by Michael Ho

Filed Under:
academia, education, professors, teachers, tenure


DailyDirt: How Do You Solve A Problem Like... Academia?

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Getting a tenured professorship position has been the dream job of a multitude of highly-educated researchers, but as funding cuts have hit public universities, these careers aren't looking as attractive as they once did. The academic system may soon be looking at some significant changes if the promise of tenure no longer serves to compensate underpaid educators. Here are just a few complaints about the current system, and feel free to suggest some solutions in the comments.... If you'd like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post.

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2012 @ 6:27pm

    Maybe those people should I dunno do what Khan Academy did.

    Produce your own teaching material and sign up those that want it.

    Just throwing ideas on the wall to see what sticks.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. icon
    ECA (profile), 6 Aug 2012 @ 7:25pm

    Subject of preofessors.

    Business reality/School reality is the SAME..
    You need 1 professor(boss) that earns the money and 20 people BELOW him/them to DO what the BOSS says.
    It dont matter what occupation you are in, now days.
    you need 1 person that knows it all, and it DONT MATTER what the others know, they just work CHEAPER then having 10-20 BOSS's around.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Aug 2012 @ 7:30pm

    All in all...

    It's just another brick in the wall.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. icon
    SujaOfJauhnral (profile), 6 Aug 2012 @ 7:56pm

    From the third article

    There is a terrifying trend in this country right now of attacking academia, specifically, and free thought and intellectualism, generally. Free thought is painted as subversive, dangerous, elitist, and (strangely) conspiratorial. (That word… I do not think it means what you think it means.) Universities are accused of inefficiency and professors of becoming deadwood after tenure or of somehow “subverting the youth”. (Socrates’s accusers made a similar claim before they poisoned one of the great thinkers of the human race.) Politicians attack science to score points with religious fundamentalists and corporate sponsors.

    Some elements of these feelings have always floated through the United States psyche, but in recent years it has risen to the level of a festering, suppurating, gangrenous wound in the zeitgeist of the country. Perhaps those who sling accusations at education have forgotten that the US reshaped millennia of social and economic inequity by leading the way in creating public education in the nineteenth century? Or that education has underlaid the majority of the things that have made this country great — fields in which we have led the world? Art, music, literature, political philosophy, architecture, engineering, science, mathematics, medicine, and many others? That the largest economy in the world rests on (educated) innovation, and that the most powerful military in human history is enabled by technological and engineering fruits of the educational system? That the very bones of the United States — the constitution we claim to hold so dear — was crafted by highly educated political idealists of the Enlightenment, who firmly believed that freedom and a more just society are possible only through the actions of an enlightened and educated population of voters?

    Frankly, it’s sickening, not to mention dangerous. If the haters, fearers, and political opportunists have their way, they will gut one of the greatest institutions in human history and, in the process, will cut the throat of this country, draining its lifeblood of future creativity. Other countries will be happy to fill the gap, I’m sure, and pick over the carcass of the country that was once the United States of America.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. icon
    SujaOfJauhnral (profile), 6 Aug 2012 @ 8:02pm


    Pretty sad, but it's nothing new. It's the reason I don't give a fuck about the usual methods of education, I have learned 10x more in .01 the time just surfing the internets.

    As you probably suspected, I never did good in school, I was always singled out as an idiot and a psycho for doing/thinking differently.

    The irony is that I was probably the one of the smartest people there but people tend to judge "intelligence" by how much useless parrot knowledge you can remember and how well you can cling to the doctrine.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. icon
    SujaOfJauhnral (profile), 6 Aug 2012 @ 8:05pm

    Re: All in all...

    Yep. And I don't need no "education"/thought control/drugs to calm me.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 7 Aug 2012 @ 12:04am


    some tenured professors don't actually want to teach, they want to do research and teaching is just the part of their job that pays the bills....

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. icon
    Dionaea (profile), 7 Aug 2012 @ 9:42am

    Re: Re:

    I know what you mean, it was the same with me... When I was in elementary school the teachers said I shouldn't go to a school with classical education cause they thought I wasn't smart enough. I'm now about to get my master's degree in Biology, probably the only person from my year to do so. Elementary school teachers are themselves generally too stupid to recognize intelligent kids. Even more so if those kids have some sort of learning disability (autism and dyslexia run in our family, but we didn't find out about this until my younger brother got tested).

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. icon
    cjovalle (profile), 8 Aug 2012 @ 8:13am

    Re: Re:

    It's not necessarily that they don't want to teach; it's that teaching's not rewarded. This is particularly true at Tier 1 Research institutions. You're teaching evaluations play very little role into whether or not you actually get tenure. You have to work on publishing and grants.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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