Get a Life

I read this Goodbye Academia: Get a Life and Disposable Academic with interest.

Why?  For the Goodbye post, the author provides some realistic personal anecdotes and perspective that tells those who are interested in academia the pros and cons of pursuing an academic career, through a PhD study.  Not every one wants to pursue such an academic pathway, and though there were many who succeeded in achieving their goals, and having their dreams come true, it is not surprising that many others are enjoying or “struggling” their way through.

In the Disposable Academic post:

Indeed, the production of PhDs has far outstripped demand for university lecturers. In a recent book, Andrew Hacker and Claudia Dreifus, an academic and a journalist, report that America produced more than 100,000 doctoral degrees between 2005 and 2009. In the same period there were just 16,000 new professorships.

This seems to match an Asian “motto” of: “Lots of “monks”, small amount of porridge”.  Landing on an academic career seems to become a dream for many, but a fantasy or even an ideology for many academically bright scholars.  A reality check means that many scholars have to strive hard in order to compete in the field.

To me, that is a hard lesson to learn, as I reflected on my own graduate study.

“Measurements and incentives might be changed, too. Some university departments and academics regard numbers of PhD graduates as an indicator of success and compete to produce more. For the students, a measure of how quickly those students get a permanent job, and what they earn, would be more useful.” Disposable Academic

So, get a life.


#CCK11 Should teachers blog?

Good advice from this Should student teachers blog?

Teachers won’t blog if the risks involved are greater than the value it derives from it. I also think it requires courage to publish blogs in public, as beginning teachers could easily “cross” the line, that would lead to serious consequences. “Be professional, be responsible, and be ready to admit my mistakes and correct them” is my motto in blogging.

My 20c share.. Thanks for making me think.

It is no surprise that a lot of businesses and institutions are posting social media guidelines and are expecting employees, educators and learners to follow strictly. “Make no mistakes, post and say the right things, think about the consequences and implications of any postings that would impact on others, educators and learners, the organisation, partners, stakeholders, etc.”

“Make a declaration that the information you posted does not represent the organisation’s views.”

Implications for bloggers

Some people are afraid that the artifacts would leave a less than perfect impression with their current employers, or potential employers, especially when they are perceived as a polluter of media, in the education or business media, that may not fully reflect an institution’s vision or mission.  That is understandable.

Blogging is a very private and personal “business”, and when presented as a personal blog, should and would not be in conflict with any business and organisation, especially when the bloggers are making personal voices that are based on facts, or views and perceptions that they think are important.

Besides, bloggers like me are using blogs as a means to think and reflect on “current education and learning affairs”, where a critical analysis is necessary to achieve meaningful learning.

See the horses. How did they learn?  No pain,  no gain! But have fun, through blogging your views and feelings.  And be free.

Photo: Flickr