Letters to the Editors

Lecturetally.com supposed to be a ‘useful tool for students’

Dear Editors:
Re: “Why we skip” (Journal, October 20, 2006).

The declaration posed in the Journal that lecturetally.com was an example of students finding a way to get what they need without going to class is wrong. Going to class is vital in achieving an education, and the whole point of being at university in the first place.

I built lecturetally.com as a useful tool for students—not as a way to get out of going to class.

It is a resource that allows for an increased flow of information and the collaboration of ideas. To downgrade this website as a reason to skip class is missing the point. The goal of university is to
get a great education and a tool that helps achieve this can only be seen as positive for everyone.

Brian Maxwell
ArtSci ’08 lecturetally.com founder

Active research necessary for tenure-track position

Dear Editors:
Re: “Researchers or Teachers?” (Journal, October 24, 2006).

Chemical engineering professor Andrew Daugulis is somewhat misleading in his assertion that “adjunct professors are not active researchers” and that therefore the University’s growing use of adjunct professors deprives students of a crucial research component in their classes.

Especially in the humanities, the vast majority of adjunct professors, myself included, are actively seeking permanent tenure-track employment, and therefore it is crucial that we stay every bit as “current” and “engaging” as our tenured and tenure-track colleagues.

If an adjunct professor fails to engage actively in research and publishing, he or she can simply forget about securing even so much as an interview, let alone a tenure-track position. Furthermore, many adjunct professors undertake such research in the absence of the prospect of sabbatical and without the luxury of lavish external funding. Far from “missing out” on anything, therefore, students who take courses taught by adjunct professors often implicitly receive valuable object lessons in work
ethics and time management on top of the material on the class syllabus.

Robert G. May
Assistant professor (adjunct),
English department

In defence of Ignatieff

Dear Editors:
Re: Letter, “Ignatieff editorial sparks debate” (Journal, October 24, 2006).

Perhaps when Douglas Treilhard, Alex Goldberg, and Kayley Edwards earn their MAs from Cambridge, their PhDs from Harvard and are appointed as codirectors of the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, they might have something insightful or valid to say about Michael Ignatieff ’s views on foreign policy as opposed to a canned, one-sizefits- all condemnation to a highly informed criticism of Israel’s war policy.

While there are, as Treilhard contends, many regrettable and uninformed negative views on Israel’s foreign policy, there must be a clear delineation between intolerable anti-Semitic views on Israeli state actions and the views of a brilliant scholar who has devoted his life to human rights and studying global political issues.

Michael Ceci
ArtSci ’09

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