I would appreciate input on improving the course. Please provide input on the following issues and any others you might have. This post will not be discussed in lecture.
Species. Do you care what species are used as examples of various topics? Would you prefer to hear more or less about the various possibilities: peas, maize, Arabidopsis, tomato, petunia, fly, worm, e coli, yeast, human, mouse, others?
YouTube. One approach towards teaching is to lecture for no more than 12 minutes at a time and break the class up into smaller groups. My experience is that students don't like the group thing. Do you? What do you think of having one or two movie clips on the techniques, history, etc.. of the relevant areas that may or may not lead to discussion? Does it seems like the gym teacher that always shows movies in health class or is it a worth while break and a good way to learn?
Textbook. I will stick with the primary literature open book format next spring. Should I continue NOT to recommend a textbook? Is the supplemental reading useful?
Papers. Last year I required two papers based on a selection from the primary literature of the students liking. While you did not experience this format for this class in particular, you are certainly familiar with writing papers. Do you think this would add to the course?
Work load. Is the time required for three exams, twelve blogs, and no final consistent with your other courses?
Course level. Since this is a 500 level course I had/have high expectations. The class is comprised of juniors, seniors, and graduate students. Incidentally, as a whole juniors seem no less prepared to handle the course than seniors. Do you pay much attention to course number? Is it meaningful? Would you like to see the university offer more genetics course like Epigenetics, Quantitative genetics, Animal and Plant Breeding, or Human Genetics.
Topics. Are there any topics you would have likes to explore more or less?