that students will be able to consume [i.e. read] at their own pace. We will be charging $49.95 plus tax for these modules and—what? No, why in the world would we be reducing tuition?”
Some students have commended the experimental approach as a bold step in the right direction.
“Berkeley students LOOOOOVE to complain about ‘classes being too big’ and ‘office hours being too full’ and ‘there not being any professors to teach the course’ but in my humble opinion if you wanted hand-holding you shouldn’t have come to UC Berkeley,” said an Anonymous Ed poster who has somehow managed to transform their severe lack of instructional support into a superiority complex. “The new instruction-free curriculum is PERFECT for motivated students like me who actually deserve to be here and don’t need silly things like ‘teachers’ to learn. That’s right; I pay tens of thousands of dollars each year to buy textbooks and teach myself the material. Get on my level, scrubs.”
Other students, however, question whether the new curriculum is adequate.
“Honestly, I don’t see the difference between the new curriculum and what I was doing before,” said Math 54 student Hannah Burrells. “It was impossible for me to understand anything going on in lecture so I made do by watching Paulin’s course captures and looking up homework answers on Chegg. I guess that’s what I’ll be doing for the rest of the semester?”
At press time, the Haas School of Business announced that they would also be updating their course curricula; starting in Spring 2023, all business courses will be absolutely free of educational value.