Monday, August 06, 2007

Politics

According to Scoop, Paul Buchanan has been dismissed from the University of Auckland citing a complaint from a student who failed to hand her assignment on time.

Update: here's a copy of the email sent to the student.

And of course Farrar has now mentioned the case.

5 comments:

Rich said...

I saw this a week ago on Ryan Sproull's blog. Haven't seen any more outside Scoop and some comments. Apparently it was over the tone of an email to a well connected student from the UAE.

Sounds suspiciously like it was for endangering an income stream. There are accusations of racism, but really, racism is thinking badly of a whole community, not one particular person.

Pam said...

Ah. I heard thru the grapevine last week. It's quite sad, I heard he was a really good lecturer.

Diving into the wreck said...

this was the first i heard....and yes Buchanan was a good lecturer now wait a brillant lectuer...The politics department and University of Auckland has just lost one of its finest.

i think theres a petition going around at uni for support etc etc.

Craig Ranapia said...

Sounds suspiciously like it was for endangering an income stream. There are accusations of racism, but really, racism is thinking badly of a whole community, not one particular person.

Well, it was all over National Radio and to be honest I'd really reserve judgement either way. I've heard Buchanan is a very good teacher, but I've also heard from former students who have no personal or political axe to grind that his *cough* interpersonal relationship skills often left much to be desired.

AFAIK, Buchanan (with the support of the Association of University Staff) is making an unjustified dismissal claim against the university and therefore are declining to make any public comment.

Rich said...

I do think it's an problem in universities generally that academics are expected to teach, even when it's not their forte. (And they aren't selected for aptitude as a teacher or even trained very well).

A lot of the staff at my (top-tier UK) university were clearly not into the teaching aspects. Our head of department took it on himself to teach Computer Science 101 and was *six months late* marking the assesments.