EducationHigher EducationPedagogyPop Quiz

Pop Quiz: Videos in the Classroom. How much is too much?

For the courses that I teach sometimes a demo is needed to show the principle that is being discussed. Sometimes that demo can be physical objects that are set into motion, sometimes they are animations, and sometimes they are video clips. There is always some type of lecture before and …

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Charity Soup
EducationHigher Education

Charity Work: My Life as an Adjunct Part II

*This is a continuation of my previous post Charity Work: My Life as an Adjunct Part I. I have been commenting on the points that James Hoff has made in his response to being profiled in the New York Times. I have covered a couple of his points in my previous …

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EducationHigher EducationPop Quiz

Pop Quiz: Is Mike Rowe Delusional?

This video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VSFnETYcOcw has been making its rounds among the teachers in my school.  It is a very short video (1 minute so watch it) in which Mike Rowe talks about how important the skilled trades are, and that there is currently a skills gap. I admit that I agree with …

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Critical ThinkingEducationFeaturedHigher EducationReligionScience

Creationists in Astronomy Class are Not Fun!

Every semester as part of the general astronomy class I teach it is required that we do a few lectures on the history of astronomy. It is intended that we start all the way back into ancient astronomy and talk about how the people of the time viewed their Earth …

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Lady with an Ermine
EducationHigher EducationPop QuizPrimary EducationSecondary Education

Pop Quiz: Of Ferret Pee and Snake Hisses

No corny Valentines Day Stories for Pop Quiz.  I only recognize the true holiday of my birthday today!!! In celebration of this wondrous day I give you a corny teaching story instead. Years and years ago I taught a physics lab class at a farm town University.  Normally, I would start my …

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Charity Soup
EducationHigher EducationUncategorized

Charity Work: My Life as an Adjunct Part I

Every semester I give my students the opportunity to ask one question of me. I tell them they can ask me anything that is not too terribly personal but I welcome questions giving them career advice, off topic subjects that we cannot cover in class, or just general what classes …

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Snowstorm of 1922
EducationPop QuizUncategorized

Pop Quiz: Brrrr…It’s too cold outside! Keep those students at home!?

Most of the United States is having one of the worst winters in years. Even as I type this it is in the negative digits where I live and the wind chill is bitingly bad. Also, because of these ridiculous temperatures every school in the area, including major universities and …

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Critical ThinkingHigher Education

Why making tuition free isn’t a good idea

[Note: I originally published much of this analysis on another now-defunct blog during the 2012 Quebec Student Protests, but thought it relevant in light of our recent discussion of tuition and government funding.] I think the system of higher education in Quebec provides a useful and interesting comparison to the …

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A shelf full of books.
Required Readings

Required Readings, 31 December 2013

Happy New Year’s Eve, skeptics and educators! Here are some readings to get you started today: -A Chicago-area library rejects a donation from “Friendly Atheist” Hemant Mehta, saying he represents a “hate group.” –A NPR poll says that a quarter of American parents feel as though their child’s school doesn’t …

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A shelf full of books.
Required Readings

Required Readings, 19 December 2013

Creationists rejected! College rankings rebutted! Deaf students disenfranchised! Welsh students going hungry? Read all about it in today’s required readings. A college president has a beef with the prospect of federal ranking of colleges. Colleges may as well be saying ‘Deaf people not welcome here‘. Welsh schools are cracking down on …

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