Document fron US Atomic Energy Commission stamped "top secret" and "confidential"
GovernmentHigher Education

FOIA Abuse Could Become a Serious Problem for Academics

Academics take heed: if you are employed by a public university, the contents of your email account are subject to the Freedom of Information Act. This means activists, critics, or any member of the public with an axe to grind can request copies for a nominal administrative fee and quote-mine …

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Education

Teaching as We’re Taught

The appeal from tradition is one of the logical fallacies that skeptics often reference. So many claims in pseudoscience rely on it, yet it is so easy to refute. People did a lot of really stupid things in the past, the fact that they did them long ago doesn’t mean …

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Education

Why I Do Re-Dos

When my students get a low grade on a written assignment, I allow them to revise it and resubmit it for a higher grade an unlimited amount of times before final grades are due. Why? Because I love giving up even more of my scarce free time. Well, not really. …

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red and white stop sign
FeminismPedagogySecondary Education

Sex Ed: Teaching consent

Trigger warnings: Sexual abuse of children   As unexpectedly as a virgin giving birth I found myself in charge of teaching sex ed to 6th graders. It’s been an interesting (and sometimes depressing) experience. We don’t have any of that “Abstinence Only” crap over here and while the parents were …

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oh no!
Higher Education

A First Year as a Professor, in GIFs

A little over a year ago, I accepted a tenure track position at a small college in New England. I was… thrilled. I was really blown away by the school visit and it felt really… comfortable. I did my bachelors in physics at a small college in Pennsylvania, so I …

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FeaturedHigher Education

Sorry Bernie – Tuition free college can’t ever come back!

In the not too distant past, your average college student could get a degree in four years and walk away with no debt from almost every public university.  Whatever the costs where, they could be offset with a summer job and maybe a few hundred bucks from the parents.  In …

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Exclusion, Segregation, Integration, Inclusion
EducationPedagogySecondary EducationSpecial EducationUncategorized

Competing needs

Author’s note: I’m sorry this got posted in an unfinished version. I swear I’d finished it, but somehow my last additions got lost and an unfinished but saved version got posted.   I’m a big fan of inclusion as a principle in school. If you’re not familiar with the concepts, …

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Education

Academic Dishonesty

Dan wrote a good post on Academic Dishonesty a while back. Mine doesn’t address the administrative side at all so I’d recommend reading his for that. My planned post for this week is delayed because this distracted me: Yesterday I began grading my first big writing assignment of the year. I got …

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Image of 15th-c. scribe Jean Miélot
FeaturedHigher Education

Universities should be employing surplus PhDs–as administrative staff.

Of the many criticisms I hear levelled at the current state of higher education, I would say that the following four are among the most frequent: The current reliance on contingent faculty rather than full-time professors is both undermining educational quality and creating a permanent academic underclass of PhDs working …

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Empty stage with a stool and a mic stand; sign behind reads "Comedy"
Higher Education

Top Ten Ways Academia and Stand-Up Comedy are Secretly the Same Job

  10. You basically have to take any paid gig you can get (beggars can’t be choosers!) 9. Unusually high rates of anxiety and depression among your peers 8. Constant pressure to write new material 7. Sometimes you take a long trip just to end up talking to an empty room 6. Audiences are …

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