Higher Education Quick Takes
Serge Haroche and David J. Wineland were this morning named winners of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics for "ground-breaking experimental methods that enable measuring and manipulation of individual quantum systems." Haroche is a physicist at the Collège de France and the École Normale Supérieure, both in Paris. Wineland conducts his research at the National Institute of Standards and Technology and University of Colorado, both in Boulder, Colo.
Research released Monday by the National Bureau of Economic Research suggests that student performance on tests may be related not only to knowledge gained, but time between significant tasks. The new research -- by Ian Fillmore and Devin G. Pope of the University of Chicago -- examined student performance on Advanced Placement exams. The AP final exams are not always on the same schedule, so students who take more than one AP exam have varying amounts of time between the tests. The study found "strong evidence" that having shorter time periods between exams resulted in lower scores on the second exam. Students who take two exams with 10 days between them are 8 percent more likely to pass both exams than those who take the exams one day apart. An abstract of the study may be found here.
Emory University is formally acknowledging and apologizing for the first time for the anti-Jewish actions, many years ago, of its dental school, The New York Times reported. When the late John E. Buhler was dean, from 1948 to 1961, 65 percent of Jewish students were either failed or forced to repeat entire years of classes. During that time, the dental school had an application system asking students to identify as "Caucasian, Jew or Other." While the history has been widely known for decades, the university is only now formally acknowledging it.
Students at Sana'a University in Yemen held protests last week to call for an end to political intrusions at the university, Yemen Times reported. Instructors are also protesting what they view as unfair treatment by the government. The protest comes amid debates over who should be appointed rector, and demands that military officials stay off of the campus.
Cardale Jones, a third-string quarterback at Ohio State University, tweeted on Friday that athletes shouldn't need to attend class, ESPN reported. "Why should we have to go to class if we came here to play FOOTBALL, we ain't come to play SCHOOL classes are POINTLESS," he wrote. Once media organizations noticed and started to write about the tweet, it was removed, as was the entire Twitter account of Jones. The university suspended Jones for one game as a result of the tweet.
A campus security guard wasn't sure "security guard" is same as police, so changed hed. dl at the University of South Alabama early on Saturday shot and killed a freshman who the university said was charging the officer outside the police station on campus. According to a statement from the university, the officer went outside after hearing banging on a window and was repeatedly charged by the student, who was naked. The officer fired only after repeated requests that the student calm down were ignored, the statement said. The student was identified as Gilbert Thomas Collar, an 18-year-old freshman. The university has asked the local district attorney to investigate what happened. Collar's mother told NBC News that she did not understand why non-lethal force could not have been used to subdue her son, who she said was 5 foot 7 inches tall and weighed 135 pounds. "He was wearing no clothes and he was obviously not in his right mind," said Bonnie Collar. "Obviously he was not armed. He was completely naked."
John B. Gurdon of the University of Cambridge and Shinya Yamanaka of Kyoto University were this morning named joint winners of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Medicine "for the discovery that mature cells can be reprogrammed to become pluripotent." Yamanaka is also affiliated with the Gladstone Institutes, in San Francisco.
Clair Willcox was named Friday to his former job as editor-in-chief of the University of Missouri Press, The Columbia Missourian reported. In recent months, the press was slated for elimination and Willcox was laid off. When the press survived, supporters said that they would not be satisfied until Willcox's job was restored.
The University of Tokyo, Japan's most prestigious university, is starting its first four-year undergraduate degree in English, The New York Times reported. Officials said that they want to attract more international students to the university, and that they want to expand their pool beyond countries such as South Korea and China where many people become fluent in Japanese. The inaugural class includes students from Australia, Britain, Finland, Poland, the United States and Vietnam.