With short time scales for students to submit their work, we must be able to offer tutorial time when the students require it and be able to respond quickly to questions asked. My status as a ‘part timer’ has implications for my availability. So, with that in mind, as well as face to face tutorials I promised I would check my emails everyday whether in work or not and would be happy to receive home phone calls. I knew that only a few students would probably need to take advantage of this - but for them it could be crucial to have the help when they needed it.
In the event I responded to quite a few emails but received only one phone call at home, from a male student. At the time of the call I was all soaped up, lying in my bath, as a precursor to going out for the day. “Is it a convenient time to call?” he asked. I thought about this. As I needed to go out immediately afterwards I said that it was probably as good as any, so to go ahead. He did. My first ever bath tutorial!
I think we were on the phone for around 15 minutes. I realise now there is an art to it. Trying to move around to keep warm under the water without making tell tale splashing noises, at the same time as talking seriously about academic matters is not easy. In this case, talking to a student who I knew would be horrified to think he was present at such a private moment in his tutor’s bathroom.
However, it was all worth- while - he passed the assignment!