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Job Talk

Now that I can breathe: so far one of the most fascinating stories of the past two weeks is Mark Liberman’s Crockus files at Language Log (begin here, go there, turn left, take a detour, jog a bit, and rejoin the highway; or see Mind Hacks). Liberman’s tracking of pop psychology’s (frequently false) claims about gender difference goes a ways back. That Hodgins seems to have not only invented a region of the brain but also a doctor to name that region, all in the pursuit of rather bogus claims about genders, after is really quite remarkable. Unfortunately, K-12 education is ripe for such crockusery. In professional development, for example, there’s a cottage industry of consultants, often hired by district superintendents and curriculum developers, who promise easy-to-implement systems for analyzing curricula, creating good teachers out of bad, and ultimately raising student test scores. They travel around the country giving talks and selling handouts. What they’re usually selling, however, is a methodical process of analysis, something any district could develop independently, given decent judgment and time to research—after all, best practices in education don’t vary that widely. (Time to research is what teachers don’t have, of course.) From there it’s a very small leap indeed to selling a reason, no matter how shoddy or manufactured the research for that reason so long as it supports a popular stereotype, for why the system works.

Not entirely unrelated, it’s time to apply for a new job.



Tell me about it… I’m keeping even later hours crafting crap to hock my wares.

Any fields you think interesting… and, I will email my publisher contact.

Most fields are interesting; I’m more concerned with getting a foot in the door on a payscale that isn’t entry-level. My current job is more nearly manuscript-track than acquisitions, though of course acquisitions is where the fun is. Most dreamy is a litmag, but for that, it’s Mission: Publish.

Upon moving, will you get more time to, you know… finish?

Could it be that all three hermits will be on the move at the same time? I haven’t figured out if I will be applying for academic-type jobs (or any jobs) or not, but I will definitely be not for long doing what I’m doing now. Like the mysterious BG, I am working quickly to get things in press and under review (1 in each category so far this semester, with hopes for another under review in a couple months)…just in case.

Come to think of it, I resolve that we should form a company.

I’m at a breathing point myself, having just given birth to a big piece of scholarly crap after one week of labor.

The popularization of neuroscience, unfortunately, is becoming the new snake-oil medicine. The new St. John’s Wort. Lots of people seem to be picking up on this nowadays.

Move to England! Everyone! To hell with America!

4: This company you speak of. You have mentioned it before. Given her distress at work, I’m pretty sure K’s all in, regardless. Another option besides venture capital and acting is to enslave BG’s as a chef and start a restaurant (i.e., a Waffle House franchise)!

5: I don’t have a passport.

Also, now that it’s officially announced: congrats to JH!

Congrats, JH!

Now if anyone has an idea of how I can procure enough funding to quit my job, please let me know.

congratulations to JH!

now in 10 years, he, too, can be trying to find another line of work!

and he can join our company!

strangely neuroscience and the uk was a topic that came up recently in my world. but not sure L30,000 is enough to feed the fam, even in the southwest of england?

(but serious about the congratulations to JH!)

Thanks everyone.


£30,000 is $60,000. As a family man, you wouldn’t be living large or anything, but you could probably manage. Taxes would be higher, but healthcare is free, so it probably just about balances out.

thanks for the advice. i have re-read the position description, and i am thinking that they wouldn’t want me. but i am definitely still looking at the uk and am 90% sure i am numbering my days at my present position.

How can we help crank it up to 95% ?

get mb a really interesting job. or, get me a really interesting nearby job that has a start date of June 2008. or, get me a really really interesting job that would pay enough to be a one-income family in a different locale.

it sounds like cmb are thinking the same as we, only i’m not yet going to leave the guild of underpaid

“Zookeeper” would be an awesome, especially hanging around polar bears. I really think you should look into it.

zookeeper might work for me. i’ll put it on the list.

I will join the company, provided I can telecommute.