Higher Education is not The Apprentice, and neither is the ‘Real World’.

Fruits of the pedagogic life

Dr Nicola Rivers and Dr Dave Webster. 

Enabled by technology, we were discussing assessment feedback in Higher Education, while watching an episode of The Apprentice*. Although neither us of us are entrepreneurs, or teach business, or retail, courses, what initially struck us when watching the Apprentice was that it offered a certain jouissance of judging others. The viewer gets to comment, in the privacy of their living room, on the competency, or more frequently, lack of competency, amongst the teams, and what personal qualities they display. In fact the joy of judging seems actively encouraged by the way the show is edited, namely to accentuate the less flattering attributes and characteristics of the candidates. In this sense, it has much in common with other Reality TV, be that Four in a Bed, Come Dine with Me, or The Hotel Inspector**.

Aside from the potentially voyeuristic pleasure of judging, what…

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