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January 14, 2010 - 10:01pm
A longtime reader writes:My elite liberal undergrad institution, annual cost ~$55K vs median annual U.S. income of $50K, high in US News rating but never at absolute top, wants me to come back for the 20th anniversary of my graduation and write them a big check. Sustain excellence, don't you know. Fulfill mission, don't you know.
January 14, 2010 - 9:51pm
Well, maybe not the single best website regardless of topic or function, but the best site for environmental information with an emphasis on climate change.And maybe the best sit ever in the past or future of humanity, but the best one I've found so far.And it's hosted by a university! Yale, in fact (home of one of the best forestry/environmental schools in the USA).It's called Yale Environment 360, and it's here.
January 14, 2010 - 9:41pm
Have any of you ever purchased a set of DVDs or audio CDs from The Teaching Company? We got a catalog in at home in the mail yesterday, it felt like an artifact from another era.The Web site for The Teaching Company reads:
January 13, 2010 - 9:43pm
Why do people still go to grad school in the liberal arts?My generation had an excuse; we were told that a great wave of retirements was imminent, after which jobs would spring from the ground like mushrooms. In other words, we were lied to.But the adjunct trend is so well-established at this point, and the economic irrationality of grad school so screamingly obvious, that it's fair to wonder why many departments are actually experiencing record applications.I have a few thoughts, but I invite others.
January 13, 2010 - 9:38pm
One reason I’ve endured the long distance challenges of a commuting lifestyle for so long is the flexibility academic life offers for travel, research and interpersonal ‘reconnecting’ during school breaks. This holiday I’ve managed to do a satisfying bit in all three of these areas: --Long conversations with my sisters and my teenage daughter Katie, which included forgotten details about high school boyfriends and my misbegotten behavior.--Editing and screening a ‘rough cut’ of my current film project with friends and colleagues.
January 13, 2010 - 8:39pm
The tenure track job market is in the toilet. Have you considered pursuing an academic technology or library career instead?Have you thought about applying to a Master's of Library and Information Science (MLIS) program? How about a Master's in Instructional Technology and Learning Services?I'm sure you've thought about this option (have you?). Or maybe been given advice that learning technology and academic librarian jobs are wonderful routes to have an academic career.
January 13, 2010 - 7:09pm
. . . that gets us into trouble. It's the folks who like smoking who are the most likely to get cancer. It's the people who drive way too fast who are most likely to crash. The folks who want more salt on everything who develop high blood pressure. The carbohydrate addicts who get diabetes.
January 13, 2010 - 9:35am
Happy New Year everyone! Having passed through to the other side of our most consumer-driven season of the year, maybe you have seen this Toys R Us advertisement flier that was posted on Sociological Images, a blog associated with Contexts magazine? Toys ‘R’ Us has a line of “Edu-science” toys, which includes telescopes and microscopes.
January 13, 2010 - 12:49am
When I started teaching eons ago—by which I mean 12 technology years—most ambitious teachers hoping to see the work of their class in print could only photocopy booklets of student writing for the class’s own consumption. In 1998 we might have been calling these efforts ‘zines, since rhetoric departments believed that using the word “‘zine” was avante-garde in the way Russians in War and Peace think they’re awfully sexy speaking French.
January 12, 2010 - 9:14pm
A new correspondent writes:I’m now serving (on an interim basis) as director of a small program at a university, and I am struggling with the question of whether to apply when the search to fill the director position gets underway.

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