There is a wide amount of latitude given to academic freedom in a classroom but destruction of a student’s computer falls a bit outside of the norm. For Professor Justin Leroux, of the HEC Montreal (Institute of Applied Economics), however, it appears part of the lesson plan — though the question is whether this was staged or serious.
Supposedly, this encounter occurred after a student peppered Leroux with repetitive questions and challenges over the boring character of his style. This may fall into the category of “too good to be true.” There are indications that this was an April Fool’s joke. If so, it is pretty funny, though some might be put off the the violent element. On the first day of class, I also play a trick on my students by asking a plant to translate Latin and when he does not, I call on a second plant who flawlessly translates the Latin. I then throw the first student out of the class. It is cheaper than destroying a computer each term. There have been a couple of lawsuit over fake gun-touting intruders or even a faux shooting in class.
Ironically, faculty across the country have been debating the impact of computers on classrooms. At my law school, there was a serious effort to ban computers, now used by every law student in class. The feeling among many is that students have become little more than stenographers and that they participate less in class discussions. That appears to be true from my own experience, though I opposed the ban.
For the video, click here