In addition, the average time students devote to studying varies widely among different colleges, and many campuses could require more of their students.Those lacking evidence about the study habits of their undergraduates could inform themselves through confidential surveys that faculties could review and consider steps to encourage greater student effort and improve learning.
In addition, the average time students devote to studying varies widely among different colleges, and many campuses could require more of their students.
As late as two or three generations ago, majorities of new Ph.
D.s, at least in the better graduate programs, found positions where research was primary, either in major universities, industry or government. D.s find employment in colleges that are chiefly devoted to teaching or work as adjunct instructors and are not expected to do research.
Meanwhile, the advent of new technologies has given rise to methods of teaching that require special training.
As evidence accumulates about promising ways of engaging students actively, identifying difficulties they are having in learning the material and adjusting teaching methods accordingly, the current gaps in the preparation most graduate students receive become more and more of a handicap.
Universities have already begun to prepare graduate students to teach by giving them opportunities to assist professors in large lecture courses and by creating centers where they can get help to become better instructors.
More departments are starting to provide or even require a limited amount of instruction in how to teach.The vast difference between how well seniors proficiencies (according to tests of basic skills and employer evaluations) suggests that many colleges are failing to give students an adequate account of their progress.Grade inflation may also contribute to excessive confidence, suggesting a need to work to restore appropriate standards, although that alone is unlikely to solve the problem.By concentrating so heavily on graduation rates and attainment levels, policy makers are ignoring danger signs that the amount that students learn in college may have declined over the past few decades and could well continue to do so in the years to come.The reasons for concern include: While some college leaders are making serious efforts to improve the quality of teaching, many others seem content with their existing programs.Nevertheless, simply allowing grad students to serve as largely unsupervised teaching assistants, or creating centers where they can receive a brief orientation or a few voluntary sessions on teaching, will not adequately equip them for a career in the classroom.A more substantial preparation is required and will become ever more necessary as the body of relevant knowledge continues to grow.With all the talk in graduate school circles about preparing doctoral students for jobs outside academe, one has to wonder why departments spend time readying Ph. candidates for entirely different careers before they have developed adequate programs for the academic posts that graduate schools are supposed to serve, and that most of their students continue to occupy.Many departments may fail to provide such instruction because they lack faculty with necessary knowledge, but provosts and deans could enlist competent teachers for such instruction from elsewhere in the university, although they may hesitate to do so, given than graduate education has always been the exclusive domain of the departments.Such sentiments suggest either that the courses do not in fact contribute much to the ultimate goals that colleges claim to value or that instructors are not taking sufficient care to explain the larger aims of their courses and why they should matter.Other studies suggest that many instructors do not teach their courses in ways best calculated to achieve the ends that faculties themselves consider important.