🧵Thought I’d curate all of my weary sighing replies to those who don’t approve of the @UCU strikes here in one handy place. #OneOfUsAllOfUs #UCUstrike ⬇️
“Lazy! Academics hardly do any work anyway”
a) Not only do we regularly pull 40+ hours a week, our work has increased in the pandemic as we “pivoted” (god, that word) to blended teaching.
b) if we hardly do any work, how come you think this strike is disruptive to students? 🧐
“They have all those long holidays”
No, at my institution our holiday allowance is 27 days plus bank holidays and college closures. This isn’t school. We aren’t shut outside term time. And we don’t just teach.
Which brings me to another point: a lecturing job generally has three components on an education & research contract: teaching (40%), research (40%) and admin i.e. pastoral care, leadership roles, etc. (20%). For education only roles, there’s teaching, scholarship & admin.
And don’t forget that UCU membership also includes academic-related roles — e.g. librarians, archivists, IT services — and some professional services roles. Y’know, the people who keep the place going. And they often face HR policies that academics don’t.
“They’re lucky they get a pension at all. Public sector pensions are shit.”
It’s not a race to the bottom. Pensions are deferred earnings. For the amount of study academics go through, the salaries aren’t that great. A lot of us would make more if we left academia.
“Yeah, but you’ve never worked in the real world in a real job.”
Well, I have (archaeologist, then a programmer, plus countless years of waitressing and shop work) but that’s beside the point. Because the point is that it’s not the cushy job you think it is.
“It’s not fair on the students.”
I know. And we really do care about our students, which is why strike action is a last resort. Poor working conditions, casualised labour, and pay gap inequality don’t make for a particularly pleasant learning environment either.
“But students are paying ££££ for this nonsense.”
Breaking that down by contact hours, marking and prep time actually means it’s pretty good value. But that’s moot as it’s not where the money directly goes. (FWIW, I’m against fees.)
“And the students didn’t even get in-person classes! They could’ve learnt everything on YouTube!”
Er, go for it. Alas, creating online materials for a planned and scrutinised curriculum costs time and money. And learning in person isn’t the only single way to learn.
Btw, I think it’s bloody awful that students didn’t get the experience of starting university. I also think it was handled badly by many universities and by the government, especially around tying students to halls contracts.
“Fire them all!”
You can’t. We’re legally striking as part of a union. If you have a problem with *that* then your issues probably aren’t confined to berating academic and academic-related staff who are trying to make their working environment better.
If you’ve read all that and still have the energy to read more, check out the #UCU info on why we’re striking: ucu.org.uk/article/11896/… #OneOfUsAllOfUs #UCUstrike
p.s. I love my job. I genuinely love it. I feel lucky to be able to do it. But we deserve better working conditions. We deserve to be valued for pouring our hearts into it.

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Kate Devlin (on strike)

Kate Devlin (on strike) Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @drkatedevlin

Jul 25, 2019
I am at my sister’s house in deepest Fermanagh. She and my brother-in-law found a colouring book about dinosaurs in the charity shop.
BUT WAIT! This is no ordinary dinosaur colouring book. This is a Christian home-schooling colouring book. And God made the dinosaurs.
Yes, Adam and Eve hung out with dinosaurs because God created dinosaurs on the *counts on fingers* fifth day of creation (if they were water-dwelling or if they flew) and all the land ones on the sixth day.
Now, that might be tricky, right? Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden but with dinosaurs? No! Because the dinosaurs were vegetarian. As were Adam and Eve. All cool.
Read 9 tweets
Nov 28, 2018
#huxleysummit - @joswinson argues for a code of ethics for #AI. I absolutely agree. But how do we hold people to it? Last week's #CUKC roundtable tackled this. Conclusion? No conclusion. Because competing interests of business, academia, and law-makers mean it's hugely difficult.
There are several approaches: I'd love to see an external ethics review conducted for any project (academic or commercial) using human participants or human data. Academia already does this but businesses are reluctant as their research is confidential/sensitive. #huxleysummit
We could try an ethics charter along the lines of equality charter/Athena SWAN, where businesses/research groups voluntarily sign up to a code of conduct. But, as @julianhuppert said at #CUKC, who funds this? Who evaluates it? #HuxleySummit
Read 8 tweets
May 3, 2018
LOL, NO. A thread. [1/10]
I’m going to skip over all the (impenetrable, fittingly enough) wittering about the redistribution of sex - and omg, it’s an tenuous take - and focus on the sex robots. Because of course. [2/10]
I’ve delved into incels’ views on sex robots. It’s as messed up as you might expect: a desire to replace women - preferably in a violent and permanent way. [3/10]
Read 12 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Don't want to be a Premium member but still want to support us?

Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal

Or Donate anonymously using crypto!


0xfe58350B80634f60Fa6Dc149a72b4DFbc17D341E copy


3ATGMxNzCUFzxpMCHL5sWSt4DVtS8UqXpi copy

Thank you for your support!