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May 1, 2011
A few weeks ago, Hofstra Law School organized a one day conference on cyberbullying. I had the opportunity, in my capacity as Hofstra’s Provost, to say a few words at the beginning of the conference but I stayed for the keynote address because as a parent and also as a school board member, the topic has special importance for me. In my remarks I mentioned a news story that attracted major attention a few years ago where a 49 year old mom was convicted on misdemeanor charges for posing as a 16 year old boy on MySpace.com.
May 1, 2011
I had dinner recently with a group of friends from high school. Several are helping to care for aging relatives, and the conversation naturally turned to how we will manage our own aging and inevitable incapacity."I have something for you to consider," one friend said. "My wife and I have been talking about this, and we want to buy a big place with our friends and live in a co-housing arrangement. That way no one has to grow old in isolation, or without dignity. We can pool our resources and hire caretakers as needed, we can share our skills and care for each other."
April 28, 2011
What is the most exciting new technological innovation happening on your campus? Elizabeth Lewis Pardoe (USA) A soon-to-be-installed big screen projection system on which we can hold video conferences and interviews with students and alumni far afield offers the most pertinent technological change in our office. Phone interviews/info sessions are a poor substitute for face to face ones, and a little computer screen makes it impossible for all participants to see each other. We needed a screen proportionate to our students' expanding ambitions!
April 28, 2011
Some end-of-the-week reflections on the uses of college students as human shields for stupid decisions:
April 28, 2011
The results of the consolidation vote (#NASPACPA) were shared yesterday afternoon. ACPA members voted overwhelmingly for consolidation. The majority of NASPA votes were for consolidation. Unfortunately, the required 2/3rd's majority wasn't met by NASPA voters.
April 28, 2011
We spend way too much energy thinking and worrying about LMS providers, features, companies and technologies. Blackboard or D2L or Moodle or Sakai or (now) Instructure? Open source or proprietary? This discussion board or that assessment engine? etc. etc. etc.The real LMS failure has nothing to do with any of these questions. Whether you are a Blackboard or Sakai school matters only marginally to our success in what truly matters about the LMS; how well we are utilizing the LMS to improve, support and facilitate authentic student learning.
April 28, 2011
Apparently, Mt Hood Community College in Oregon is responding to a threatened faculty strike by threatening hire permanent replacements. I called it in 2005. From my (admittedly callow) piece then:
April 28, 2011
In statistics we often talk about an idea of the “expected value.” By multiplying outcomes of something that involves uncertainty by the probability of each outcome occurring, we are able to find a value that is a good representation of the outcome that would most likely occur. For example, in a lottery, a large payoff is often offset by the huge number of people who buy a ticket just that once, in hopes of cashing in on the large payoff. This leads the expected value of a person’s winnings to possibly be less than the price of a ticket to even enter the lottery.
April 27, 2011
I have been teaching Media and Art History courses to Engineering and Architecture students at a technical university for the past three years. One of the main reasons why I have returned to the academic arena from the private sector was the love of teaching, but I sometimes experience difficulties while teaching social sciences and art to students coming from engineering departments.
April 27, 2011
Yesterday’s piece in IHE about traps that college presidents routinely fall into is well worth a read. It outlines several flaws that can consume capable leaders. The first and third -- an inability to accept the possibility of disagreement, and an inability to put one’s own ego aside -- strike me as largely the same thing, and relatively easy to avoid. But the second one hit close to home.

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