Architectural Blatherations

How to be a Lazy Academic

top rule

The Good Oil

Some part-time academics do more than fair share of work. But many others exploit the academic system to the full.

The lazy part-timer

Teaching, research and service to the community are the three time-honoured duties of the academic. Teaching, in all its aspects, accounts for about one-third of the full-time academic's time.

Think about it: how many hours does your prof {don} spend actually lecturing or in the studio. A few hours a week for a few weeks a year (in Australia, for example, six hours of teaching a week is considered a full workload). For the rest of society, a working week is some 40 hours. And a university teaching year is about 26 weeks, out of a working year of 44 to 48 weeks (depending on where you come from).

A small part of the rest of the time is meant to be spent in service to the community. All the rest should be taken up by research: perhaps about half the academic's work life. Architectural academics have never been comfortable this important aspect of academia, and many struggle to maintain the research output that the rest of the university considers normal. The part-time architectural academic often does not even bother. Someone on a half-time position turns up to give his or her few hours of teaching or studio and produces not a whit of scholarship.

Architecture professors are not bright, not well-educated, and not well-read; and rely on their class position to overawe their students. They would underperform at any community college. Confessing their own intellectual inadequacies to themselves, they were blinded by anyone who can claim a modicum of instruction in any discipline outside of architecture. A classic study is the swindle of Prof. Robert Gutman, faux sociologist.

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