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March 30, 2011
A dear colleague of mine and I were talking the other day about a couple of exciting things that have happened concerning recent developments with my research. She looked at me and very thoughtfully proclaimed, “There is no way you can do all that you are doing so well – you must be magic.” After I hugged her and told her that I had always known that I was a changeling, I felt nauseous. Wait a second, how am I doing all that I am doing? And maybe more importantly, should I be doing all of this?
March 30, 2011
Towards the end of Steve Dublanica's hilarious and information filled Keep the Change: A Clueless Tipper's Quest to Become the Guru of the Gratuity, the author provides a list of people known as "bad tippers". To my chagrin, both academics and information technology workers made the list. Does this mean that academic technology are the worst tippers on the planet?
March 30, 2011
Last month, Elizabeth Coleman -- president of Bennington College -- addressed the National Association of Independent Schools annual conference. I wasn't there to hear her; the text of her remarks was forwarded to me by someone who was. It's worth a read. Go ahead, look it over. I'll wait.*****
March 29, 2011
Amy Chua’s endlessly discussed Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother and Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa’s Academically Adrift have provoked much questioning: What’s wrong with parents? What’s wrong with students?What has not really been asked is, What’s wrong with school?
March 29, 2011
Shared governance has many definitions, and the boundaries can be fuzzy. But most academics have a pretty clear idea that in the academic context, part of shared governance involves faculty control over curriculum. Administrators are well-advised to tread as lightly as possible in curriculum, ideally functioning mostly as traffic cops. Make sure the process is followed and the course descriptions in the printed catalog match the ones online -- which sounds simple but isn’t -- and otherwise don’t mess with it.
March 29, 2011
When will you pay for digital content? If you are in the information business, and education is an information business, it probably makes sense to spend some time thinking about this question. I just answered that question for myself, giving Audible (really Amazon), $229.50 of my money in exchange for 25 audiobook credits (works out to $9.18 a book).
March 28, 2011
I file this one under “instant classic.” A new correspondent writes:[I]f you are asked "how has your teaching changed over the years" or "how has your management of people changed over the years" or "how has your interaction with clients changed over the years" the wrong answer is "it hasn't."The best professionals are continually evaluating their performance and making tweaks to improve - no improvement = no evaluation of past performance in my book.
March 28, 2011
I am lame at Twitter.The Twitter EDU world is divided into (at least) 3 categories:Awesome Twitter People: People like Eric Stoller (see below) who authentically leverage Twitter as a new medium for communication, collaboration, and community.Lame Twitter People: Folks like me. We use the tool badly, don't take advantage of Twitter's ability to forge new connections and provide real time intelligence and analysis, and basically violate and subvert the cultural norms of the platform.
March 28, 2011
I am a huge fan of open government and of the Freedom of Information Act. The right of the people to request information from public officials is an important tool for journalism, research, and activism. That’s why, as I read responses to a political group’s request for e-mail correspondence from a state employee, my knee does not begin to jerk convulsively. I don’t think, “e-mail!? That’s outrageous!
March 28, 2011
I’ve been keeping tabs open in my browser, hoping I can get to them before the newsworthiness fades, but it’s been nearly impossible to keep up. What should I focus on, the report on the “pyramid problem” in higher ed, which explains why even though women are receiving more than half the doctorates in the U.S., we are still nowhere near achieving gender equity in the professoriate?

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