As a PhD student and a post-doc, I always liked being a TA, and I always considered teaching as a natural duty for grad students and faculty. In the end, universities are and should be mainly about transmitting knowledge to students. Sometimes, I even enjoyed grading and proctoring because it would give me a short break from a highly creative job (research) to a mechanical one, where I could partially switch my brain off.
While a minority of my colleagues would enjoy teaching as much as I did, the large majority would endlessly complain about their teaching duties, and boringly compare their teaching load to the lighter one that colleague X or Y got assigned by the department, shouting to the world how unfair that was.
I never understood why this is the case. In particular, I have two questions:
- How can someone end up working in academia, if teaching is such a burden?
- Why do people in academia (from grad student upwards) complain so much about their teaching load, often comparing it to that of their colleagues?