Teachers must tune in to student diversity 2

January 28, 2010

There is much to agree with in Eric Sotto's piece, yet he errs by conflating an evidence-based approach to teaching with gaining teaching qualifications, and I am unconvinced by his call to make them compulsory. If qualifications made us better teachers, demand for them would ensure their rapid spread throughout the profession. Better still, there would be competition among the providers of teaching qualifications, just as with any other degree.

Sotto believes that qualifications should be compulsory for academics, just as they are for airline pilots. Yet it would be quite sufficient if passengers knew when buying tickets whether or not pilots were qualified - likewise with students choosing where and what to study.

Neal Hockley, Lecturer in environmental policy, Bangor University.

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Universities in most nations are now obliged to prioritise graduate career prospects, but how it should be approached depends on your view of the meaning of education. Academics need to think that through much more clearly, says Tom Cutterham


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