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Student Information Sheets

For every new term, I like to have my students do a student information sheet to help me get to know them and learn how I may best teach them. Of course, a single survey-like activity cannot get all that I would want to get. Students at the beginning of a course are tentative, shy and hence really don't reveal themselves to my liking.

It was the same with me as a student, I know.

So, I do this in phases. The following description is my first phase.

Phase 1 "Student Information Questionnaire"

General info:
name, nickname, phone number, email, personal website & month and day you were born

Educational/Personal Background:
what languages do you speak?
how many years have you been in the U.S.?
if you studied in a university, what was your major?
what are your future career goals/plans?

what do you think is the best way to study in an American universtiy?
what was one thing a favorite teacher did?

what is one thing that makes you laugh?
what makes you angry?
if you could have the personal service of one of the following servants for one year what would you choose?
a) a personal masseuse
b) a personal chef to cook all your meals
c) a personal chauffeur

that's it.

In the past I have made different variations on the above-sometimes I change or add or omit questions that match a particular global characteristic of the group I am teaching.

What kinds of 'info sheets' do you use? are some of the responses from my TEFL students:

Favorite Teacher...
Gave little homework and no test, quizzes or exams!
Encouragement to challenge for something
dancing in front of students to make them laugh
she made me interested in English

The best way to study at an American university...
To meet people and speak as much as I can
Be myself
To make a lot of friends and to study together
To be active and don't be afraid of saying something
No more Korean, just speak in English when I hang out with my friends, which means just focus on English
Especially in California, we could meet different races and ethnicities so being active will be a beneficial way to learn diversity in the American university
to hang out with friend who speak English and checking lots of books in the library to read
To meet people from other countries...

Just to sample a few.