Here we go again. In just over 24 hours, the Spring 2014 incarnation of Stat 2X comes alive.
Unless an instructor is annoyingly well prepared, the days just before the start of any course are filled with checking, double checking, spluttering with outrage (it's unexplained spacing and random font changes that are getting to me this time), and realizing with horror that some crucial element still needs attention.
But along with all that is the grin that will keep cutting through the frazzle. The eyes begin to light up just that little bit more. The fingers start tapping on the table. There is a quickening to everything.
A mere 26,000 registered students at the moment: intimate, compared to the almost 55,000 with which 2.1X ended up last year.
There are 196 countries in the world, give or take a few. Last year, the number of countries represented among Stat 2X students was 185.
From places comfortably settled into peace and prosperity, or ravaged by war or poverty, and in all conditions in between, they signed up and logged on: students of all backgrounds and ages, motivated to learn one of the most used and least understood subjects around.
What an extraordinary privilege it is for us to be part of this.
Welcome, everyone, to Stat 2X 2014.