Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Students get a peek 

The campus newspaper tries to explain the tenure system in a long piece today. The criteria discussed is within this article in the faculty contract. (See section B.) The paper's editorial, predictably, doesn't think tenured professors are involved enough with students.
Good though they may be, the MnSCU evaluation standards still do not quite cover all bases. Nowhere is there a specific area for evaluating people skills. This might fall under "teaching" if interpreted broadly, but the editorial board would like to see professors held accountable for their finesse for person-to-person interaction. No one should presume that professors have the most excellent or perfect people skills, of course, but students should expect that their professors can be lively in the classroom. Professors should be excited to promote learning. Tenure evaluations already touch on this subject, but more emphasis should be placed on the professor's ability to interact with people, both on a professor-to-student and a professor-to-classroom basis.