Does it matter if a lecturer has a PhD

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Samjourno
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Hi, I'm researching an article which is concerned with the validity of the PhD in the modern university. On many courses now students may be lectured by a lecturer who has 'industry experience', but doesn't have a PhD. This seems to happen particularly in media production, journalism and business courses. Do students tend to feel reassured if a lecturer has a PhD - do they seem to be better at teaching in a University environment? Has anyone found that the 'industry experience' has meant that they didn't really live up to expectations. Maybe a lecturer couldn't really help with essay writing or the more traditional elements of an undergraduate course?I'm interested in general thoughts on this in order to get a feel for the mood.All the bestS
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ecolier
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'course it does.

PhD, or you're not teaching me

/s
Last edited by ecolier; 1 month ago
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BabyStitch
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Depends on the lecturer, some have PhDs others are working towards one. It depends on the uni honestly
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University of Portsmouth Student Rep
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(Original post by Samjourno)
Hi, I'm researching an article which is concerned with the validity of the PhD in the modern university. On many courses now students may be lectured by a lecturer who has 'industry experience', but doesn't have a PhD. This seems to happen particularly in media production, journalism and business courses. Do students tend to feel reassured if a lecturer has a PhD - do they seem to be better at teaching in a University environment? Has anyone found that the 'industry experience' has meant that they didn't really live up to expectations. Maybe a lecturer couldn't really help with essay writing or the more traditional elements of an undergraduate course?I'm interested in general thoughts on this in order to get a feel for the mood.All the bestS
Hi!

I find it helpful when there is a lecturer that has industry experience, as they usually provide more detail and help with career paths. There is usually another lecturer though that runs the module alongside someone who has a Ph.D., which is more helpful when it comes to essays and assignments. I personally feel the combination works best, especially if the industry experienced person is a guest speaker and has experience in taking university lectures, as they know relevant information that needs to be said for your module.

I hope this helps!
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black tea
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Having a PhD and being able to teach are very different and unrelated things...
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Samjourno
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(Original post by ecolier)
'course it does.

PhD, or you're not teaching me

/s
Okay I thought students might feel like this. So you see the PhD as a kind of quality control. Thanks for that very useful. If you know anyone who could give a view it would be much appreciated
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Samjourno
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(Original post by BabyStitch)
Depends on the lecturer, some have PhDs others are working towards one. It depends on the uni honestly
Thanks and yes it does. It's very nuanced. I guess the thing I'm really thinking is whether students still see a PhD as a mark of some quality
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Samjourno
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(Original post by University of Portsmouth Student Rep)
Hi!

I find it helpful when there is a lecturer that has industry experience, as they usually provide more detail and help with career paths. There is usually another lecturer though that runs the module alongside someone who has a Ph.D., which is more helpful when it comes to essays and assignments. I personally feel the combination works best, especially if the industry experienced person is a guest speaker and has experience in taking university lectures, as they know relevant information that needs to be said for your module.

I hope this helps!
Chloe - Official Student Rep
Thanks Chloe yes it is very helpful. Originally the industry expert really was a guest speaker but things changed.

I imagine most students would expect a lecturer to be working towards a PhD.
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Samjourno
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Ok

(Original post by black tea)
Having a PhD and being able to teach are very different and unrelated things...
True . Thankfully both PhDs and indistry experts are required to get a teaching qual these days. Not to say that would make a difference
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Anonymous #1
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Yes. I chose my university because we have lecturers with PhDs.
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Samjourno
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Yes. I chose my university because we have lecturers with PhDs.
Aha! So a marketing boon for the universities who put PhDs in primacy . Thanks for your feedback . Very helpful
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Samjourno)
Aha! So a marketing boon for the universities who put PhDs in primacy . Thanks for your feedback . Very helpful
Tbf they've all published many papers. They didn't get their PhD and stop. Some have published books.
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xsowmix
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(Original post by Samjourno)
Okay I thought students might feel like this. So you see the PhD as a kind of quality control. Thanks for that very useful. If you know anyone who could give a view it would be much appreciated
oh no I think ecolier was just being sarcastic. Having a PhD does not mean you will be a good teacher. Not that I have any experience but just my opinion.
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Samjourno
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Tbf they've all published many papers. They didn't get their PhD and stop. Some have published books.
Exactly. To get a PhD is quite a sacrifice and generally PhDs will carry on publishing and take very seriously the relationship between research and pedagogy.

I'll post the finished article here and I think you'll get my drift.
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Plantagenet Crown
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I guess in principle it shouldn't matter if they don't have a PhD as long as they can teach. In practice however they virtually all do have PhDs, at least in my subject. Every single one of my lecturers had doctorates and that must be true of the majority of lecturers across all fields.
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Plantagenet Crown
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(Original post by Plantagenet Crown)
I guess in principle it shouldn't matter if they don't have a PhD as long as they can teach. In practice however they virtually all do have PhDs, at least in my subject. Every single one of my lecturers had doctorates and that must be true of the majority of lecturers across all fields.
Bear in mind that most lecturers are in their profession for the research, not the teaching. It's just that they're contractually bound to provide at least some teaching if they're employed by a university. Given the choice I don't think many lecturers would actually elect to teach.
Last edited by Plantagenet Crown; 1 month ago
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marple
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(Original post by Samjourno)
Hi, I'm researching an article which is concerned with the validity of the PhD in the modern university. On many courses now students may be lectured by a lecturer who has 'industry experience', but doesn't have a PhD. This seems to happen particularly in media production, journalism and business courses. Do students tend to feel reassured if a lecturer has a PhD - do they seem to be better at teaching in a University environment? Has anyone found that the 'industry experience' has meant that they didn't really live up to expectations. Maybe a lecturer couldn't really help with essay writing or the more traditional elements of an undergraduate course?I'm interested in general thoughts on this in order to get a feel for the mood.All the bestS
Depends on the degree. History (my degree) absolutely. Accountancy (my job) not necessarily - industry experience far more useful.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Samjourno)
Exactly. To get a PhD is quite a sacrifice and generally PhDs will carry on publishing and take very seriously the relationship between research and pedagogy.

I'll post the finished article here and I think you'll get my drift.
A uni close to me doesn't have lecturers in my subject with PhDs and it's a pretty dire university.
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Samjourno
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(Original post by Plantagenet Crown)
I guess in principle it shouldn't matter if they don't have a PhD as long as they can teach. In practice however they virtually all do have PhDs, at least in my subject. Every single one of my lecturers had doctorates and that must be true of the majority of lecturers across all fields.
I think in the academy it might be something we could consider a licence to practice . I agree that industry experts might be great academics but I'm getting the feeling that students feel that the PhD shows a committment to the idea of university education. I suspect we would agree that university lecturers should be trying to quickly qualify as PhDs.
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(Original post by Samjourno)
I think in the academy it might be something we could consider a licence to practice . I agree that industry experts might be great academics but I'm getting the feeling that students feel that the PhD shows a committment to the idea of university education. I suspect we would agree that university lecturers should be trying to quickly qualify as PhDs.
Lecturers without PhDs are teachers. In a university I expect better than that.
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