Monday, August 24, 2015

Professors: Can You Make This Pledge?

This is making the rounds on Facebook.  It comes from Princeton University professor Robert George's FB page:

As the new academic year approaches, I pledge the following and encourage my fellow professors, regardless of their political or other views, to join me: [I recognize that this pledge may not be appropriate for those teaching religious doctrine or in seminaries or other institutions devoted to the propagation of particular beliefs.]

1) I will educate my students, never indoctrinate them.
2) When addressing controversial moral, political, and other questions, I will ensure that my students are exposed to the strongest arguments that have been advanced on the competing sides.
3) When it comes to such questions, my reading lists will include writings by the best scholars representing the various perspectives.
4) When I advocate a particular view in class, I will acknowledge that there are reasonable people of goodwill who disagree and encourage students to consider their arguments before resolving the question in their own minds.
5) I will bear in mind that my role as a teacher is not to tell my students WHAT to think, but to encourage and help them to think more carefully, critically, and for themselves.