Tuesday, September 29, 2009


I dislike being assessed. Being judged and evaluated, measured against some abstract scale, always makes me resentful. I have my own measures of success and have no interest in conforming to anyone else's opinions of what is valuable.

Of course, when you choose to become part of academia, it's a non-stop parade of evaluation. As a student you're graded on what you write, what you say and what you do. When you become a faculty member, you're graded on your grading and general teaching, on your writing, as well as the publishing and presenting of that writing and its attendant research, as well as how many committees you sit on, organisations you join and contributions you bring. Bleh.

Everyone gets evaluated on their job; I should just get over myself. But I have a lot of material to gather together. I'll try to remember to take a picture of the tenure package before I deliver it. Nearly there. The letter is out to friends for scrutiny. Meanwhile, holes to punch. It may prove soothing after straining to pull meaningful but not too clever prose from my brain.

UPDATE: It also didn't help that I discovered that all of last year's course evaluations were missing. It turns out our departmental secretary has them (after assuring me this morning she did not); I would have gone to get them by now, but she's apparently left for the day.


Anonymous said...

The AtSk00lZone, er, assesses ;P:

i'm figuring the 1st paragraph You always share w/Your classes...all art/aesthetics revolves around *critical thinking*: what to leave in/out/comparisons etc....so...i guess anybody who's intelligent walks this two-way street

before assessing whether to cross the road ;D

Kim Middleton said...

Almost done! Punch those holes!

Todd Mason said...

Some people say Prof's made out of Phud/
Tenure-seeking Prof's made of muscle and blood/
Muscle and blood, punch and holes/
A cosmo that's weak and CV's that's strong/
You teach 16 credits and what do you get?/
A pile of essays and evals to vet/
St. George, don't you call me, I can't go/
I owe my soul to a committe or two...

Cranky Yankee said...

Some department secretary...humpf!

I don't sit on professor's paperwork. In fact, they come to me for copies because I keep meticulous files and they lose all their stuff.

I'm sure you'll do just fine!

C. Margery Kempe said...

Todd -- genius!

Cranky -- yeah, ain't it the truth? As you know, I worked for a long time on the other side of the desk and keep very good records. While it's always possible to lose something, I knew I didn't lose a whole year's worth of evals.

Todd Mason said...

Well, thanks. Real genius would require improving the scansion and some of the rhymes. Maybe later.

Some universities are better than others in their attention to detail. My BA graduation was officially delayed for a semester because recognition of my foreign language credits sat in one department desk or another rather than going to the Dean's office for 18 months. At George Mason University, ah, the wicked stepmother of my soul.