Choose the Teacher, Not the Subject
Some of my students were asking my opinion on what subjects they should choose to enrol in the next semester. You see, the institution where I work requires students to do a certain number of “interdisciplinary” subjects, subjects which are not related to their course of study. This means a Mechanical Engineering student can also enrol for subjects like Social Psychology, Financial Management, or Basic French, and a Business student can do subjects like Photography, Drama & Poetry, or Literature Appreciation.
The typical advice for students would be to pick the subject which they are most interested in, or at least the one that sounds most interesting, or the least boring one (if none of them seem remotely interesting). If all else fails, pick the one that seems easiest to get a passing grade. For instance, Photography would probably be easier than Social Psychology.
The advice I gave to my students was to pick the subject with the best teacher, regardless of whether the subject seems interesting or not. (Of course, I then had to help them identify the best teachers in the list.)
With a great teacher, any dull subject can be transformed into a meaningful and engaging one, inspiring the student into deep and profound learning. All the student has to do is to step into the classroom with an open mind.
Those who disagree with me on this point probably have never been inspired by a great teacher before. Which, unfortunately, is not too uncommon, because great teachers are a precious few.
And if the student is already interested in a certain subject, but the teacher isn’t a good one, I would still advise that student to choose the subject with the best teacher instead.
Besides not being engaging and inspiring, a poor teacher can even kill whatever interest the student has in that subject, so the student will actually be worse off at the end of the semester.
We don’t have anything on the History of Carpet Weaving in Turkey, but if we do and a great teacher is teaching it, I’d make sure all my students sign up for it. I might even request to join in some of the lessons!