Broken brains and lecture chicken

1.  Well, the good news is, I passed Embryology!  Granted, only by like 4%, but at least that’s before the application of an emergency “oh crap, everyone’s gonna fail” curve.*

2.  The bad news is we had our first game of Lecture Chicken today.  If you’re not familiar, due to the fact that I just now made it up, Lecture Chicken is a dilemma you face when a lecturer shows no sign of knowing or caring that he’s over time.  If you leave soon after the clock strikes “time’s up”, it can look unclassy.  You want to shoot for the sweet spot of respectfulness where it’s so overtime that you look totally justified in having to duck out.

But if you wait too long,  a whole crowd of people will be giving up at the same time as you, and if 1/5 of the class just gets up and leaves, then it’s too noticeable and we all look like jerks.

I didn’t even get the option of leaving, because I was sitting in the middle of a row, surrounded by Laptop People.   The sad thing was the lecturer wasn’t even giving a testable lecture.  He was from a non-medical, peripherally-related department of the school, attempting to get people excited about doing research there.

Unfortunately, nobody I’ve talked to knew what he was talking about.  (The best assay to visualize CDe3b/a1/d’s inhibition of Ptrdx-a3?  The epigenetics of Austria?  A slideshow on “120 ways to fit 3 graphs on a single slide’?)  I’ve never seen anyone hurt their own cause so catastrophically.

I would say I felt bad for him, but the truth is, there probably was somebody in our class who understood it and was inspired to do research with them.  Granted, it was probably an MD/PhD student, but whoever it was, they’re smarter than me, and I sure can’t blame him for trying to self-select for that.

3. Woman is Literally Fearless.  Brains are cool.  Brains with non-functional amygdalas are cooler.

* Actually, don’t ask me why they curved it – they said it was because we all scored so low, but the class average was 82%.  I just… I don’t even know how that’s possible.  Crazy bimodal distribution?  Right shift with a long tail?  Magic?

4 thoughts on “Broken brains and lecture chicken

  1. I like the term lecture chicken. 🙂 Our profs go over on a semi-regular basis. We tend to handle it by 1) Waiting until people get really fed up because a number of professors in a given day have gone over time, effectively cutting out almost all of our free time to eat/go to the bathroom/deal with the entire rest of our lives that we don’t have time to attend to/just not think for a few minutes. 2) The class presidents contacting the admin to complain. 3) Admin contacting the profs to tell them to stop it. 4) Profs going over anyway. 5) People getting fed up and class presidents (or other bold people) raising a hand at a few minutes past and letting them know class is over. This full cycle takes a few weeks.

    Lather, rinse, repeat, at least a few times a year.

  2. haha, got to love Emergency curves. Last year, when it was pure Pass/Fail, the Pass percentage got moved down a few times to make it so that even a few people didn’t pass (I don’t think it ever got moved by more than like, 5% though. If you score a 45% when the pass is supposed to be 70%, you’re just out of luck).

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