Professor Tops Syllabus with Mock Trigger Warning

September 1, 2016

Trigger warnings — cues professors may give students to alert them to potentially troubling material — remain divisive. But most professors who don’t like trigger warnings don’t include them in their syllabi. Not Peter Schwartz, a professor of engineering at Auburn University, who mimicked the medium to critique it. "TRIGGER WARNING: physics, trigonometry, sine, cosine, tangent, vector, force, work, energy, stress, quiz, grade,” reads the top of his syllabus for his fall course in the fundamentals of engineering. Schwartz told AL.com this week that he finds trigger warnings “silly.”

"I think trigger warnings are a joke to begin with and I wanted to see what one might look like in an engineering course,” he said. “Looks kind of silly, doesn't it?” Schwartz told AL.com that he’d gotten very little feedback thus far on the mock-warning, either good or bad. Auburn did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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