Monthly Archives: January 2013

What if she wants to be a teacher? Or worse, a professor?

You want your kids to be happy, successful, fulfilled. You want them to make good choices. You try to help them avoid the same mistakes you made when you were younger. And then you hear them teaching their younger brother. And panic sets in. My daughter just started kindergarten this year. She is (quantifiably) the […] … learn more→

Overfishing threatens critical link in the food chain

The fish near the bottom of the aquatic food chain are often overlooked, but they are vital to healthy oceans and estuaries. Collectively known as forage fish, these species—including sardines, anchovies, herrings, and shrimp-like crustaceans called krill—feed on plankton and become food themselves for larger fish, seabirds, and marine mammals. Historically, people have eaten many […] … learn more→

The early days of the digital dissertation

Digital dissertations are sometimes said to be commonplace; however such talk usually refers to an artifact that is digital but is not dependent on being digital. In other words, it could also have been published on paper without losing anything in the translation. My research uncovered only one previous dissertation that was media-rich and born-digital: […] … learn more→

What happens when you like a Facebook page

On January 16th at 9:06 AM, I liked the University of Phoenix Facebook Page. Because of my consulting practice, it makes sense for me to like a wide variety of higher-education-related pages on Facebook. Universities and colleges that I have worked with are in my list of likes as well as several other well-known schools […] … learn more→

Feminism Fizzles

Where is Betty Friedan when we need her? I don\’t believe in the end of men or that women can, or can\’t, have it all. There may be more single ladies than there used to be, but I\’m not that interested in liberal whining about why 20-somethings can\’t find husbands, or conservative rants about how […] … learn more→

The object formerly known as the textbook

Textbook publishers argue that their newest digital products shouldn\’t even be called \”textbooks.\” They\’re really software programs built to deliver a mix of text, videos, and homework assignments. But delivering them is just the beginning. No old-school textbook was able to be customized for each student in the classroom. The books never graded the homework. […] … learn more→

Going, going, gone: the where and why of memory erasure

If you could erase your memories, which ones would you choose? As a neuroscientist, one of my raisons d’etre is to achieve, in a way, some form of memory erasure, especially for individuals that suffer post-traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety or drug addiction. Each of these situations involves some form of persistent memory that interferes […] … learn more→

Memo to Trustees re: Thomas Friedman’s ‘Revolution Hits the Universities’

Dear [hypothetical] colleagues, I am sure you, or some of your fellow trustees, noticed Thomas Friedman’s op-ed (‘Revolution Hits the Universities’) in this weekend’s Sunday New York Times. Friedman, author of The World is Flat, did a characteristically effective job in raising attention about a phenomenon (massive open online courses, or MOOCs) worth thinking about. […] … learn more→

Biting off more than we can chew

As Aaron has noted, he and a group of other professors will be taking and writing about Coursera’s “E-learning and Digital Cultures MOOC.” I will not be one of them – not because I wouldn’t find it interesting, but because I’ve already been down the road, having taken a World History Course last semester (and […] … learn more→