Tuesday, 16 November 2010

From somewhere beneath the Ivory Tower

I haven't really had time to digest this yet, but here you are if you haven't yet seen it: An article by a ten-year veteran of an essay-writing service, who may or may not call himself The Shadow Scholar. It's both eye-opening and a little sad. He sounds like he's got a lot of talent, and I can't help but wonder why he hasn't gone into teaching. He's obviously clever enough for it.

Go read it. I'll wait.

I suppose I can see the temptation. The amount I get paid to help students rewrite their own essays (arguably harder than doing it yourself, imho) is chump change compared to what he gets for writing one. And I can certainly see the temptation for students with learning/expression challenges and ESL issues to make use of the services.

Not that I think they should, mind you. I just have a talent for empathy. ;)

In defense of Gothic Revival U, we have a fantastic center for helping out students with learning disabilities and ESL issues, and as far as I'm aware, it's covered under tuition, so if they need the help the only drawback is the time it takes. Which makes it the cheaper option, if not the easier one. At which point one can pretty categorically condemn the use of essay-writing services by any student as lazy and self-entitled.

Oh, and as an update to my last post, Dean Dad did, in fact, respond to Tenured Radical's post about running universities like corporations, but mostly it was a defense of the community college rather than an explanation of the ridiculous sums paid to CEOs of private universities in the US. Ah well. Just call me Huey Long (but please, don't shoot).

1 comment:

Janice said...

Investing time in education is a real disincentive to some students. I'm thrilled when someone says they want to work on a project and see they've really done the preparation necessary to get to the next step. But some want to get there without the input of time necessary to do so. That's where these services really come into their worst possibilities.