• Isis the Scientist wrote a new post, Inside Higher Ed Can Fuck Right Off…, on the site Skepchick 2 months, 3 weeks ago

    I am writing this blog post during my video office hours. This is what I look like.

    Two students have already popped in with questions. I have not showered and I am wearing a track jacket. I have no makeup on. […]

    • Not only is everything you say here true, but the article is also bad education. The byline you quote:
      “In these trying times, the last thing that students need to see is their professional, highly educated professor falling apart at the seams.”
      Is simply wrong. 25 years ago, when anything I knew was current, the theory of cognitive apprenticeship was well-known; students don’t need to see you produce pristine and shiny solutions out of thin air like magic, they need to see you tackle a real problem, wander down a few false paths, even struggle a little, and watch how you work it out. That doesn’t just apply to your subject matter, it applies to the life lessons on the side. Who could take seriously anyone who didn’t seem profoundly affected by this crisis? So let them see you struggle with this a bit too… and then let them see how you beat it.

    • I’ve been wearing only pyjamas for 3 weeks, and my hair calls into question the validity of natural selection. (There’s no way any species has ever needed THIS.) My camera is always on the work, not myself, but my students have certainly been able to see the racing car pyjama pants that my mommy sewed for me, whenever my legs come into view. And it clearly hasn’t bothered anyone. We’re just glad that any teaching can still continue at all.

      Some of my students are struggling to afford to stay connected, and that’s a far bigger worry. But it’s also a worry most educators are powerless to do much about. Perhaps, for some, this obsession with appearance is just a way to pretend they still have control over the chaos.

    • *Applause.gif*

      Not only is it misogynist, it’s ableist AF. The fact that I am still FUNCTIONING as an educator despite raging anxiety disorder set off by *waves hands around* all this should be the highlight of my tenure package.

    • Thank you for this. It is awesome and totally right on.

    • Really, if you’re trying to get a degree, the only profs whose looks you need to worry about are in cosmetology. Heck, I get miffed if a company I’m working with has a dress code.

    • That article is completely misogynist! Why are women still judged on their physical appearance and adherence to gender stereotypes?

      Sadly, I know professorial women for whom Kiser is accurate. These women refuse to let their students see them with a hair out of place. Some of them won’t use the (free) uni gym because they don’t want students to see them “like that,” as though “that” was something shameful. They maintain their professorial persona at all times. They must be exhausted. OTOH, I didn’t care about maintaining any persona. I dressed to adhere to my uni’s dress code (!) and I certainly passed as faculty. Students didn’t seem to care how we dressed. After all, it’s a uni, not a fashion show.

      I frequently saw my current and former students in public away from uni. I usually wear sweatpants or shorts and t-shirts and old sneakers; maybe I even combed my hair that day. When I’m in a grocery store, for example, I’m not being a professional. I’m off-duty, so to speak. Until reading Kiser’s nonsense, I never considered my appearance “unprofessional.” I was always glad to see students. Again, they didn’t care how I looked.

      I think it’s good for students to see their instructors as relatable. As HUMAN as they are. Isis, your students seeing you discombobulated lets them know that we are all in this together, that we all are affected, and we all are doing the best we can. I think that’s reassuring.