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双语:研究生教育过时了吗?

2015-09-08    来源:fortune    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

双语:研究生教育过时了吗?

现如今,许多高校的研究生院其实是让学生为他们可能永远得不到的工作做准备。大多数博士研究生均怀揣着在一所研究性大学获得一份终身职位的梦想,但最终实现这一梦想的可能性不足50%。种种问题的根源在于,研究生院的教学水平低下,无法与时俱进。而研究生教育的失败也在挑战整个高等教育的意义。

Arthur Levine, the head of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, has been a vituperative critic of teacher education programs for years. His recent announcement that he’s partnering with MIT to start a new teacher education graduate degree program has brought new attention to these teacher training programs – and to teacher training generally.
伍德罗•威尔逊国家奖学金基金会的负责人亚瑟•莱文,多年来一直在强硬地批评师范教育项目。最近,他宣布正在与麻省理工学院合作启动一个新的师范教育研究生学位课程,这再次引起了人们对这些师范教育课程和整个教师培训领域的关注。

Levine’s indictment of education school teaching has legs. The teaching of teachers is in a serious disarray. Requirements and standards for the master’s degree in education, the recognized certification credential for US public school teaching, vary wildly from university to university. And the effects of such variations ripple through the entire K-12 education system.
莱文对师范学院的指责并非无的放矢。师范教育目前处于严重的无序状态。教育专业硕士学位是美国公立学校的教师任职资格证书,但各大院校对这项学位有着不同的要求和标准。而这种差异正在影响着整个K-12教育系统(译者注:K-12指从幼儿园到12年级)。

There is no doubt that education schools have faced some special difficulties. The number of master’s degrees in education awarded in the US has more than doubled since 1990. This increase has brought more attention to the problems with these degrees.
毫无疑问,教育学院确实面临许多特殊的挑战。自1990年以来,美国授予的教育专业硕士学位增加了一倍以上,由此使得人们更加关注该学位存在的问题。

But these concerns should also draw our attention to a larger problem with the teaching in graduate schools in general.
但这些担忧也吸引人们去关注一个整个研究生教育的问题。

The problems with graduate schools of education are not new. A brief look at the history of the education school doctorate shows how far back they extend.
研究生学院的问题并不新鲜。简要回顾一下教育学院博士学位的历史,便可以看出相关问题存在已久。

The first PhD in education was awarded in 1893 by Columbia University’s Teachers College. Harvard University was the first to offer a new degree in 1920, called the EdD. The PhD in education was supposed to be a scholar’s degree and the EdD was supposed to be a practitioner’s credential.
1893年,哥伦比亚大学师范学院授予了第一个教育学博士学位。1920年,哈佛大学率先开始颁发一种新学位——教育博士学位。教育学博士学位是一种学者学位,而教育博士学位则属于从业者资格认证。

From the beginning, the two were hard to tell apart. The EdD programs tended to require research work — including a dissertation — similar to what was performed in PhD programs, but with fewer other requirements.
从最开始,这两个学位便很难区分。教育学位课程往往要求研究工作——包括一篇毕业论文,这与博士学位课程的要求类似,但其他要求较少。

By 1983, there were 167 schools in the US that were awarding both degrees. The EdD was typically looked down upon — but only by those who could tell the difference between the two. Lee S. Shulman, while serving as president of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, not long ago called the EdD a “PhD-lite.”
截至1983年,美国共有167所高校授予这两种学位。清楚两种学位区别的人,看不起教育博士学位。不久前,担任卡耐基教育促进基金会主席的李•S•舒尔曼,将教育博士学位称为“博士学位精简版”。

A 2007 initiative to reinvent the EdD found educators muttering the same complaints they always had about the close resemblance between the EdD and the education PhD. We need, said one, “to invest the time to really look seriously at the distinction between them.” To the extent that they could be told apart, the only real difference was that the EdD was considered to be less substantial and less valuable.
2007年.一项旨在重新改造教育博士学位的倡议发现,对于教育博士学位和教育学博士学位的相似性,教育工作者也有同样的不满。一位教育工作者表示,我们需要“投入时间,认真研究两者的区别。”两者真正的区别仅仅是,教育博士学位被普遍认为重要性和价值更低。

Such criticism slowly dragged the EdD down. In 2012, Harvard discontinued the degree, in this case following the lead of other institutions that had given it up first. The EdD now straggles along at a small number of universities.
这种批评逐渐贬低了教育博士学位的地位。2012年,哈佛大学停止授予该学位,而此前已经有其他院校放弃了这一学位。如今,只有少数高校仍在颁发教育博士学位。

The story of the EdD is an embarrassing tale of bad planning, but at bottom, it’s about poor teaching. But such badly planned and executed graduate teaching is by no means restricted to ed schools.
教育博士学位的故事,是规划不利的结果,但归根结底,原因在于教学水平低下。但在研究生教育中,这种计划失当,执行不力的情况,可不仅仅限于师范学院。

Poor teaching afflicts graduate programs in the liberal arts generally — and its results challenge the meaning of the whole enterprise of higher education.
人文科学专业的研究生课程也深受教学水平低下的折磨——其所造成的结果,也在挑战整个高等教育的意义。

My new book, The Graduate School Mess, describes how the effects of bad teaching extend far beyond graduate programs.
我的新书《研究生院的混乱》中描述了教学水平低下的影响如何蔓延到研究生教育之外。

When I say bad teaching, I don’t mean just what happens in the classroom. Graduate students learn in labs, through their own undergraduate teaching and on their own. But they need guidance. They receive it only through graduate programs that are rationally designed to meet graduate students’ needs and help move them toward their goals.
我所说的教学水平低下,并不仅限于课堂教育。研究生的学习途径不外乎实验室、本科教学和自学。但他们需要指导。而他们获得指导的唯一途径,便是设计合理,既能满足研究生的需求,又能帮助他们实现目标的研究生课程。

Graduate school in the US isn’t meeting the needs of its students right now. And here’s why:
但目前,美国的研究生学院无法满足学生的需求。原因如下:

The time taken to do the PhD degree has bloated in all fields. (It approaches nine years in the humanities.) The standard graduate curriculum is designed to prepare graduate students for jobs at research universities, where teaching loads are low and the expectation is that professors will focus on publication ahead of teaching.
所有专业的博士学位均需要太长的时间。(人文科学专业需要9年)。标准的研究生课程旨在帮助研究生做好在研究型大学求职的准备, 而在研究型大学,教学负担很轻,学校对教授的期望据说是专注于发表论文,而不是教学。

The fact is most doctoral students won’t ever get those fancy jobs. The majority of American professorships are at colleges and universities with higher courseloads and an expectation that professors will commit themselves to teaching.
事实上,大多数博士生无法得到这些理想的工作。美国大多数教授职位所在的高校,均有更高的课业负担,并且学校希望教授们将更多的精力投入到教学当中。

But most graduate programs don’t adjust their teaching of graduate students to reflect this fact. Consequently, their education is preparing them for work that most of them won’t ever get.
然而,多数研究生课程仍未调整其教学方式,以应对这样的现实。他们的教育,最终变成了使研究生们为大多数人不可能得到的工作做准备。

The results vary by field, but most PhDs who labor for years in the hope of a tenure-track professorship have less than a 50% chance of getting one.
经过多年努力终于获得博士学位的人,均怀揣着获得一份终身职位的梦想,但最终实现这一梦想的可能性不足50%,尽管不同专业的结果会有所差异。

Teaching-intensive jobs outnumber the research-centered ones. As a result, unsuccessful seekers of professorships populate a large, angry and embittered adjunct facultywhose low-wage labor has become necessary to the bottom line of many public universities.
教学密集型工作在数量上超过研究型工作。因此,未能获得教授职位的人形成了一个庞大的、愤怒的、充满怨恨的助教群体,在许多公立大学,这个群体的工资水平垫底已经成为必然。

These problems, which connect to many others, are essentially a failure of teaching.
从本质上而言,这些彼此关联的问题就是研究生教育彻底失败的明证。

Studies show that graduate school in the arts and sciences leaves students confused and bewildered about the value and purpose of what they are learning. They know how competitive the academic job market is, and they feel unprepared to succeed in it.
多项研究发现,人文科学专业的研究生,对他们所学专业的价值与目的充满困惑。他们清楚学术性工作市场的竞争是多么激烈,他们感觉自己并没有做好成功的准备。

They also feel unprepared for nonacademic alternatives, because graduate schools in the arts and sciences focus their curriculum on replication: professors at research universities essentially prepare students to become mini-me’s, younger versions of themselves.
甚至对于非学术类工作,学生们也感觉并未做好准备,因为人文科学专业的研究生课程专注于复制:研究型大学的教授们通常会使学生们变成一个个年轻的自己。

Thus, graduate schools fail to prepare students for the full range of jobs that are open to them, both inside and outside of the university.
因此,研究生院并未使学生们为高校内外的工作机会做好准备。

Even worse, it’s not just that graduate school professors fail to prepare students for the jobs that they will actually compete for when they graduate. The reality is, they teach them not to value those jobs — and in extreme cases, not to even want them at all.
更糟糕的是,研究生院的教授们不仅没能帮助学生们在毕业时做好争夺就业机会的准备。事实上,他们告诉学生们不要重视这些工作,在极端情况下,甚至诱导他们不要去想这些工作。

When graduate schools teach students to disrespect the jobs that they can get, they are teaching students to be unhappy — and that’s the worst kind of bad teaching.
研究生院教导学生们不尊重工作,事实上是在让他们变得不快乐——这是坏的教育最糟糕的情况。

These practices stem from a university culture that rewards research and treats teaching as a necessary sidecar.
这些问题均源自于一种高校文化——鼓励研究,将教学视为一种必要的附带品。

Ever since research universities sprouted in America in the decades following the Civil War, their proponents have lavished support on the PhD as a research degree and devalued the kind of graduate education that prepares students to go out and become teachers.
美国内战结束数十年后,研究型大学开始在美国出现,一直以来,他们的辩护者不遗余力地支持将博士学位作为一种研究型学位,对于那些培养学生走出校园成为教师的研究生教育,他们却极力贬低。

“Where ten seek the doctorate,” wrote the Michigan graduate dean Alfred H. Lloyd in 1924, “hundreds would be masters.” For Lloyd, educating master’s degree students was “superficial.”
密歇根大学研究生学院的院长阿尔弗雷德•H•劳埃德在1924年写道:“如果有十个人在攻读博士学位,就会有数百人成为硕士生。”对于劳埃德来说,教育硕士研究生是“肤浅的”。

For generations, the culture of research has dismissed the work that most graduate students actually wind up doing. This attitude could be camouflaged during times of growth of American higher education, when academic jobs and other resources were more plentiful.
多年来,研究型高校文化一直在排斥大多数研究生最终要做的工作。在美国高等教育发展时期,这种态度可能会被掩盖,因为学术性工作和其他类型工作的来源更加丰富。

Now, at a time of financial constraint, universities need to understand that graduate school is not just about producing research. It’s also about graduating students who are not only qualified for different kinds of jobs but also interested in doing them.
但在如今经济低迷的情况下,高校需要明白,研究生院不仅要产生研究成果,还要培养出符合不同类型工作要求,并且对工作感兴趣的毕业生。

Academia is conservative (with a small “c,” meaning that it’s slow to change), and rightly so. We wouldn’t want higher education to be buffeted about by the latest fads. But graduate education is conservative even by academic standards — which qualifies it as fossilized.
学术界是保守的(这意味着,学术界在面对变革时行动迟缓),理应如此。我们不希望高等教育受到最新潮流的冲击。但研究生教育甚至在学术界都被视为保守,被形容为僵化。

Arthur Levine’s experimental, mostly online program looks sketchy to his critics, but at least he’s trying something. It’s time that the larger graduate school enterprise tried to do something new as well. I don’t mean that graduate school should shift to an online model – it needs to be more small-scale than that. Graduate school must respond to the actual needs that graduate students have as people with professional lives.
亚瑟•莱文的试验项目大多为在线课程,在批评者看来,这或许不够完善,但至少他正在进行尝试。大型研究生院是时候进行一些新的尝试了。我并不是说研究生院应该变成在线模式——它需要更小的规模。研究生院必须明白,研究生也需要拥有职业生涯,并对这种实际需求做出响应。

There have lately been movements toward reform within the graduate school establishment. Some disciplinary organizations and individual institutions in the arts and sciences are trying to help graduate students finish sooner and understand the range of career options before them.
最近,研究生教育领域也在朝变革的方向发展。人文科学专业的某些学科组织和个人机构,正在尝试帮助研究生更快完成学业,了解他们将要面对的职业选择。

But the job ahead is difficult because of the academic value system: professors and would-be professors everywhere are judged according to the standards of research culture. For faculty, and graduate students in their turn, research is the coin of the realm. That has given an advantage to research culture over the years against competing views of higher education. That means that even at small colleges where teaching matters most, research determines status, rank and merit.
但由于学术价值系统的存在,未来的工作并不容易:教授和未来的教授们要接受研究型文化标准的评判。对于教学人员和研究生们来说,研究才是至高无上的任务。这也使研究型文化多年来在与其他高等教育理念的竞争中占据了优势。这意味着,即便在教学最为重要的小型院校,研究也是决定地位、排名和成绩的关键。

Universities need not abandon their research mission if they keep in mind that graduate education, like all education, requires thoughtful teaching. If they do so, they have a chance of bringing their houses back into order.
高校不需要放弃他们的研究使命,只要他们能够牢记,研究生教育与其他教育一样,同样需要优质的教学。只有如此,他们才有机会让研究生教育重新走上正轨。

Good graduate teaching will help make a difference where it matters most. It will improve the lives of universities’ least powerful citizens: their graduate students.
优质的研究生教育将在最关键的地方发挥影响。研究生,这个高校内最弱小的群体,也可以藉此改善他们的生活。

本文作者莱纳德•卡苏托为福特汉姆大学英语专业教授。

vituperative adj. 责骂的

disarray n. 无秩序;杂乱;衣冠不整

credential n. 证书;凭据;国书

dissertation n. 论文,专题;学术演讲



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