Differences in teaching techniques concern students

While some students feel that consistency among teachers would better their education, teachers argue that their independence is the very thing that helps students to succeed.

IB Analysis and Approaches (A&A) SL 1 teachers assign the same tests, but quizzes may vary because each teacher has the freedom to make their own questions.

“[IB students] should be able to handle any question as long as it’s testing the same concepts,” A&A teacher Abeer El-Baz said.

She says although students may think quizzes are especially difficult, it may just be the novelty of the information.
El-Baz said neither she nor A&A teacher Mr. Altschuler “put something that is extremely hard on the quiz, we don’t do that.”

Sophomore and A&A student Claire Anderson said she feels content with both classes.

“You can understand a topic from a different perspective as someone who has a different teacher. But the courses are consistent between different teachers,” Anderson said.

She understands the importance for teachers to provide the same resources and assignments.

“I think it’s really important,” Anderson continued. “If one teacher provides different resources, then that class could either have an advantage or disadvantage.”

Sophomore Chloe Kim agreed with Anderson.

“As a student it’s really annoying when teachers teach you different things because I’ve been on both sides of the spectrum where I have the better teacher, and I see my friend struggling, and I’ve also been on the side where I have the harder teacher and I’m struggling,” Kim said. “It’s just frustrating all around.”

IB History of the Americas (HOA) teacher, Kevin Curtin, said he believes teachers cannot teach in the exact same manner.

“It’s not possible without severely restricting teacher autonomy,” Curtin said.

Similar to A&A, IB HOA teachers give different assignments, but ultimately have the same tests at the end of the unit.

“As educators, we know what the end target is,” Curtin said. “We have the freedom within each unit to get our students to the same point.”

Junior and HOA student Rhea Patel believes classes should operate the same way.

“I think it’s pretty important,” she said, “[That] content knowledge is kind of the same throughout the whole class.”
However, sophomore and A&A student Kian Mesforush understands the teachers’ perspectives.

“I think they should all be equal, but teaching styles differ,” he said. “So obviously, one teacher might push you harder than another one. And that’s just kind of how it works out.”