Chapter 1’s

As a graduate student, I am expected to teach undergraduate courses. So far I have taught Child Development and Mystery, Murder, and Madness (which is basically a criminal behavior class). In my program, upper level graduate students are required to teach 2 courses each semester, so by the end of the program, we have A LOT of experience teaching at the college level.

So far, I have taught 4 sections of undergraduate courses. Teaching Child Development is well within my area of expertise, but Mystery, Murder, and Madness is pretty outside of my wheelhouse. Through these experiences, combined with my own coursework, I have come to realize something interesting…the first chapter of every textbook I have ever used is essentially pointless.

Chapter 1’s are meant for tackling breadth, not depth. They are geared toward reaching a wide audience and capturing the attention of people from different backgrounds. And when you’re teaching to a room full of psychology majors who have taken so many different psychology classes, they could not possibly care less about chapter 1.

So, I propose a solution for teachers everywhere… let’s all just skip chapter 1! Now, this might not be applicable to all students at every level, but for upper level students who are taking courses within their major, is there really a need to teach about chapter 1?

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