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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.
April 27, 2011
Todd Haynes’s adaptation of Hollywood noir writer James M. Cain’s novel, Mildred Pierce (1941), premiered on HBO recently. Kate Winslet stars in the title role, originally played by Joan Crawford in the 1945 film adaptation. Crawford won the Oscar for portraying a Depression-era single mom, a ‘grass’ widow, driven to feed and nurture her enormously ungrateful daughter, Veda by whatever means possible. I never identified with Crawford’s slightly melodramatic depiction, but Winslet’s performance of the sacrificial mom struck a nerve with me.
April 27, 2011
A couple of folks wrote in response to my statement that tuition benefits for my children were a factor in my decision to remain employed at Greenback. They also spoke of choosing to work at a college or university because of benefits, but the benefit that each of them mentioned first was health insurance.One was a single dad who said he could earn more in construction (at least, in most years). But with two small children, the health insurance his school offers makes that job a better deal for him.
April 27, 2011
Casey Green's analysis of the news that Blackboard is in play is a must read.

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