THE PROFESSOR GAME by Richard D. Mandell


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Anyone who's done time at college will recognize Mandell's fictitious campus types and appreciate his savvy delineation of academic exercises in futility. He knows about the perfect parking place and feminist bumper stickers (Adam Was A Rough Draft), courses whose enrollments increase when ""violence"" or ""dissent"" is added to the title, the AQ (Asshole Quotient) of certain departments, and textbook writers who ""publish and flourish."" More seriously, he believes college professors have it easy (nine-hour weeks, thirty-week years, little accountability, assorted perks) and presently are too preoccupied with palace intrigues and economic mobility to concentrate on--or even care about--teaching quality. The jacked-up pay scales and diminished teaching loads of the Sixties have combined with more current events to downgrade levels of performance, dry up the job market, and alter the nature of student-teacher exchanges--which means a reassessment is in order. Mandell, a tenured professor at the University of South Carolina, outlines ways to phase out faculty deadwood (and student deadbeats as well); his revised academe, with an enlarged teaching responsibility, would be required to show evidence of competence and commitment on a regular basis--an ambitious proposal with broad humanitarian appeal. An amusing, slightly caustic stroll down those once-hallowed halls: expect committees to discuss it, especially at the schools named within.

Pub Date: Nov. 4th, 1977
Publisher: Doubleday