Category Archives: academic happenings

My Wish was Granted

Remember my kvetching that we needed to hear something about the adjunctivization crisis from those conveniently silent PhD supervisors? Well, here’s one speaking up. I thought Michael Johnson Jr. had just written another of those pieces on how we all-powerful … Continue reading

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Nobody’s Ally

I’m nobody’s ally.  Colleagues have stickers on their doors proclaiming that they are allies of this and that, but all I post is a sign-up calendar and (in winter) a notice proclaiming it to be the coldest office on campus. It’s … Continue reading

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Where are PhD Supervisors in the Conversation about Adjuncts?

I’ve been in lots of online conversations about adjunctification, and somebody always asks why we keep producing more PhDs than the market will bear. The answer? Crickets. I’ve just realized it’s a meaningless question — at least, the ‘we’ part … Continue reading

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Theory Towers

Over the years I’ve developed a love-hate relationship with theory. Love: theory is powerful, for explanation and prediction and actually doing stuff theory is distancing, both requiring and allowing you to set your emotions aside for a while theory puts … Continue reading

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It Comes Down to Stovewood

Young leftists. On the one hand they’re in the news too often as intolerant, illiberal, and not valuing free speech. Some of them get minimum-wage cafeteria workers discharged when their ethnic food comes from the wrong class, make jokes about burning political opponents alive, … Continue reading

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Biology Leads the Way in Graduate School Transparency

I could not be prouder of my discipline than I am today, after reading about the movement for transparency in graduate school outcomes. Anybody who cares enough to read my blog will know that I’ve gotten so desperate about the … Continue reading

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I Can’t See How the Republicans are Wrong Here…

And it worries me, of course. But it seems to me that giving tax breaks on graduate students’ tuition waivers is, essentially, financial support for the graduate school industry. Universities are obviously the great beneficiaries of the graduate school industry, … Continue reading

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Complicity and Naming Buildings

When I joined my current school, we only had one building named after a person. It was named after St. Clare of Assisi, who I knew only as the patron saint of television. In recent years, the school has gone … Continue reading

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Forget ‘Wellness,’ let’s Do Stuff

Here’s an interesting article about debates on the concept of ‘wellness’ from the latest Chronicle of Higher Education (sorry, behind a paywall!) One of the things I like most about it is that the author welcomes vigorous debate about the … Continue reading

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OMG CSS! And what does it mean for teaching?

It’s taken years, but I’ve finally come around to cascading style sheets. I was introduced to them in the absolutely worst way, when a Dreamweaver update suddenly refused to accept half the commands I was used to putting into my … Continue reading

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