Field of Science

Sounds of Silence

My lament that, with regards to discussion of education reform, a trace of small liberal arts colleges has disappeared into the ether appears to have, itself, disappeared into the ether. Seriously, readers, I expected some response to that one. There are parts of my post even I disagree with.


Unknown said...

I was gonna post a comment, but it's not that relevant. At my university, with over 20,000 undergrads and huge amounts of research, I still had fantastic teachers. Only the professors that wanted to teach did so, so the quality of instruction was top notch.

Even if most of my classes had 100+ students.

GamesWithWords said...

Not relevant in that you think

1) teaching quality is independent of the size of the school, or

2) because you think whether a school considers teaching ability in tenure decisions and whether professors spend the bulk of their time or very little of their time preparing classes is irrelevant to the quality of instruction?

The first seems logically necessary (there's no reason a big school couldn't have good teachers). The latter point seems a priori unlikely and, if true, distressing (suggests nobody has any idea what constitutes good teaching, and time spent in preparation has no benefit). That doesn't make it wrong, just an unlikely starting point.

GamesWithWords said...

And, in any case, it IS relevant to the discussion in the blogosphere, which is about whether or not schools should tenure based on teaching ability. The point is that there are such schools already.