Web Site Lists Professors Who 'Indoctrinate' Students

Thomas Bartlett, Tidsskriftet for Universiteternes Efter- og Videreuddannelse, Nov 28, 2002
Commentary by Stephen Downes

There is much wailing and gnashing of teeth over this initiative to identify professors who exhibit bias in their work. The tone of the article (as indicated by the scare quotes in the headline) and of the professors reviewed is that the students rating the professors simply don't understand the material. This condescending attitude won't help, particularly inasmuch as the students have a point: many professors carry their political beliefs into the classroom. But so what? Instead of denying the obvious, embrace it. Professors are not intended to be objective observers of society, they are expected to be interested participants. And as such, they should be encouraged to freely express their biases, and as part and parcel of that freedom, to be ready to take their criticisms like professionals, yes, even from students.
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