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A [Whiny] essay on the impact of the tenure process | Inside Higher Ed

Essay on the impact of the tenure process | Inside Higher Ed.

Tenure Brain
April 28, 2014

The recent release of the Boise State University survey on faculty working habits suggests that faculty members work an average of 61 hours per week, or 50 percent more than a normal work week. The release of this study coincides with yet another listicle that describes the job of university professor as sabbatical-rich, summers-off, and stress-free. Hardly.

The tenure process is one that is certainly the opposite of stress-free. And before you cry “tenuresplaining,” let me suggest that the inhumanity of the tenure process might well be just another example on the spectrum of academic pain that includes failed job searches and the vagaries suffered by many contingent academic laborers in higher education. The hurt comes from the same place, my friends.

For the two years I was going through the process of seeking tenure, I pretty much lost my shit. It started the day I turned in my tenure materials. Suddenly, everything was out of my control. Up until then, my tenure case rested on my research productivity and, to a much lesser extent, my teaching adequacy. So as long as I was publishing in peer-reviewed journals (as articles are the norm in my field) and getting decent teaching evaluations — both of which were somewhat under my control and which I did successfully — I felt secure. And then the second I lost control, Tenure Brain took over.

Read more: http://www.insidehighered.com/advice/2014/04/28/essay-impact-tenure-process#ixzz30BmkbmkL
Inside Higher Ed