Wishing you a Merry Christmas.
Research has been an interesting topic around. In this research bust Mark argues:
“…research is an intellectual good, and yes, we shouldn’t reduce our measures to bean counting. But we can no longer ignore the costs of supporting research—financial costs (salaries, sabbaticals, grants, travel; the cost to libraries to buy and store material, to scholarly presses to evaluate, produce, and market it; and to peers to review it), opportunity costs (not mentoring undergraduates, not pushing foreign languages in general-education requirements, etc.), and human costs (asking smart, conscientious people to labor their lives away on unappreciated things).
The research identity is a powerful allure, flattering people that they have cutting-edge brilliance. Few of them readily trade the graduate seminar for the composition classroom. But we have reached the point at which the commitment to research at the current level actually damages the humanities, turning the human capital of the discipline toward ineffectual toil. More books and articles don’t expand the audience for literary studies.”
Exploring the learning that emerged from research could also be interesting. In this post on What does Educational Research Really Tells Us?
“It’s not unusual to read that a new study has failed to replicate — or has even reversed — the findings of an earlier study. The effect can be disconcerting, particularly when medical research announces that what was supposed to be good for us turns out to be dangerous, or vice versa.
Qualifications and reversals also show up in investigations of education and human behavior, but here an interesting pattern seems to emerge. At first a study seems to validate traditional practices, but then subsequent studies — those that follow subjects for longer periods of time or use more sophisticated outcome measures — call that result into question.”
John writes in his post on Is humanistic research a waste of time?
“Teaching won’t earn a young academic tenure, if research leads her university’s mission. For many tenure-track academics, it’s better to have a happy student clientele with no complaints. Nobody’s measuring the knowledge and skills of undergraduates after each course anyway.”
I need to think about this. May be we need to reflect upon the purpose of education and the needs and expectations of students, not only research, but how research could help us in understanding more about teaching and learning, and the application of knowledge at work and study. Keeping students happy with no complaints sound interesting though.
See this post on retraction of research paper.