Saturday, June 6, 2009

Research versus Teaching

. Saturday, June 6, 2009

Lee Sigelman over at The Monkey Cage asks why Universities incentivize research over teaching in the Humanities and Social Sciences. Lee points to a recent paper (NBER abstract here; summary here), on the question, concluding:

"I find their paper interesting not so much for the answers they provide, but rather because they’ve laid out a question whose answer so many of us take for granted — that research is simply a Good Thing that needs to be encouraged — that we don’t take the trouble to think it through."

One commenter on the post notes, "Young scholars in the making do not decide to attend graduate school because they want to teach; once there, they are not trained to teach; after receiving their degrees, they are not hired on the basis of their ability to teach." I wonder if this is true.


Andy P said...

I choose to come to grad school because I wanted to teach. I've trained myself to teach by observing professors and evaluating their content and method. I've read about teaching on my own time and in the department's class. I've developed a set of pedagogical goals, a philosophy about how to convey them, and a demonstrable record of using them. Whether or not any school will think that's worth hiring me for all that work . . . this school year will tell the tale.

Research versus Teaching
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