I hate teachers!!
Well, not all of them of course, but today…..
Recently I was asked to give an expert opinion/review on two final thesis by a university. Both documents were sorely lacking evidence of skill, content and the necessary scientific identity that you might expect from students on this level. And I know what I am talking about after 2,5 years as a project manager in educational innovation, 7 years experience in higher education and 5 years as project developer and strategic manager. Our 25 person organisation takes up 20 students each year for practical training and I personally counsel three or four students when they do projects/research at our organisation. So, when I report back to the university that the documents are no better than a 4 on a 10 point scale, I do believe that such judgment deserves merit.
Well, it did have merit in one case, because that student was not allowed to graduate. I had a good discussion with both the teacher and the student and offered the student help for the make up exam.
Yesterday I was called by my boss, because he was invited to sit in on a final defense discussion with the other student. Students are required to argue their final thesis before the teacher and the expert, but only after the thesis has been approved by both. My boss can’t make it today, so he asked me to take care of it. Surprised? Shocked? Furious? Sure, all of it. Especially when I heard that the teacher gave the student an 8 score and that my boss went along and gave a 7.5 score.
What was the teacher’s rationale? He was sorry for the student. She worked so hard on the documents, became pregnant during her studies and because of her minority background she already had so much problems…. Is he crazy? I have been working with minority students all of my career and I can assure you that he is not helping them by lowering quality standards. The market place where the student is going to compete is sometimes brutal. It expects results, not effort, not pity.
Now we have a new professional on the labor market that leaves university with the impression that she performed well, but that we won’t hire because we know she does not have the minimum standards of performance. The girl will suffer, where it is the teacher that should be fired.