One of the problems of course creation
It doesn't happen in a vacuum. I'm working on syllabi, because I've not been able to settle to writing. I've got a 4+ course load (the 5th meets for one hour a week) this term. Two courses are new, upper-division, and I've never actually taught either of them. One, thank goodness, is in one of my specialty areas. The problem is, I have an idea of what should go in this course (and honestly, what should go into this course at an upper-division level is half the course, done in real depth. But I am the only Europeanist, so that means I have to keep a bunch of courses in rotation over a two-year cycle. Well, actually, I can do anything I damned well please, but I think it's fairer to the students to make it possible for them to count on courses being offered every couple of years.
The fun thing this time is that, out of the eight courses (six discrete preps) I'm teaching this year, six are service courses. Three are entirely new preps. I need to make these courses good as distinct courses. They have to hold up to standards that would match them to other universities' standards. But one of the things that I've realised is that faculty at the 'top' universities teach fewer courses and often have TAs. I'm desperately torn between wanting to assign the kind of reading that I think appropriate, based on my own experiences and by surveying my peers, and thinking, "OMG!!!! I can't get all this reading done! And there's no time to discuss all the reading, and the students will be pissed if I ask them to read this stuff and we don't. Right -- that last part is silly. Reading is going to be good for their understanding, and we've gone many a decade, if not century, where students have had to read and integrate information without the prof going over it all.
And then there are the written assignments. How to fit them in to a course schedule that makes sense, when you know that you're screwed if you don't spread out the marking ... Is it better to mark a bunch of short assignments constantly? or a bunch of big ones? How do we balance rigor with the time constraints of our jobs and lives?
I know lots of you are dealing with this. It's nothing new. But I have to admit, I'm starting to understand why the people who teach 3-2 and 2-2 are so much more productive. And I'm starting to think I really want to be one of those people.
I have brought some of this on myself. I am trying to help build a program. But there is only one of me, and lots of students. Turns out, I have half again to double the number of students enrolled are two of my colleagues. But you know, I'm looking at this year and thinking it may kill me.