I just called the college to find out about student numbers and they told me that only five people have registered for the Ethics course. They need a minimum of 45 and the course starts in a week (and Monday the 29th is a holiday, so they won’t be registering students then). I just called and left a message with the dean, since he will be making the decision to cancel.
Part of the problem is that I just noticed that they are also offering the exact same course, but online. Now if I were a student, probably working during the summer, I would rather take an online version than a class version, especially since my class will be meeting from 10:30-1, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday for five weeks. The other problem is that their winter term goes right up until this Friday, and they schedule final exams on Saturday the 27th. Not too many students will want to start right up on an accelerated course in philosophy just after finishing.
The other course is Epic Literature will probably go ahead. So far it has 23 people signed up and it doesn’t start until close to the end of June. They’ve asked me to teach it again in the Fall, but I don’t think I am going to. The college is close to a 2.5 hour trip on public transportation, which means 5 hours a day on the train/bus to teach a two hour course. That’s what I’ll be doing now in June if the numbers go up. The course will start at 8:15, which means I’ll need to catch MUNI (underground subway) around 5:30 to get BART (the above-ground train) to catch the 7:30 bus that will take me to the college. If I had more that one class to teach, then I could justify it.
I’ve also just spent the last three weeks doing nothing but reading up on ethical theories and preparing 50 hours of lectures for those five weeks. This meant I haven’t done any of my own research. Which will make it more difficult for me to get a permanent job. Ugh. 🙂