I'm taking my classes online this semester, which I generally like better than taking classes on campus, because it lets me work at my own pace. And it could just be that I'm blowing things out of proportion here, but I feel like I'm repeating one of the first classes I ever took online where the instructor thought they were the end-all be-all authority because the course was on the internet.
To begin with, she seems intent on either "fixing" my Asperger Syndrome by forcing me into situations that I find stressful, or she doesn't believe someone with my disability belongs working in the public service sector of the library and is trying to convince me to quit. I've registered with the college's Disability Support, and I have a list of special accommodations and considerations, one of them being the option to opt out of a group project and complete an alternate assignment at any time if it is something I feel my disability would cause problems with, or if I feel uncomfortable working with the other people in my assigned group.
I decided to go ahead and opt out after some consideration, its an online class, most of the students live in the Indianapolis area and I have no way of meeting with them in person, unless I ask my mother to take me and just sit around for a few hours until I need a ride home (that isn't an option for me) or I insist that everyone else bend over backward for me and come here (again, that's just plain rude). Trying to work with people when you can't meet up in real time is hard enough, and when I try to explain my disorder to most people they either think I'm making it up or its something I've found on the internet and am using it as an excuse to just be difficult and not do my work. I tried explaining this to the instructor, and she declined to let me opt out until there was a problem, but if I did, I would have to complete all the extra credit assignments and pass the final with an A or I would fail the class. That didn't seem right to me so I went over her head to Disability Support, and the issue was resolved. But I seem to have have a target placed on my forehead since then.
Each week, there is an assigned discussion that takes place in a forum setting akin to E, except that it is contained within the online course software. In the week that I went over her head and complained, I only recieved partial points because my responses to other people's discussion contributions weren't "on topic." However, she never defined what "on topic" meant in that situation. So while my posted responses did veer off the topic of "Qualities that are Useful for Working the Reference Desk," they were made in response to posts that veered off of that topic. I was able to argue my way up from 0 points to 3 points out of 5. After that, she changed the rubric to reflect what on topic meant.
Now, I have 0 points for last week's discussion as well, because I didn't make my posts before Wednesday. I know I'm not the only one in this boat, but she changed the syllabus sometime between now and last week to reflect that, only I don't know when because she never informed us of the change. Now, normally, I would call up the department head and complain, but my instructor is the department head, so I'm not sure who to call other than the dean of student services. Not to mention that in the past when I've made supposedly anonymous complaints, my grades have been changed, or my discussion participation assignments have disappeared (just mine, nobody else's).
Maybe I am being paranoid, but I feel like this instructor is out to get me. I have to pass this course to graduate, and I'm two semesters away from graduating, so I'm not about to quit. Not to mention its too late for me to drop the class and pick up a new one. I'm a little worried that if I try and transfer into another section of the class, I might face the same problems, since my current instructor is the department head; and I'm leery of making another complaint due to past experience. I feel like I shouldn't have to suffer through this shit just to graduate on time, but at the same time, I just want to get through this class and graduate.