Monday, November 17, 2008

Like... like... NO!

I have a personal pet peeve that is exacerbated when meeting with students afflicted by limited vocabularies - involving the use of the word "like" as a filler phrase while the brain considers other rhetorical options for communication. Translation? I like hate it like when, like, people like, overuse the word like, like, ya know?

I met with a student today who used like over 50 times in 2-3 minutes. It was distracting from what she was trying to say - with that teeny-bopper phrase assaulting the neurons in my brain (specifically, the ones located around my ears, behind the ones that contain my ability to smell out chocolate from over 100 feet away). Although I was tempted to pull out a piece of paper and start a tally, I decided that would not be conducive to supporting this individual as she needed in the moment. Somehow, I do not think telling her "It's not your fault, you didn't deserve this, but you DO have a serious vocabulary impairment that is 100% your fault - and I feel blonder having spent 30 minutes with you" -- I just don't think that's going to facilitate trust or emotional recovery. 

When I become a professor, I am going to keep track during oral presentations that I assign. I will allow a person 10 inappropriate uses of the word "like" before beginning to deduct points for each additional infraction. I will then give them a score based on the presentation and a second score that is reduced by the total number of "like" offenses. The final grade? Will be an average of these two scores. I will allow the student a chance to correct him or herself - if the student can master their second oral presentation without surpassing their allowance of "like" - then they may have the original grade before the "like factor" was added into the equation. If not... perhaps they will call me a bitch, but they will learn a lesson in proper communication! 

Like, like, oh my god, like Oh Mm Gee! for like realz yo? Like, she's like, a total like bitch!

No comments: