Prof: Academic rigor reinforces ‘power and privilege’

“Scientific knowledge itself is gendered, raced, and colonizing.”   



The professor is at Purdue, no slouch of a school which makes this story particularly troubling.

The professor believes that academic rigor reinforces “white male heterosexual privilege.”

Basically she is saying that only “white male heterosexuals’ are capable of really hard academic work. Which is obvious bull. But in the name of outcome based – whatever – we should do away with objective standards and the crazy notion that academic achievement should be worked for and that insight and intellect should be celebrated. No, no, that just keeps parts of society down.

I don’t know about you but I want my structural engineers and my brain surgeons to have excelled in very rigorous academic atmospheres prior to getting their degrees.

(From Campus Reform)

Donna Riley, who previously taught engineering at Smith College for 13 years, published an article in the most recent issue of the journal Engineering Education, arguing that academic rigor is a “dirty deed” that upholds “white male heterosexual privilege.”

Originally from Smith College – knew it. What a waste of daddy’s money that school has been for decades.

Defining rigor as “the aspirational quality academics apply to disciplinary standards of quality,” Riley asserts that “rigor is used to maintain disciplinary boundaries, with exclusionary implications for marginalized groups and marginalized ways of knowing.”…

…To fight this, Riley calls for engineering programs to “do away with” the notion of academic rigor completely, saying, “This is not about reinventing rigor for everyone, it is about doing away with the concept altogether so we can welcome other ways of knowing. Other ways of being. It is about criticality and reflexivity.”

“We need these other ways of knowing to critique rigor, and to find a place to start to build a community for inclusive and holistic engineering education,” she concludes.

Yes, yes, there’s lots of room for error in engineering. We should all consider the different ways of learning etc etc etc when we figure out who to hire as rocket scientists.

Again, you KNOW the Chinese are laughing their asses off when they read stories like the one above. How decadent and just plain stupid has America become to indulge in such nonsense?

Click here for the article.