"Your teaching is trivial, anyone can do it”.
After 35 years of academic life as a scientist teaching Microbiology and Biochemistry in a Russell Group university, this is exactly what a ‘senior’ manager told me as I negotiated my ‘smooth’ career exit when I decided to retire early. I left at the end of 2016 after spending a year working part-time whilst winding down my research group. I offered to continue with some teaching over that time simply to help colleagues out. But that was the response to my offer and my teaching ended more abruptly than expected in the summer of 2015.
How had things come to this?
The remark was probably a careless throw away comment but it was made by someone more ‘senior’ to me who had comparatively little experience of teaching undergraduate students. It betrayed an attitude that had been gaining ground for some time. I wondered how things c…