Archive for May 23rd, 2008

Egyptian vs. Iraqi Professors

I am perplexed. the following question has been occupying my mind for the previous weeks. Currently at as a first year medical students in the second semester, I am taught by 3 Iraqi doctors, and 2 Egyptian doctors. The method of teaching of the 2 groups is 180 degrees different.

Iraqi doctors explain only using PowerPoint presentations without any additional papers explaining the material. On the contrary, Egyptian doctors give, in addition to PowerPoint presentations, hand-outs explaining whatever was explained in the lecture. As a result, I don’t have a problem when studying for a subject taught by an Egyptian doctor because I already have the material which I know, 100%, that questions would come from. While in subjects taught by the lovely Iraqis, we are constantly told: “The power Point slides are not enough. You must study on the books which I referred to.” You can’t imagine how this simple answer could cause hardship while studying books containing many pages which most of which are not necessarily in our level as first year students.

“When I was a students like you,” Dr. Hani Azawi said on anatomy lecture on Tuesday (I know hundred 100% that he talked about ‘Abdominal Aorta’, I can’t be sure of any other thing until I listen to the recording.), “I used to skip lectures with doctors who used to give us papers. There is no learning if you don’t search and find the information yourself.” Is it logical?! To be neutral, his point of view is some what logical. However, it needs a lot of hard work.

Body Language

“Shaking the head from side to side to indicate ‘no’ or negation is also universal and may well be a gesture that is learned in infancy. When a baby has had enough milk, he turns his head from side to side to reject his mother’s breast. When the young child has had enough to eat, he shakes his head from side to side to stop his parent’s attempt to spoon feed him and in this way he quickly learns to use the head shaking gesture to show disagreement or a negative attitude.”

“Research in the field of linguistics has shown that there is a direct relationship between the amount of status, power or prestige a person commands and that person’s range of vocabulary. In other words, the higher up the social or management ladder a person is, the better able he is to communicate in words and phrases. Non-verbal research has revealed a correlation between a person’s command of the spoken word and the amount of gesticulation that that person uses to communicate his or her message. This means that a person’s status, power or prestige is also directly related to the number of gestures or body movements he uses. The person at the top end of the social or management scale can use his range of words to communicate his meaning, whereas the less educated or unskilled person will rely more on gestures than words to communicate.”

I understand this portion well. That is, an employee would have no objection on the orders of his boss no matter how injustice they might be. His words won’t surely reflect his dissatisfaction, but his gestures will expose him. Surely the manager won’t care about interpreting them.

[Update 23.05.2008: Oh you little psychological analyzer! A good shot, though. You need to work better on your logic. ]