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Re: [SCA-JML] was Fight for your... now new edition

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  • Andrew Trembley
    ... She already has a solid academic career... andy
    Message 1 of 13 , May 31, 2009
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      the.lady.phoenix@... wrote:
      > Gees!
      >
      > Have you considered turning "Pro"? It sounds like you have the
      > experience to do so from here.
      She already has a solid academic career...

      andy
    • Solveig Throndardottir
      Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! ... Thank you for the thought. The truth is that academe is a rotten business unless you have tenure or are otherwise
      Message 2 of 13 , Jun 1, 2009
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        Noble Cousin!

        Greetings from Solveig!
        > She already has a solid academic career...

        Thank you for the thought. The truth is that academe is a rotten
        business unless you have tenure or are otherwise firmly established.
        This last academic year, I basked in impoverished unemployment. Thus
        far, I haven't found a gig for next year either. My checkered
        academic career is far from unique. I know quite a few people who got
        out in science or mathematics in the early 90's who are still trying
        to land tenure. You may recall that Bush the Elder was making a lot
        of noise about there being a shortage of such folks. It was actually
        a big lie designed to grease importing people from the former Soviet
        Union and China. The reality is that there is hard documentation for
        unemployment rates of about 50% among newly minted PhDs about the
        year that I got out. This documentation under-reported the actual
        rate as a lot of people were delaying graduation. Meanwhile, colleges
        and universities were combining junior positions in order to offer
        senior appointments to the imported faculty. Eventually, this lead to
        a backlash especially at public institutions which were compelled by
        legislatures to employ professors who could speak English. However,
        senior faculty are very good about waving their hands and claiming
        that incomprehensible colleagues actually speak good English. And,
        yes, while I have taken courses from even recent immigrants who were
        quite comprehensible, I have encountered immigrant faculty who were
        incomprehensible.

        The moral that you should take away from this is that when you hear a
        lot of noise about there being a shortage in one field or another
        they may actually be trying to justify outsourcing, importing cheap
        foreign labor, or otherwise put the squeeze on domestic workers.

        An interesting piece of organizational behavior. The less they pay
        you, the more confident they are that they can evaluate you. The more
        they pay you, the less confident they are that they can evaluate you.
        This is a fairly well documented phenomenon. We are seeing this being
        played out on a large scale at the moment with CEOs being paid
        astronomical sums by failing companies. Meanwhile, the people who
        actually design, make, and distribute products and services are being
        pressed to accept lower pay and fewer benefits.

        Finally, watch Horse Feathers sometime. Things are still pretty much
        the same. The coach of a loosing team at Syracuse University is paid
        something on the order of three to five times as much as the
        Chancellor and about 20 or 30 times as much as they were paying me. I
        forget the exact salaries of these people. But, the orders of
        magnitude are correct. In fact, the athletics department claims that
        the "Orange Men" loose, because the coaches aren't being paid enough.

        Oh well. That's probably far far more belly aching than you ever
        wanted to hear from me. But, the really amusing thing is those
        tenured faculty who whine about how their salaries aren't high enough
        and seek Summer employment to increase their salary. This may be
        justifiable for English full professors at SUNY colleges who make
        about $40K a year and is certainly justifiable for a friend of mine
        who is an adjunct English professor, but I've heard the same belly
        aching from professors with six figure salaries at Syracuse
        University. Me? I'd just like to have a nice quiet secure academic
        gig at a small to medium size school where you can form personal
        relationships with colleagues and students.

        Your Humble Servant
        Solveig Throndardottir
        Amateur Scholar






        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Michael Peters
        Solvieig wrote snip
        Message 3 of 13 , Jun 1, 2009
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          Solvieig wrote > snip<


          And my family and PhD friends wonder why I won't go back to school.8)

          She neglected to mention the unceasing internal warfare/politics and jockeying for position as well.








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          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Andrew Trembley
          ... But... that is a solid academic career by today s standards. Seriously, yeah, I totally get this. The politics are horrible. The shortage of real
          Message 4 of 13 , Jun 1, 2009
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            Solveig Throndardottir wrote:
            > Noble Cousin!
            >
            > Greetings from Solveig!
            >
            >> She already has a solid academic career...
            >>
            >
            > Thank you for the thought. The truth is that academe is a rotten
            > business unless you have tenure or are otherwise firmly established.
            > This last academic year, I basked in impoverished unemployment.
            But... that is a solid academic career by today's standards.

            Seriously, yeah, I totally get this. The politics are horrible. The
            shortage of real management skills makes /Dilbert/ seem like a dream
            environment. I work in administration at a public university, and I've
            followed a few friends through decades of part-time teaching and through
            tenure battles. I've watched psycho deans (a particular one so bad that
            her college was dissolved by the Provost shortly after it's 25th
            anniversary and rolled back into two others when she went on sabbatical;
            that sounds psycho but it was important she had no job to return to and
            she had almost destroyed the college anyway) move tenured professors
            into management positions to make them easier to fire.

            andy
          • Solveig Throndardottir
            Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! Actually, a lot of administrators hold tenured faculty positions. So, they can be pretty hard to fire. You can sack them
            Message 5 of 13 , Jun 1, 2009
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              Noble Cousin!

              Greetings from Solveig! Actually, a lot of administrators hold
              tenured faculty positions. So, they can be pretty hard to fire. You
              can sack them as dean or department chairman, but they can still go
              back to their old departments with their tails between their legs,
              but at greatly inflated salary. You can either try to force them to
              resign or reorganize them into a department or program and then kill
              the entire department or program.

              Incidentally, student reviews are very influential in retaining
              faculty. However, any complaints about language ability are summarily
              dismissed. So, it is probably easier these days to get tenure if you
              are a non-native English speaker as the students will invariably
              complain about your language ability.

              Your Humble Servant
              Solveig Throndardottir
              Amateur Scholar






              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • the.lady.phoenix@gmail.com
              Get around that but complaining about how poorly they presented the material. How they were unable to present it in a way that made it learnable, or something
              Message 6 of 13 , Jun 1, 2009
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                Get around that but complaining about how poorly they presented the
                material. How they were unable to present it in a way that made it
                learnable, or something like that. I've never filled out those "end
                of semester" pollings usually tossing them in the garbage or leaving
                when the professor did if it was at the end of the class.

                Sara

                On 01/06/2009, Solveig Throndardottir <nostrand@...> wrote:
                > Noble Cousin!
                >
                > Greetings from Solveig! Actually, a lot of administrators hold
                > tenured faculty positions. So, they can be pretty hard to fire. You
                > can sack them as dean or department chairman, but they can still go
                > back to their old departments with their tails between their legs,
                > but at greatly inflated salary. You can either try to force them to
                > resign or reorganize them into a department or program and then kill
                > the entire department or program.
                >
                > Incidentally, student reviews are very influential in retaining
                > faculty. However, any complaints about language ability are summarily
                > dismissed. So, it is probably easier these days to get tenure if you
                > are a non-native English speaker as the students will invariably
                > complain about your language ability.
                >
                > Your Humble Servant
                > Solveig Throndardottir
                > Amateur Scholar
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                >
                >
              • Sonny Scott
                In one class, we were told that the evaluations went to the Dean, and the teacher didn t see them. The next class the teacher ranted for 20 minutes about the
                Message 7 of 13 , Jun 1, 2009
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                  In one class, we were told that the evaluations went to the Dean, and the teacher didn't see them. The next class the teacher ranted for 20 minutes about the poor evaluations he received and tried to defend his persistent tardiness.

                  _______________________________
                  From: "the.lady.phoenix@..." <the.lady.phoenix@...>
                  To: sca-jml@yahoogroups.com
                  Sent: Monday, June 1, 2009 3:17:07 PM
                  Subject: Re: [SCA-JML] Life in Academia


                  Get around that but complaining about how poorly they presented the
                  material. How they were unable to present it in a way that made it
                  learnable, or something like that. I've never filled out those "end
                  of semester" pollings usually tossing them in the garbage or leaving
                  when the professor did if it was at the end of the class.

                  Sara
                • the.lady.phoenix@gmail.com
                  They don t see the evaluations you do they are Sanatized typed up, and then turned over to the instructor so they can know what students liked and responded
                  Message 8 of 13 , Jun 1, 2009
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                    They don't see the evaluations you do they are "Sanatized" typed up,
                    and then turned over to the instructor so they can know what students
                    liked and responded to and what they didn't.

                    However, I don't belive that they ever do that, I think they say that
                    and then hand the forms over to the professor.

                    Sara

                    On 01/06/2009, Sonny Scott <onesoni@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > In one class, we were told that the evaluations went to the Dean, and the
                    > teacher didn't see them. The next class the teacher ranted for 20 minutes
                    > about the poor evaluations he received and tried to defend his persistent
                    > tardiness.
                    >
                    > _______________________________
                  • Solveig Throndardottir
                    Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! ... The exact procedure depends upon the school in question. In some schools the professors receive the originals back.
                    Message 9 of 13 , Jun 2, 2009
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                      Noble Cousin!

                      Greetings from Solveig!
                      > They don't see the evaluations you do they are "Sanatized" typed up,
                      > and then turned over to the instructor so they can know what students
                      > liked and responded to and what they didn't.
                      >
                      > However, I don't belive that they ever do that, I think they say that
                      > and then hand the forms over to the professor.
                      The exact procedure depends upon the school in question. In some
                      schools the professors receive the originals back. In others they
                      don't. However, disclosing their contents to the administration is a
                      common feature of reappointment and tenure at a lot of places.
                      Further, a lot of places are demanding to see them during the hiring
                      process. This all makes for eviscerating "higher education". The
                      book, Grade Inflation, documents studies proving that these tests at
                      best measure student anxiety at the end of the academic term. All of
                      this motivates professors to reduce student anxiety. The easiest way
                      to do this is to water down courses. For example, a tenured professor
                      of my acquaintance told me back around 1995 that she had recently
                      looked at a test she had been using a decade or so previously. She
                      said that she could never give it to the current crop of students
                      even though students had previously done well on it.

                      Your Humble Servant
                      Solveig Throndardottir
                      Amateur Scholar






                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • the.lady.phoenix@gmail.com
                      sounds as bad as standardized tests in the lower grade levels. Sara
                      Message 10 of 13 , Jun 2, 2009
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                        sounds as bad as standardized tests in the lower grade levels.

                        Sara

                        On 02/06/2009, Solveig Throndardottir <nostrand@...> wrote:
                        > Noble Cousin!
                        >
                        > Greetings from Solveig!
                        >> They don't see the evaluations you do they are "Sanatized" typed up,
                        >> and then turned over to the instructor so they can know what students
                        >> liked and responded to and what they didn't.
                        >>
                        >> However, I don't belive that they ever do that, I think they say that
                        >> and then hand the forms over to the professor.
                        > The exact procedure depends upon the school in question. In some
                        > schools the professors receive the originals back. In others they
                        > don't. However, disclosing their contents to the administration is a
                        > common feature of reappointment and tenure at a lot of places.
                        > Further, a lot of places are demanding to see them during the hiring
                        > process. This all makes for eviscerating "higher education". The
                        > book, Grade Inflation, documents studies proving that these tests at
                        > best measure student anxiety at the end of the academic term. All of
                        > this motivates professors to reduce student anxiety. The easiest way
                        > to do this is to water down courses. For example, a tenured professor
                        > of my acquaintance told me back around 1995 that she had recently
                        > looked at a test she had been using a decade or so previously. She
                        > said that she could never give it to the current crop of students
                        > even though students had previously done well on it.
                        >
                        > Your Humble Servant
                        > Solveig Throndardottir
                        > Amateur Scholar
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        >
                        >
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