Research: is it essential?

May 2, 1997

Philip Cerny says it is not necessary to do research to be a good teacher nor is it necessary for those who want to be a teacher to work in a secondary school, even if it does allow you to take proper holidays. Having worked in both sectors, I find teaching in higher education infinitely more satisfying than teaching in the secondary system. What is wrong in higher education is that teaching is undervalued. The main customers in higher education are students and the principal interface between them and the institution are teachers.

Although the quality of administration and research will have an impact on students' perception of the institution, it is primarily their reaction to their teachers that moulds their opinions on the quality of their learning.

Philip Entwistle

Senior lecturer in quantitative methods

Nene, Northampton

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