Universities are dying and Covid19 may well be the straw that breaks the camel's back, but is by no means the cause. Further (higher) education is a multi-billion dollar industry that globally either produces highly intelligent graduates or highly educated fools.
The reasons for this anomaly is down to the fundamental building blocks of education and begins far earlier than the time of so called Higher Education. From primary (elementary for you folks across the pond) education system is the beginning point of teaching a human how to think for themselves and hopefully how to become a valuable and productive member of society. This is often easier said than done due to a lack of funding, limited resources and the constraints put on teachers to teach a set curriculum.
Of course, setting a mandated curriculum can be advantageous and does ensure that at the basic skills for communication in both oral and written form are instilled into the student population. The issue can arise however, that teachers are hampered from being flexible in dealing with their students needs. Sadly, this is not sufficient to provide suitable literacy to all.
The National Assessment of Adult Literacy (1992, 2003 USA) found that of the total American population a shocking 14% were found to have “below basic” literacy with an additional 29% classified as “basic” in reading ability. It should come as no surprise that 70% of the American prison population registers as having a “fourth grade” level of literacy.
In Australia the situation is less dire with a 99% literacy rate (the UK also stands at 99%). This may come down to a greater and more prolific “book culture” whereby people find reading to be an enjoyable pastime along with the great abundance of libraries as well as bookshops around the country ( and also Melbourne’s terrible weather which makes staying inside and reading a book a pretty good option).
One cannot hope to build a society of thinking and clear minded individuals without training children from a young age on how to read and write. That is the foundation of all education. When children have these skills they can be taught to interact with their world and explore in manners appropriate to their age and level of cognitive function.
There is state education, which in many counties is free of charge and mandatory until at least a primary level if not secondary level. Students mature and challenge their understanding of the world by forming beliefs through interactions, trial and error as well as experimentation. When they have reached secondary level (high school) they should be beginning to approach some level of adult cognitive function and perception although lacking experience in “real world application” of the theoretical knowledge they have learned through 12 years of formal education.
Giving students at this university entrance age the benefit of the doubt, we can safely assume that most have a level of perceptive power that will allow them to digest a variety of viewpoints and therefore take the next step in the theoretical and practical exploration of not only the world around them but also their own existence.
Here is where universities play a role. Many young people, filled with passion, desire to enter university in order to expand their educational horizons. University education is expensive even at a bachelors level (although wise choices can mean that it doesn’t have to be). This is a massive financial investment which is aimed at creating an “educational nest egg” for the future and an attempt at being more competitive in the job market especially for higher end career paths. That was what university was for……..but that is seemingly in the past.
The National Centre for Education Statistics (NCES) released statistics gathered from the periods :1993–94 and 2006–07 with the results for 2018–19 being projected using available data for expected graduations.
Counter to many radical ideologue notions of patriarchal dominance and oppression, evidence shows that females are graduating at greater rates than males. This clearly shows that for females at least, the education system has been successful (it does make one wonder whether or not those who desire “equality of outcome” would be concerned that the proportion is not 50/50, the question is rhetorical of course).
The high price and steadily decomposing quality of university higher education means that many young people are simply starting to become weary of paying exorbitant prices to institutions who do not fulfil their professed duty of providing an array of educational opportunities. While many subjects such as the hard sciences are still attracting the same core individual personality types, the Liberal Arts have practically eviscerated themselves in their ritualistic preening to radical ideological vitriol. As a social scientist, I find it greatly disturbing that Liberal Arts, the home of critique in the past, has now become the home of generation snowflake with the cognitive maturity and stamina of a land-bound blob-fish (Psychrolutes Marcidus).
Universities in Australia, Canada, the UK and the USA have become havens for radical ideologues wishing to spread their pseudo-academic drivel and essentially defrauding and indoctrinating their students with not only fallacies but also emotionally and mentally self destructive ideas. These so called academics pander to a crowd by stating what they want to hear rather than what they need to hear, or worse simply feed them enough propaganda to stay in line and then mark them down or harass them if they show the slightest dissent( we can see the Canadian example of Lindsay Shepherd).
Hence, more and more young people are turning to Technical Colleges / Polytechnics (TAFE as we call them in Australia which stands for Technical And Further Education). TAFE provides significantly lower tuition fees, give practical skills and many offer university level degrees with an integrated practical or apprenticeship as part of the course and for the majority of courses contain none of the radical ideologue drivel that would be found in a similar university course.
Thus, the phenomenon takes place where TAFE students are more competitive, less in debt and generally more content with their education than many university students. Technical Colleges often provide courses in accord with the market demand as can be seen from the graph of apprenticeships below.
This expansion of technical education is likely to continue to grow as numerous industries see the advantage of taking in new workers with demonstrated practical skills.
In Korea, there has been a significant increase in the desirability of technical college courses with many students focusing on studying shorter periods (2 or 3 years) or otherwise taking on bachelors courses in technical colleges such as nursing with a highly practical core that involves industry workplace assessment. This would naturally mean that an engineering student or computer programming student would have a more favourable chance of obtaining concrete and long-term work positions than the student who chose to study interpretive feminist crochet.
As the gangrene of university censorship continues to spread globally, one should expect that universities will start haemorrhaging students with intelligence, as these students come to see the growing futility and inflation of university education. This along with the counter-productive safe spaces and DIE policies (Diversity, Inclusion and Equity …….PS: Thanks Dr. Gad Saad for the acronym) which fail, in gargantuan manner, to provide a safer environment but serve only to coddle the intellectually infantile who should never have entered university in the first place.
If this were not enough, the potential death blow to universities comes with the enforcement of Orwellian “diversity statements” for all professors and lecturers. Previously, criteria such as these were limited to the already corrupted schools of Liberal Arts and their kin but had expanded to include the hard sciences, from biology to physics. This is the beginning of a sustained crusade on science and scientific method by removing funding from professors and scientists who do not “conform”. Professors who dare voice their opinions are not safe, as we can see from the example of Dr. Gad Saad (himself a minority) who was recently denied researching funding because in essence he would not bow to the totalitarian “diversity” policies. This merely illustrates that even those in tenure positions are far from being protected. In another example Dr. Jordan Peterson had his invitation to Cambridge rescinded because of the clamouring of radical ideologues. Such pettiness continues daily.
yet another Canadian example, in one fell swoop, not only are universities emasculated of their academic powers but colleges are also being encouraged to self-destruct through the implementation of this diversity policy. In reality, the covered factors have no impact on an individuals ability to do a job or to study a subject and lowering the bar or bending rules for the sake of inclusive rhetoric will have negative effects.
This “everyone is a winner” and “everyone gets a prize for participation” attitude may work to motivate young children but is seriously out of place in academia, especially where graduates will perform potentially dangerous work. Would you like an “almost good enough neurosurgeon”? Or perhaps “barely qualified nuclear engineer”? The only qualifying factors for these jobs should be competence and skills, not a diversity badge given out like savoury snacks at a party.
As this anti-science discourse becomes louder, and more and more professors are penalized for having an original thought, the greater and steadier the “academic migration” from universities to technical colleges will become. If rapid action is not taken to protect lecturers’, professors’ and students’ freedom of speech and freedom of inquiry, then the age of the university will truly end and free speech will be extinguished.
Destroying STEM and Female Progress with One Fell Swoop
What is your opinion? Are women as intelligent as men? Scientifically the average IQ of men and women are identical with some variation in the spread of general IQ levels over the gradient. The average however is identical. Basic instincts in thought patterns however are very different. Females have a more developed pre-frontal lobe thus being more emotionally sensitive and have a 25 percent larger corpus callosum, responsible for interhemispheric connection of the two brain hemispheres. The interhemispheric connection is a significant factor in allowing women to think of multiple things at the same time and is coupled with emotional sensitivity which are imperative for successful child rearing. Then what about the male brain? The corpus callosum is obviously not as large, which is understandable considering that males have a more linear thinking pattern thus acting as a type of “noise filter”. The pre-frontal cortex is less developed and for good reason. Studies have shown that hyper or hypo sensitivity in the male pre-frontal cortex is a strong indicator of violent or other antisocial behaviors. Males and females make up two halves of one social whole, providing perspectives that the other gender may not be capable of seeing. This is a simple biological axiom.
What on earth does all this have to do with STEM and the progress of women in Western society?
Let us consider the cold hard facts. Men and women share the same average IQ, they have very different biological and cognitive patterns, in health relationships whether personal or professional males and females respectively function has respective halves of a whole and binary unit. These are very important variables to consider. In free societies, that is to say societies that have legally encoded standards of equality for men and women (Canada, USA, Australia, UK, New Zealand, Denmark, Norway, etc), where men and women are freely permitted to choose occupations, similar gender concentrations are found in the same fields. To illustrate, the majority of nursing professionals, education professionals and customer service professionals in these lands are women, the majority of architects, builders, and IT professionals are male. What does this mean?
Men and women naturally migrate towards fields that a) are of interest, b) choose fields which are a personal “biological fit”. By now some have likely been triggered. The term “biological fit” here used does not imply that all of a certain gender will innately be suited to a specific field but rather that there is numerically greater chance that the variables based on their innate biology will lead them into a certain direction of interest which is suited to an area in which their biological processes are more likely to become a competitive advantage. What does this all have to do with women and STEM? This is the second time that this question has been asked.
We know that men and women have the same innate IQ on average, however they have different biology leading to different interests and ultimately different choices.
Still, failing to see the point?
STEM is generally referred to as male dominated. Is that a correct assumption? From a social studies perspective this seems like a very broad statement with too many variables to actually be considered factually accurate. From the outset the semantics of STEM, the abbreviation of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics shows that contrary to the notion of a single field that STEM is in fact an amalgamation of numerous fields all with multiple subfields of specialization, these subfields respectively dominated by either of the two genders. For example, take one section of science, the field of medicine. Just classifying medicine as medicine is erroneous due to the many subfields within medicine itself. Then consider two subfields, pediatric medicine and surgery. Pediatric medicine in most western lands is a female dominated subfield with surgery being a male dominated subfield. This is a classic example of gravitation toward a biological competitive advantage. Females are generally more nurturing on an emotional level making them excel in pediatric medicine, while males prefer technical fields such as surgery tend to be less about human relationships and physically more demanding. Does this mean that a female cannot be a brain surgeon? Of course not! What a preposterous notion! It simply means that there is less likelihood out of the total population of medical students that a female would choose the field of surgery. It is merely a matter of average ratios. The opposite is true for female dominated fields such as nursing with only 2~5% males in nursing.
Then what about the opening title?
There is a modern and disturbing trend which calls for the lowering of the bar to admit more women into STEM. Who are the most vocal advocates for this? Interesting, not women who are already in STEM. The most vocal advocates tend to be feminist groups who seem upset that STEM degrees are somewhat more respected and considerably more difficult to earn that degrees in “feminist interpretive dance theory”. It seems to be the greatest of paradoxes that the same groups who demand that women are equal should expect the bar to be “lowered” for women. In reality, they are stating the very opposite of the objective scientific studies that show that both sexes have the same average IQ. Semantically, lowering the bar implies that women are not intellectually capable of meeting the rigorous standards needed for STEM. However, this so called “help” by feminists is likely to have much the opposite effect. Consider the social implications.
Some of the most brilliant women that I have had the privilege of meeting or working with are professionals in STEM. Of these, the most brilliant all work in fields that are not “typically female” or “female dominant” fields of STEM namely robotics and computer engineering. All of these women made great efforts to outcompete others, to become the best in their field and to earn respect in their field. They did not ask for the bar to be lowered, rather they not only overcame that bar but cleared it by leaps and bounds. Lowering the bar is an outright insult to the efforts of such women. Further, lowering the bar creates the atmosphere of tokenism and brings about the assumption that a female only got to her position by means of being held to a lower set of expectations. Is that true equality? Is it not rather something that devalues women in STEM by assuming that they are not intellectually or cognitively capable of succeeding when there are high standards? This seems to be the modern equivalent of the 18th century expression of “it’s so simple a woman could do it.” In my humble opinion this is merely projection on the part of feminists and also shows a gross double standard. Either women are strong, intelligent and capable or they are weak victims, one cannot merely chop and change as one sees fit. I would go so far as to venture the thought that this is really internalised misogyny on the part of feminists who view females incapable of highly complex tasks. Apart from this clear oxymoron in logic, it seems pertinent to understand the opinions of women who actually work in STEM. I asked three women in the computer/engineering fields about their greatest difficulties. None of them mentioned men as being one of the problematic factors. They did however lament that lowering the bar so to speak only served to undermine the hard work and fine reputations that they had built in their industries and that prospective new employers are customers would be less likely to take their achievements seriously once a dumbing down of STEM occurred. All three expressed that the most emotional and relational difficulties actually came from other women, especially feminists in the workplace, who seemed the most threatened by their lack of virtue signaling and output of high quality work. One woman had suffered for quite some time due to a crusade against her by a feminist woman at work. When I was in high school, one of my female friends was so exceptionally skilled in science that she was invited to study at university at the age of just sixteen. She is still a brilliant scientist with expertise covering robotics, engineering and other skills. Should her efforts and skills be downplayed by giving free passes to others in her field for simply being female? This is simply illogical. Women in male dominated fields have earned their places there, they competed with men to be there. Affirmative action is not in the interests of true female scientists.
Then what is the simple solution?
It is very rare in life that complex social issues have a simple remedy. This case is however different. Rather than forcing affirmative action and lowering the bar, both of which are counterproductive, maintain the same standards for all, for that is true equality. Further, do not assume that women are incapable of entering STEM without a helping hand for that is indeed the epitome of misogynistic thought. Do not make imaginary quotas of gender in the workplace that have not scientific basis. STEM fields that are not “traditionally female” are gaining more female professionals as population growth means that the percentage of females interested in these subjects increases. In an organic model therefore, STEM is bound to naturally gain more women without the arbitrary and condescending need to lower the bar. None of the hardworking and highly intelligent women who have rightfully earned their places in STEM should be subject to having their competitive advantage undermined by movements that claim to want equality but rather are willing to hurt women to further their own ideological aims.
Clarification of Terminology: There are two genders. Sex and gender are synonyms for everyone who is free of pseudoscientific radical ideology. This article treats the terms sex and gender as synonyms based on the chromosomal construct of an individual.
The Head Professor Tells it like it is. A no-nonsense guide, not for the easily offended.
Back in the day one could get a teaching job at some universities with only a bachelor’s degree, but those days are long. So you may be wondering exactly what you will need and how to go about finding work as a professor or lecturer in Korea. Fear not brethren for I shall share this secret knowledge with thee! Here is the information that is accurate at the time of publishing. This article is aimed at those first job seekers
VISA: First things first. Laws often change as do quota’s and educational initiatives so keep checking which opportunities present themselves. Now the visa, as a professor you will likely need to qualify for an E visa however these days many universities prefer F visas (permanent resident visas) because these are far less of a rigmarole when it comes to their paperwork. An E visa also means that there is some degree of liability for the school if you turn out to be a dodgy individual. E visas bind you to a single employer and you are legally only permitted to work for them, if you work illegal for another school or even private tutor, it could well lead to your visa and contract being cancelled and in you being sent sailing back to your beloved homeland. E visas are however transferable at the end of a contract and the school that originally hired you must give permission to your new employer. They usually give permission but are not obliged to. For English roles only individuals from Australia, USA, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada and Ireland can get a visa. For other roles the requirements and accepted countries vary.
Now to education, you must have at least a master’s and a TESOL qualification or alternatively a Masters in TESOL. These days English teaching roles have become competitive and more and more universities are looking with particular favour on TESOL degrees. Does this mean that other majors are not possible? Of course not, but it will depend how you sell yourself. If you are teaching other subjects the major should be closely related to either the subjects or the specifications in the job advertisement.
In some cases, a PhD will be of benefit but not always, again it all depends on how you sell yourself. In some cases, a candidate with a masters may beat a candidate with a PhD when they show they are more suited to the role.
Most schools want 2 years’ full time experience at a college or university however there are some exceptions. With E visa the 2 years is linked to visa requirements.
Local Proof of Work Experience (경력증명서)
In Korea you will need a document called a 경력증명서, which is a legal document given by your employer to prove your work history. While most employers are honest, be sure to check the dates on the document to make sure they are correct. Here is a breakdown of how most universities interpret experience.
1 Year Full time experience at government institute for adults (Teacher training institute etc.) = 1 year experience
1 Year Full time experience at University/ College) = 1 year experience
1 Year Full time experience at High School/ Middle School = 6 months experience (some schools accept this and some do not)
Foreign Proof of Experience
Foreign public school experience is counted as well as institutes of higher education or training institutes for adults. Here are the details that your potential employer (university) will likely be looking for.
1. Full Name
2. Name of position
3. Clear statement of whether work was part time or full time
4. Dates clearly marked (from (Date) to (Date))
5. Date that the document was issued
6. Signature or Stamp or both (Having the document on the institute letter head is highly desirable, the more official and formal it looks the better)
7. A brief description of duties could be helpful.
Make sure your CV is logical and readable. Include a professional looking photo. Long hair on men and tattoos will count against you as culturally these things are somewhat frowned upon. Especially in regard to visible tattoos which in many Asian cultures are associated with organized crime. Earrings for men are also frowned upon. A photograph in a CV is that legal? Yes, and not uncommon in Asia. Remember first impressions count, even if the photo is not taken by a professional, make sure you look presentable.
Not many people that I have seen applying for jobs have much research on their CV’s. Let me tell you that when I see a CV from an applicant from a university that isn’t famous but they have research publications and are active in conferences, it immediately draws my attention. It tells me, this person is attempting to continue their academic career seriously and this person is likely to be a better teacher as a result. I don’t care if you are white, black, Asian, pink or purple if I see good research, I am going to put you on the top of the pile. Am I right in saying so? It is conceivable that I may be wrong but the likelihood of the individual making an effort in their classes is higher than average. Effort means happy students, happy students means more reputation, more reputation means more student flow in the future. It also means I am going to have less work sorting out problems and such if I hire competent individuals. If I as a fairly laid back Head of Department feel this way about research, how do the top schools feel? Much more pedantic let me assure you.
But I have no research publications I hear you say. Not to worry, think of some subjects you think you would like to research and include these in your cover letter. That way the reader will feel you have potential in the long run even though you might not have had the opportunity to publish.
TIP: Be nice to the administration staff, always show manners and write clearly. Assistants are the most important first step to pass, make a good impression and you will have passed the first hurdle. Don’t nag or call/email excessively, in Korean culture it doesn’t look good. Let them know you are interested but not desperate, it’s a college/university not a charity.
Networking is a great way to get a foot in the door. Try to contact folks that work at the university and ask about it, don’t stalk them. Remember being professional is going to take you much further than anything else, never play the race or gender card as this can leave you burning bridges. Knowing people who work at the same university can be a great help as some colleges and universities sometimes ask professors to recommend someone trustworthy when positions need to be filled in emergency situations. Bear in mind that the first time may not be a success. In my case, even with this dashing face (if I do say so myself), I applied twice at the same college before I got a call back.
Give yourself some professional online visibility, why do you think I made this site? It acts as a sort of unofficial CV and is just a click away.
Like any job market it can be disheartening to apply and not a call back. Just give up then? No! If you think you may be doing something wrong, then why not get a second opinion on your CV and covering letter. This is a very competitive job market but not impossible.
Oh but I am black/ Asian so it isn’t going to be easy to get a job……. Blab bla bla. Right, it isn’t going to be easy, so are you ready to stop feeling sorry for yourself? Like previously stated, many universities look at other factors. I have the least Anglophone name you could think of but still it doesn’t matter. The most important things are whether or not the CV photo looks like you are a serious professional and second does this CV tell me the person can teach? There are quite a few black professors, Arab professors and Asian-America/Canadian/Australian professors all around Korea so it really is not as if they are only after white faces. With that said statistically white blonde females are the most competitive group. Is life fair? No, let’s deal with it. My college hires about %35 Asian-Americans, so keep looking. He (or she) that seeks will indeed find….(eventually).
Type of College/University
I often hear, “I applied at such and such famous university and didn’t get a call back”. Here is my question to you, “Would the top universities in your country accept you as a professor there?”. If the answer is no, then by those standards ask yourself why a top University here would accept you. You are barking up the wrong tree. Is it conceivable that such a school might accept you in the future? Sure, why not. However, remember this article is aimed at helping you land your first job and well, beggars can be choosers. Go for smaller or countryside colleges/universities outside of the main Hubs and gain experience first, build your network and skills and then move on to higher ranking institutes. Never burn bridges, always stay professional, always show you are an academic.
The interview can be nerve wracking and often consists of you being placed at the end of a long table and being ploughed with questions by the college/university president and heads of departments, some universities may conduct this process with only the relative heads of department and a few other professors. Get ready for all sorts of questions ranging from experience and suitability to downright rude. Why rude? There is a reason. They want to see if you will stay calm in a stressful situation. This question might be asked at the end when you are tired so as to provoke the worst in you. At this point you have to ask, am I a professional or am I filled with pride? Professionalism beats pride every time, be professional, more than likely you will be offered the job.
Get out there, apply, get the job. Do it, do it now.