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Quick Takes: Uncertainties Over Concussions in College Football, MIT's High School Site, Secret Ticket Wishlist, Push for Independent Universities in Cuba, Ivy Bashing, Harvard Bashing

November 29, 2007
  • College football programs decide by themselves how to diagnose and treat players' concussions -- and when injured players can return to the field -- without oversight, despite the seriousness of the health risks, The New York Times reported. The article was prompted by several recent incidents in which key players suffered concussions, and have been declared fit for play in this Saturday's key games.
  • The Massachusetts Institute of Technology's OpenCourseWare program puts course materials online and makes them available free to anyone -- in an effort that has been praised by educators worldwide for opening up MIT materials. On Wednesday, MIT announced a high school version, Highlights for High School, that will put materials online for high schools to use to improve instruction in science, technology, engineering and math. On on Wednesday, MIT announced that it now has 1,800 of its courses -- virtually all of them -- in OpenCourseWare.
  • A "ticket wishlist" from John Edwards won't be released by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It's not about presidential tickets, but sporting events. The Associated Press has been seeking e-mail documents between Edwards and the university related to a think tank he established at Chapel Hill in 2005 and has received some of the requested documents. But the university is blocking release of a "ticket wishlist" from Edwards, saying that it is part of confidential information related to his employment. The university told the AP that Edwards did not receive free tickets.
  • More than 5,000 Cubans -- many of them students, professors and intellectuals -- have signed a petition calling for the return of Roman Catholic universities and other universities that would be independent of the government, the Chicago Tribune reported. Fidel Castro's government shut down such universities decades ago, and those signing the petition say that there is no real academic freedom at the state-run universities, where those who criticize Castro are kicked out.
  • The idea that Ivy League alumni or graduates of similar institutions run all the businesses that matter is just a myth, at least in the Silicon Valley. The San Jose Mercury News reported on a survey of the CEO's of the 150 largest public companies in Silicon Valley -- and two thirds were educated at state universities, state colleges, or other regional institutions.
  • 02138, the new magazine about all matters related to Harvard University, has discovered (please read this sitting down) that some of the university's biggest stars -- as well as prominent scholars elsewhere -- rely on sometimes uncredited student assistants for much of their writing. The details are here.
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