Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Are Female Students A Perk Of The Job?

Carl Sagan said "Knowing a great deal is not the same as being smart" and Terence Kealey, of Vice Chancellor of the University of seems to be living proof.

He claims that Female Students are a perk of male lecturers job!

What an outrageous thing to say. Notwithstanding the fact that we are all adults and we know all about the birds and the bees. A university is a professional learning environment, where students are 'learners' not targets of lustful attention.

He has clearly had a humour bypass, and has been entirely gullible in regard to the impact of his 'laddish' statements. This has entitled him to a free entry in my Jackasses Squidoo lens. You can vote for him in the Jackasses roll of fame now!

He wrote:
"Normal girls - more interested in abs than in labs, more interested in pecs than specs, more interested in triceps than tripos - will abjure their lecturers for the company of their peers, but nonetheless, most male lecturers know that, most years, there will be a girl in class who flashes her admiration and who asks for advice on her essays. What to do?

"Enjoy her! She's a perk."

The damage this type of utterance can have to the student / lecturer trust is immense. Does the student now think they have achieved the grade through academic achievement or through personal appearance? What will future employers think? Might they begin to think 'is she really qualified?'

How do male lecturers behave now? Will any sort of familiarity be construed as a 'come on'? Might they over-compensate and mark more harshly to avoid accusations of 'babe-ism'? Will any glance at a female student lead them vulnerable to a raft of accustations?

I think Doctor Lurve should step down.

Much has been researched in this area
Physical Attractiveness and academic performance
Sexual harassement on a university campus
Expectations, Impressions, and Judgments of Physically Attractive Students

Interested in become a student at a British University? check out...
Choosing A British University


  1. I am a substitute teacher and education student. My recent situation is similar, though the roles were reversed. As a young male teacher, one needs to be prepared for how to deal with the situations involving professionalism with students. Recently, a group of young girls crossed that line. In the school of education you are taught how to handle these situations, but this was the first time I had to use these lessons in the professional setting. At first it caught me off-guard. Not wanting to be biased toward the girls, I gave them the same courtesy I would any student and engaged in conversation, telling them lightly that my first name is irrelevent. They can simply call me "Mr. Prior." When a question about facebook question arose, I was more startled. Not wanting to be cold, I told them "yes, I have facebook." Many teachers and professional adults have facebook; I figured there is nothing wrong with telling them that. At the end of the period, I heard one girl say to her friend "you think I should ask him to hang out with us outside of school?" Another friend responded, "you can get in trouble saying stuff like that." At that point I found myself in a situation where I could not treat them equally in courtesy, and had to be curt with every encounter I had with these students through the rest of the day. Phrases like "where are you headed?" "get to work" and "have a good afternoon" where the answers I gave them whenever they asked me questions that breached the personal barrier.

    This is simply how the profession is. That is no excuse, however, for a university professor to treat students differently based on gender or attractiveness, especially when the student is paying money to learn content and professionalism. I agree that some consequence needs to exist for this professor acting in such an unprofessional manner.

  2. Great post! This is very helpful. I'm sure I'd visit your site more often. Anyway, you can drop by my favorite online hang out too, at UK Student Community. Thanks!

  3. Thanks for your post Seb, people should check out your site too. I've linked it to my Squidoo Lens too