Wednesday, 17 May 2017

When we Speak Academese

Recently I replied to a LinkedIn Higher Education group thread and posted: only to realise post-post (;-D) that I had spoken Academese.

By Academese, I mean using gobbledygook jargon that only those in your particular field will know.

So let me tell you the story. The LinkedIn thread I was posting on was about marking dissertations for an online doctorate. The professor who had started the thread felt that he had an editing role: "pass, fail, revise and resubmit", as opposed - presumably - to a mentoring or advisory role. Too hands-on, I am guessing.

I commented "Professor Spiker, I was wondering if the course you are hosting had a clear marking rubric and whether you were able to establish that mentor/mentee relationship... or if there are too many students for you to have that dyad linkage?"

Oops. What I was referring to what Mary Uhl-Bein's LMX or Leader Member Exchange theory, where leaders and followers generate a one-to-one relationship (Jackson & Parry, 2011). But I assumed with 'dyad linkage' that all the other contributors on the thread would know what that meant.

And sure, if they were leadership scholars, they would. But if they were economists, biologists or geologists, they probably wouldn't.

Note to self: check for common knowledge or provide a reference before hitting the post button.

Or apologise and do that afterwards (which is what I did).



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