What Teachers Learn from Experience

Credit: iStock.com/Lisa-Blue
Credit: iStock.com/Lisa-Blue
What qualifications does it take to be considered for a faculty position at a four-year college or university? Guy Boysen (2021) recently answered that question for the field of psychology. He surveyed 267 faculty, asking them to describe the minimal research and teaching qualifications needed by those applying for jobs at baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral institutions. Even with likely variation in the qualifications across disciplines, it’s still instructive to consider a case in point, and of course, of most interest to us are the minimum teaching qualifications: two years of teaching experience. That’s it. Boysen notes that about 60 percent of doctoral programs in psychology offer a “college teaching course,” but having taken such a course was “not an essential job qualification at any type of institution.” Boysen calls that “an unfortunate blemish for the profession” (p. 46).

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