Here’s a useful (and amusing) example, put together by Dr. Kurt Schwenk, to get you thinking about how to cite references

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Faculty Appearance and Faculty Quality: Is There a Connection?

Kurt Schwenk Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology University of Connecticut Storrs, CT 06269-3043

It has been suggested that bald, bearded professors are superior in overall quality relative to faculty lacking these attributes (Schwenk, 1987, 1989). However, a few investigators disagree with Schwenk’s findings (e.g., Hirsute, 1990; Brunette, 2003). The computer simulation models of Schwenk & Bud (1990) further predicted that the addition of a slight beer-belly to the physical parameters suggested by Schwenk (1987) would so enhance the popularity of a UConn professor that it is unlikely any space on campus could accommodate his or her class enrollments (with the possible exception of Gampel Pavilion). However, in a pointed rebuttal to the Schwenk & Bud (1990) study, Slender et al. (1991) noted that Professor Schwenk, himself, fits the Schwenk (1987, 1989) and Schwenk and Bud (1990) profile, and his meager enrollments hardly fulfill the prediction. Furthermore, in her now classic study, La Mujer (1968) showed that female instructors are consistently preferred three to one over males by students at ten top-ranking U. S. institutions. Given that female instructors generally have all their hair, are only rarely bearded and infrequently have beer bellies, these results would seem to falsify the Schwenk (1987, 1989) and Schwenk and Bud (1990) hypotheses. Slender et al. (1991) noted that Schwenk failed to cite the La Mujer (1968) study in any of his papers and they further implied that the quality of Schwenk's scholarship is in question. In a vicious rejoinder to the Slender et al. (1991) paper, Schwenk (1993) claimed that Slender, Gracile and Lithe were involved in a widespread conspiracy to ruin his professional reputation and that the conspiracy extended to La Mujer, Brunette, Hirsute, and a host of other investigators (reviewed in Schwenk, 2005). He further claimed to have unpublished evidence linking these scientists to a, heretofore unrevealed, CIA plot to bring Elvis and Marilyn back to life in order to discredit Schwenk and his ideas. As proof, Schwenk (1993) offered the testimony of voices he hears constantly in his head (K. Schwenk, personal communication).

Acknowledgments.—I am grateful to my attendants for making paper scraps and crayons available during the preparation of the manuscript. I also thank my roommate, ‘Napoleon Bonaparte’, for his comments on an earlier draft and for his generous contribution of a shiv.


Brunette, C. W. (2003) Hair color and classroom performance: a spurious correlation? Annals of the American Institute of Beauticianary Sciences 35:121-154.

Slender, P., M. W. Gracile and D. Lithe (1991) Failure of physical parameter models to predict student preference. Pseudoscientifica 342:233-236.

Hirsute, G. E. (1990) Hair to stay: beards in the classroom and student preference. Journal of Taxpayer Waste 254:1086-1089.

La Mujer, W. (1968) Gender issues in faculty quality. Pp. 567-593. In: Gonads: Inside or Out? F. M. Nist and M. Swine (eds.). Fullcourt Press, San Francisco.

Schwenk, K. (1987) Faculty quality in relation to certain physical parameters. Zeitschrift für Zungenspitzen und Schleimdrüsen. 52:231-242.

Schwenk, K. (1989) Bald and bearded: killer combo or contemptible compensation? Advances in Narcissism 3:15-27.

Schwenk, K. (1993) Voices in my head: the CIA, Elvis, Marilyn and the plot against me. Xenophobe 11:1-346.

Schwenk, K. (2005) Deconstructing the Ontological Underpinnings of Dialectical Structuralism in Biological Epistemology: Eschewing the Obfuscatory. Bellevue Press, New York.

Schwenk, K., and I. P. Bud (1990) Excessive beer consumption improves faculty instruction. Bulletin of the American Beer Institute 21:24-32.