The sense of entitlement in some of these older students may be even stronger because they’ve been told over and over again by the administration how wonderful they are for making such sacrifices of time (and money) for their educations. Thus just showing up for class once a week warrants at least a C, and if they actually crack open a book or do some homework, God help the professor who doesn’t respond with a B. If we give them the grades they actually earn, why they (and their money) might not return next semester. Students in this program pay full price for their credits, so it is a cash cow for the rest of college, which has to offer lots of scholarship money to the traditional undergraduates to get them to come at all. In fact, when I attended my first faculty meeting several years ago, one of the deans actually made the comparison between our students and customers – “It’s been shown that one unhappy customer will tell at least ten other people about their bad experience …..yada, yada yada” You’ve probably heard it before.
There’s a mysterious attitude shift that occurs in a lot of people the minute they become “students,” young or old, and it’s not pretty.