Outsourcing Academia

Not a single person in academia I talked to understands how saying that we can teach as effectively online will lead to the outsourcing of our jobs. The threat of outsourcing is not discussed in professional meetings or publications. Instead, everybody blathers on stupidly about “anti-racism” and “whiteness.” And makes plan to continue teaching online permanently.

I went out with a visiting scholar from Nigeria yesterday. When I told him about the job conditions of American academics, his jaw dropped. He had no idea such paradise existed. There are so many talented, wonderful people on the planet who would slaughter for what we have.

And we are pissing it all away because it’s too much of a hardship to show up on campus for a couple of hours a couple of times a week.

4 thoughts on “Outsourcing Academia

  1. “outsourcing is not discussed in professional meetings or publications”
    I had an online… interaction with a teacher or three determined not to go back into the classroom until…. I dunno rainbows replace clouds or something…
    Anyhoo… I asked if they’re going to withhold their greatest asset (physical presence) why pay US wages when there are probably lots of qualified teachers in India and the Philippines who could do their job much cheaper…
    They said something about standards and training and I asked if they’re claiming non-western countries can’t train teachers?
    I was essentially accused of wanting to murder them…

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  2. It is pretty unbelievable how this is not addressed. It’s apparently taboo because:
    – the armies of low-paid people who teach online because that’s the only choice they have have to at least be told they are doing a good job
    – people have bought the idea that online means accessibility to the poor
    – people are afraid of being called technophobes
    It amazes me.

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  3. Look to be honest I really don’t like most of the people who agglomerate in universities, and certainly don’t like some of the entitled attitudes held by some lecturers and professors who think that they have some kind of God given right to preach to young people forever.

    That being said, I wonder if a reasonable solution might not be to have lecturers produce both online and in person material, which would mean that lecturers would be responsible for producing a low volume of very high quality recorded material that is supplemented by in person teaching geared towards higher interaction, more prac work, more Q & A etc.

    Since the operation of universities in the US is largely controlled by government policy, the above could be produced as a matter of policy ie the US Government making various programs and grants conditional to lecturers in universities actually accumulating and building a recorded knowledge base the purpose of which is to be a scaffold or trellis to higher value in person teaching.

    Not to mention doing the above makes it a lot more difficult for political ideologues to take over universities and basically destroy societies, which seems to be happening over there.

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    1. Here’s the thing, though. That high-quality recorded material already exists. But it has zero effect. The absolute majority of people don’t learn on their own. MUCs conducted by Harvard and MIT have something like 0,01% passing rate. The only way for the absolute majority of people to learn anything is from in-person contact in small groups where everybody gets individual attention from the teacher. That’s the only way. Everything else is a major waste of time.

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