Quick Takes: Ex-Prof Convicted of Threats, Retired Prof Indicted for Allegedly Passing Sensitive Information, Controversy Over Bush at Furman, Mixed Grades for Teacher Preparation, Americans Love St. Andrews

May 21, 2008
  • A jury on Monday convicted Xiang Li of 11 felony counts of threats to injure or kill in relation to e-mail messages he was found to have sent to former colleagues at Morrisville State College of the State University of New York, The Syracuse Post-Standard reported. Multiple computer experts testified that the e-mail messages came from Li. He denied sending the messages, and speculated that former students may have hacked his computer to do so.
  • A federal grand jury on Tuesday indicted J. Reece Roth, a retired professor of electrical and computer engineering, on 18 counts of passing sensitive information to two graduate research assistants and then lying about it, The Knoxville News Sentinel reported. One of the graduate assistants is from Iran and one is from China. Roth's lawyer told the Associated Press that his client had done nothing wrong.
  • President Bush's planned commencement address at Furman University is setting off controversy even before he arrives on campus. Some faculty members who oppose the visit have said that they plan to stay away from the ceremonies May 31, the Associated Press reported. A conservative student group has responded by urging administrators to force the professors to attend the speech.
  • New teachers say that many areas of their preparation help them in the classroom, but they also cite topics where that's not the case, according to a new survey by Public Agenda and the National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality. Generally, the new teachers gave good reviews to their training in direct instruction and classroom management. But while 76 percent of new teachers said that they had been trained on teaching an ethnically diverse student body, only 39 percent said that their training provides a lot of help now that they are in the classroom.
  • Americans just love the University of St. Andrews and flock there, over other universities in the United Kingdom. An article in The Guardian explores the preferences of certain national groups for certain universities -- and how these patterns are formed. In the UK, French and Spanish students head to the North East Wales Institute, while Irish and Nigerian students enroll at Robert Gordon University, and Indian students enroll at the University of Greenwich.
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