This is lifted from a presentation at the AHA in Boston by Terrence J. McDonald, dean at the University of Michigan. The points are drawn from the History News Network’s summation.
- “I didn’t get a PhD in history, etc. to start talking about the budget.” Well, neither did I, and anyway we’re in a truly new economic situation.
- “Why do I have to teach undergraduates?” It’s a sadly pervasive problem in research universities, as the general public believes that the primary goal of research universities is to teach undergraduate.s
- “My research is so important that I must teach less than my colleagues” There is nothing more demoralizing.
- “Why can’t the lecturers do it?” The relationship between tenure track and non-tenure track faculty. Universities assumed that non-tenure track faculty were a stopgap measure where tenure track faculty were unavailable. Almost all higher ed (public and private) relies on contingent faculty. 65 percent of positions in higher education are non-tenure track.
- “My department does not have enough graduate students?” To fill the graduate course that I teach.
- “Now that the financial situation is a eroding, it’s a good time to explore interdisciplinary approaches.” A disastrous mistake.
- “What are the liberal arts going to do about economic development and entrepreneurship?” “When are the liberal arts going to offer a business concentration?” Never. The error is of preparing students for today’s crisis, as opposed to the world to come.
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