Universities put us on the naughty step

March 29, 2018

In her opinion article “UK academics have snapped – and not just over pensions” (22 March), Sarah Colvin argues that universities increasingly treat academics like feckless children who cannot be trusted.

I agree with this sentiment. I did not start working in academia until my early thirties, and I could not get over the fact that it was like being back at school, like you were permanently “on report” – with metrics, reviews, scores and so on to say whether you were good enough or not.

Our institution is moving towards performance management as a way of dispensing with a few people. It is like working your whole life in a school where you just hope that you are not put on the naughty step.

Rachel London
Via timeshighereducation.com

Academics are more and more like dogs on a lead because we are desperate for money and students. Money from funding agencies (which tell us what is to be investigated and how to investigate it); and money from students (who buy the “student experience” in the same way they buy tickets to a theme park attraction).

We plead for support from industry, which tells us what we should teach to our students and what we should research. We are continuously ranked (top research, top teaching, top student experience, top paper…) against indicators that are quickly manipulated. Where is the autonomy?

Via timeshighereducation.com

Send to

Letters should be sent to: THE.Letters@timeshighereducation.com
Letters for publication in Times Higher Education should arrive by 9am Monday.
View terms and conditions.

Please login or register to read this article.

Register to continue

Get a month's unlimited access to THE content online. Just register and complete your career summary.

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Most commented


Featured jobs

Academic Registry

University Of Surrey

Head of Digital

St Marys University, Twickenham

DTA3 MSCA Research Fellow

University Of Central Lancashire