Melody Torcolacci file photo
FeaturedHigher EducationScience

Anti-vax “prof” ignites scandal at Queen’s U

This week the Principal and Provost of Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario publicly acknowledged student complaints that an instructor in the Faculty of Kinesiology and Health Studies was promoting anti-vaccine materials in a basic health class. The instructor in question, Melody Torcolacci, is reported to have presented her Health 102 class …

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Higher Education

On the Market II: You in cyberspace

One of the ramifications of the internet age is that “you” as a presence in a variety of databases may actually outlive “you” as a physically present entity. For the job hunter, this raises a quandary – how much of yourself should you reveal on social media such as Facebook …

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Higher Education

On the Market II: Digital Footprints

In the course of my usual social media browsing I came across this article in the Chronicle, which encourages (nay, demands!) that academics take control of their online presence through the creation of a personal website that links to and integrates all of their social media accounts and professional activities. …

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Higher Education

On the Market I: Brown M&M’s

Dan is doing an amazing service by documenting his process (to hopefully a well-deserved and intellectually stimulating tenure-track position). So, I thought I would add a counter-point to his. The view from across the table, as it were. What is it that a job search committee is looking for when …

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Higher Education

On the Market I: Bespoke Courses

This is the first installment of “On the Market,” a series in which Dan chronicles his experiences and observations as a new PhD on the academic job market. It will continue until he gets a job or dies trying. As many of us unfortunately know from experience, applying to tenure-track jobs is …

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EducationHigher Education

Active learning: does depth outweigh breadth?

The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing.  (attributed to the Greek poet Archilochus) A friend recently sent me to a NY Times article on teaching science in the universities, whose lead-in point was, of course, how often it is done poorly.  The article went on …

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EducationHigher Education

Deriding ease

In yesterday’s Required Readings, librarienne pointed us to a profile of a community college professor, Dr. Eduardo Vianna, which described many challenges facing community colleges, many of which are shared by those of us teaching at “non-elite” four year institutions as well.  The article highlights various topics that we at …

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EducationHigher Education

The ones we’re in it for

One of my regular courses is that notoriously difficult course that’s required by several different programs for completion and has all sorts of rumors swirling about it about how hard it is and how evil I am etc.  The course is intended to ensure students have proficient problem solving skills …

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Batman and Robin meme: Excuse me Mr... / Doctor!
EducationHigher EducationSecondary Education

It Takes a Village to Make a Doctor

I defended my dissertation Wednesday, which now makes me technically-officially Dr. Dan. Please update your Rolodexes accordingly. It also got me thinking about the long, meandering, and sometimes arduous path followed by those of us who do end up receiving doctorates, and just how many mentors are required along the …

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Dorchester High School Science
Critical ThinkingEducationHigher EducationPedagogy

Active learning as get-out-of-teaching?

A recent article in the Chronicle highlighted the growing shift toward student- or learner-centered teaching in higher education.  The idea is that rather than a professor lecture to a passive audience who soak up the wisdom of the sage on the stage, the class is structured around activities and discussion …

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