Thursday, December 20, 2007

Academic PEDs 

I don't know why this is news. I knew several students while in graduate school that used "whites" or No-Doz or some other stimulants that may or may not have been legal to enhance performance during finals. Me, I made espresso for myself with a pot I bought at a Pier 1. (Only after quals did I learn how to make Turkish coffee -- I think my Iranian friends in school were trying to get a competitive advantage!) Would I have used these other "little helpers" in graduate school to get through qualifying exams? Let he who is without sin...

Still, I think it's a valid question that the article asks: If you knew your student was taking a cognitive enhancer, what would you do? If you're an assistant professor at a university where tenure is competitive -- A's receiving tenure decreases the probability that B in the same department will gain it -- what is your reaction? There will be no Mitchell Report on this; figure it out for yourself.

(h/t: Chronicle of Higher Ed)