By Thomas Sowell
Sowell pulls no punches as he candidly describes the interior and outer workings of rankings of yank faculties and universities, great and small. He supplies equivalent cognizance to big courses, monetary reduction, and the tutorial setting.
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Additional resources for Choosing a college: a guide for parents and students
Academics deemed ‘non-research-active’ may have to justify time devoted to writing. Most academics and professionals will have no dedicated writing time anyway. Whatever your starting point, it is possible to develop your knowledge, understanding and skills – without wanting to get into the debate about whether or not that means developing your intellectual capacity – through writing for publication. Writing provides one of the few opportunities to TURGID WRITING 25 develop. The purpose of your academic writing is to persuade readers to think about your ideas, at least, but it is also to develop those ideas.
However, there may also be disadvantages for new writers, and over the longer term this should not be your sole strategy: ‘Those without sole publications are not rewarded for their team-playing skills’ (Blaxter et al. 1998a: 144). BARRIERS TO WRITING 33 Barriers to writing The greatest problem I can see for academics in post is not finding the motivation to write but the time amidst all the pressure and heavy workloads of teaching and administration. (Anonymous reviewer) This reviewer is right: time is definitely, absolutely and across all the disciplines the inhibiting factor for academic writers.
I do not in any way want to make light of what is a difficult journey – from not writing to regular publication. In fact, I would argue that there are some situations where the barriers are, in fact, insurmountable: anyone with a family and/or others to care for, anyone going through a break-up or a 34 WHY WRITE FOR ACADEMIC JOURNALS? bereavement, or anyone who is ill should, in my view, let themselves off the hook for a while. Having said that, some people would find such a new challenge gave them just what they needed to take them out of themselves, to look beyond their situations and to move forward in their lives.