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June 7, 2010 - 10:16pm
Whilst escaping from Chez Rendell this morning, I espied what I thought was the end of a TV commercial put out by the wireless phone industry through its trade group CTIA. And then, as I drove to campus, it entered my mind that the Gulf oil spill calamity, for all its calamitousness, has created a window of advertising opportunity. A chance to influence the way people think about the environment, and the country, and which virtues are important.
June 7, 2010 - 9:23pm
I'm convinced that technology will provide the bridge between learning theory and teaching practice in higher ed. The gap between what we know and what we can actually accomplish is always large. For instance, we know that the best learning takes place in a seminar setting, with students and teachers sitting around a table and constructing knowledge through conversation, dialogue, and opportunities for active learning. The problem is that the resources do not exist to turn every class into a seminar, as the seminar method does not scale. Instead, we have lecture courses.
June 7, 2010 - 8:57pm
I’ve been consumed by news stories lately, one local—within the community of “mother bloggers” — and one national. The local, a story of a child’s death; the national, the Gulf Coast oil spill. They have little in common except the way they make me feel: impotent, enraged, worried. Impotent, because it seems there’s so little I can do to change the way things are. Enraged, because the stories both suggest miscarriages of justice.
June 6, 2010 - 9:36pm
I take a week off from blogging, and Wal-Mart announces that it's entering higher education! I can't leave you people alone for one minute...
June 6, 2010 - 8:52pm
'"The idea of a "senior learning technologist" telling faculty that their syllabi should be made freely available is laughable."--Posted by DrRingDing on June 3, 2010 at 11:30am EDT in a comment to my blog.
June 6, 2010 - 6:15pm
Ann Larson’s recent IHE column, in which she dissects the popular idea that that a college education is the key to upward mobility for lower-income Americans, resonated for me in a personal way, because I have two nephews who joined the military after they ran out of money for college tuition. One, in the National Guard, spent a year in Iraq and could be called up again. The other will have shipped out to Afghanistan when this column is posted.
June 6, 2010 - 4:52pm
In addition to having a long weekend, Memorial Day should be appreciated for its original meaning. And during the actual day or during the weekend, we should all make time to remember, reflect and honor those who gave their lives to protect our country and our quality of life.
June 4, 2010 - 2:21am
My sons and I didn’t drive three hours south over Memorial Day weekend to score candy; we went to see friends in my hometown, visit the graveyard, attend an Italian heritage festival, and watch the parade, which was basic but authentic: A VFW color guard, dignitaries in Chryslers, local marching bands and a pom-pom squad, students from a dance academy, a howl of fire trucks, Shriners in tiny waxed cars, a giant American flag borne by a platoon of citizens, men walking Harleys like hobbyhorses while pouring on the throttle, and the mascots for a minor-league baseball team—a muscled-up miner
June 3, 2010 - 9:49pm
The marvelous Barbara Fister writes in our discussion yesterday about my argument that Google should provide a syllabus platform:
June 3, 2010 - 9:16pm
I have written in this column before about the concept of "opportunity cost." This topic from economics says that every choice involves a cost, that when we choose to do one thing, we automatically choose not to do something else. When I think of the sacrifices my parents made so that my sister and I could obtain college educations, I realize that there were many opportunity costs to the decisions they made.

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