July 9, 2000, by Teaching at Nottingham

Gaining class attention in a lecture theatre

Video >>
Low level noise as students talk in the lecture theatre.

Prof Liz Sockett: “The best thing I ever learned on a teaching course was not to stand up and say ‘lets be quiet and make a start’. I just stand at the front and when they quieten down I start lecturing. They make themselves quieten down because they want to hear what it’s going to be. So you don’t have this kind of control issue where you are trying to shout over them.

“If somebody really talks, which people always will in a big class, I usually stop talking, as we did in the 2nd lecture, and eventually everyone is looking at them and I usually just wave and carry on.

“People don’t really talk a lot in my classes. I have a thing about mobile phones at the start of every lecture and people have a whole variety of theories as to why bacteria don’t like mobile phones, but it is a fun way of asking them not to have their mobile on.”

Slide showing a picture of a bacterium looking unhappy about mobile phone noise.

Liz Sockett
School of Biology

Liz is lecturing on Microbiology (module code C41105) to approximately 150 first year students in a QMC lecture theatre. Produced July 2004.
This video was originally published as part of PESL’s Teaching at Nottingham collection.

Posted in Lectures