A pile of US $100 bills
Higher Education

On the Market IV: Paying for the Privilege

There are lots of articles out there about the hardships endured by early-career scholars, particularly those trapped in the precarious employment of the adjunct system. A shiny new PhD all too often amounts to little more than a ticket to several years of un(der)-employment, migrant work on the VAP* and …

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CultureHigher Education

God and Dan at BYU: (Discriminatingly) On the Market III

Dan refuses to honor Brigham Young University with his application for a position because of its required policy for faculty to be hostile to non-monogamous, non-heterosexual life choices. How ineffectual!  Here’s what he should do instead. Apply to BYU.  Get himself interviewed.  Wow the entire faculty and get the job …

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Image of BYU north campus with the word "nope" overlaid in red.
Higher EducationPolitics

On the Market III: BYU doesn’t deserve my application (or yours).

The conventional wisdom when it comes to the academic job hunt is to apply for every open position, no matter what it is or where it is located. After all, the reasoning goes, beggars can’t afford to be choosers, and you never know what kind of places might actually be a …

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EducationFeminismHigher Education

Towards Better Sexual Assault Prevention Tips?

It is no secret that colleges and universities are paying more attention to sexual assault on their campuses. This school year, The Campus Sexual Violence Elimination (SaVE) Act went into effect with a look towards better prevention and accountability for instances of campus sexual assault. The media and opinionated onlookers have …

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Critical ThinkingHigher Education

Should colleges and universities require students to take courses on diversity?

Here at UCLA, we faculty voted some months ago to add a “diversity” course requirement for graduation.  Such a course could be taken from any number of departments on campus, as long as the course substantially addressed issues of diversity in cultures (everything from literature to religion), human populations, behaviors …

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Higher EducationScience

Are English-only PhDs in the Sciences a Problem?

Following the general rule of headlines-posed-as-questions, you can probably guess my answer already: probably not. That said, this recent cri du cœur (ha!) in Vitae deserves a bit more attention than just one sentence, so I’d like to flesh out that ‘probably not’ with a more thorough look at the principal questions raised …

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Persone writing on a blackboard
Higher Education

Those who can teach, those who can’t teach in college

That’s of course an entirely unfair overgeneralisation, but I guess I have your attention now, right? I recently took part in a scientific conference on the latest research in Spanish (more about the content in a different post) and what struck me was the bad quality of some of presentations …

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Higher Education

What’s In A Number (Or Letter)?

I’ve noticed a disturbing trend in my last two semesters of teaching (my first classroom experience after grad school.) I avoid grading. I look upon it with dread and procrastinate as much as possible. But isn’t that normal? Don’t most instructors hate to grade? I realized it most strongly at …

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Higher Education

Professionalism 101: How never to correspond with students

Earlier today libarienne posted a link to this viral post on vitae, in which a number of (purportedly) real, actual, human professors respond to a fictional request for a grade change with all the high-handed, sneering derision they could fit into a few hundred words. Gilliel’s comment basically hits the nail on …

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Melody Torcolacci file photo
FeaturedHigher EducationScience

Anti-vax “prof” ignites scandal at Queen’s U

This week the Principal and Provost of Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario publicly acknowledged student complaints that an instructor in the Faculty of Kinesiology and Health Studies was promoting anti-vaccine materials in a basic health class. The instructor in question, Melody Torcolacci, is reported to have presented her Health 102 class …

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