Between the developments in large language models (like GPT-3) and their possible use by students, and being in the thick of end-of-term grading of papers, the idea of making use of oral exams, as suggested in a recent New York Times column, seems tempting.It would be useful to hear from philosophy professors who have used oral exams in undergraduate courses. What are the advantages and disadvantages? What are some tips for doing it well? What are some problems to try to avoid? How structured are they? How uniform across students? Do you use a rubric, and if so, what’s on it? What kinds of philosophical questions do they work well with, and which not? What do the students think of them?
And for those who haven’t used oral exams in this setting: do you have other questions you’re hoping could be answered by those who have? Do you have particular concerns about doing so?
Tell us all about it. Thank you!