Thursday, November 10, 2016

AAUP Warns of Historic Threat to Academic Freedom Posed by Trump

The American Association of University Professors warned in a statement on Wednesday that many college faculty members fear that President-elect Donald J. Trump “may be the greatest threat to academic freedom since the McCarthy period.”

The organization’s first public statement on the election cited statements made by Mr. Trump and policies he has proposed that it said would threaten academic freedom.

“His remarks about minorities, immigrants, and women have on some campuses had a chilling effect on the rights of students and faculty members to speak out,” it said.

The AAUP also took issue with Mr. Trump’s lack of “clear and detailed policy proposals for higher education.” It urged him and Congress to listen to faculty members and educational leaders when devising  higher-education policy.

READ THE STATEMENT

Friday, November 4, 2016

Can Colleges Train Professors to Steer Clear of Microaggressions?

Tiffany C. Martínez, a sociology major at Suffolk University, made waves last week when she blogged about an experience in which she said her professor had called her out in front of her classmates and accused her of copying parts of an assignment. Ms. Martínez said she was particularly upset that her professor had circled the word "hence" and written in the margin, "This is not your language."

Though she said she understood that her professor was questioning whether the paper was plagiarized and probably didn’t intend for the comment to carry a racial tone, the words still hurt.

The incident is a clear example of a perceived microaggression, and prompts a question: How can institutions ensure instructors enjoy academic freedom while also pushing them to be mindful of students’ racial backgrounds and experiences?

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