Brian Weatherson has some advice that is contrary to the conventional wisdom for his readers. Color me deeply skeptical.
þ: James Joyner, who aptly summarizes Weatherson’s argument thusly:
Go to grad school if you can get a free ride to a top ten institution or if you don’t mind being relegated to the backwaters of academia teaching dull students or don’t mind losing ten years of earning potential before going into another line of work.
Since none of those three really apply to me (except possibly #3), I think we can safely say I am an idiot. Frankly, if I weren’t really good* at teaching a class (research methods) that most political scientists hate to teach with an unrivalled passion†, I’d have no career.
* By “really good,” I mean “not as horribly as 99% of other professors.” I freely admit that I could be better.
† The reasons are two-fold: people who teach methods typically get terrible student evaluations, particularly at schools where methods is a requirement for the major, and teaching methods is typically harder work than sitting around talking about one’s own “substantive” research interests or spewing out the intro outline for the 17th time.