Tabs are a browser's best friend. In fact, I'm currently looking at a wonderful collection of articles, stories, videos, and random bits all contained in the tabs in my Chrome browser. Sometimes I think it's best to share a bunch of resources, include some commentary, and then let things go from there. Here's what I've been reading/watching:
Rules, risks, and exceptions
Aaron Hughey, professor & program coordinator in the Department of Counseling and Student Affairs at Western Kentucky University, shared this thoughtful TedTalks video via the CSPTalk listserv  that's definitely worth viewing. According to Hughey:
Our Practicum students watched/discussed this TedTalks in our supervision class yesterday. Our students sometimes struggle with the perennial issue of when to follow the rules and when it is appropriate to make an exception. Schwartz does a great job of explaining the relevant decision-making criteria that should come into play.
Being critical while being kind
Brain Pickings by Maria Popova  provides a plethora of interesting posts to peruse. This piece on "How to Criticize with Kindness: Philosopher Daniel Dennett on the Four Steps to Arguing Intelligently " is particularly good. The article includes Dennett's steps for composing a successful critical commentary. Popova nails it when she says: "If only the same code of conduct could be applied to critical commentary online, particularly to the indelible inferno of comments."
I've been a fan of John Maeda 's thought leadership since I began following him on Twitter. From MIT, to RISD, and beyond, Maeda's sense of leadership is accessible, useful, and inspiring. While this particular post (snippets from Redesigning Leadership  by Maeda and Becky Bermont) is a few years old, the content is perfectly applicable for the present. My favorite excerpt involves the idea that conflict should lead to something useful: "Constructive conflict is about building something, whether it is hatching a new idea through debate or reaching a new goal through healthy competition between teams."
MOOCs, MIT, and Some Strategies for Success
There are so many useful pieces of information in this post from MIT's News Office: "What 6.9 million clicks tell us about how to fix online education ." If you're putting together an online course, take a look through the "key findings on what online learners want from videos." It's fascinating to read that "Fast talkers (professors seen as the most engaging) spoke at 254 words per minute." And, this is applicable in a lot of different presentation and teaching spheres, but it's always good to reiterate that people want "Lively visuals rather than static PowerPoint slides."
New Ideas Have Their Origins in the Past
If you're in need of some history, critical thought, and analysis, check out Kevin Guidry 's blog. His latest post provides an excellent connection to the issues that we've faced in the past and how they relate to contemporary discourse. "Many New Ideas are Quite Old " should be required reading in our masters level student affairs programs.
Borrowing a question from the ever-prolific Josh Kim , "What are you reading?"
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