All posts tagged with education

Why are biology classes ignoring insects?

2 minute read

A new content analysis of college biology textbooks finds that they have changed over the years to focus less and less on insects: A “College Textbooks Large...

MOOCs after five years

3 minute read

Five years ago, I was just starting to prepare a massive open online course (MOOC). That course development would be an 18-month adventure for me.

Race and the medical student

2 minute read

Ike Swetlitz in Stat has an article about the ways that some medical educators are trying to build a more anthropological knowledge of race and health in the...

The value of the pretest

1 minute read

Every semester for the past three years, I have begun my Anthropology 105 course with a “concept inventory” quiz, otherwise known as a pretest. My students a...

Archaeology is not boring!

1 minute read

Colleen Morgan has a new post at Middle Savagery that may serve as an intervention to those who claim that archaeology isn’t a romantic field: “Stop saying ‘...

A perspective on MOOCs as experimentation

2 minute read

I’ve been meaning to comment on this piece in the Chronicle of Higher Education about MOOCs, by Kevin Werbach: “Dont Call Us Rock Stars”. Werbach has been te...

Textbook troubles

1 minute read

A link from a reader: “‘Required reading’: As textbook prices soar, students try to cope”.

Changing science education

1 minute read

As the new semester is getting underway, the New York Times asked a bunch of scientists and students what they would advocate to improve science education. T...

Professing in the real world

less than 1 minute read

Education professor Sam Wineburg has a provocative essay in the Chronicle of Higher Education espousing a public impact agenda: “Choosing Real-World Impact O...

How a MOOC can affect the classroom

1 minute read

Duke University evolutionary biologist Mohamed Noor reflects on the way that teaching a MOOC has changed his classroom teaching: “The classroom experience re...

Quote: Donald Kagan on liberal arts education

less than 1 minute read

Yale University classicist and historian Donald Kagan has just retired from a long and distinguished career. He has an essay in the current New Criterion, re...

"Can you help me with my report?"

2 minute read

Lately, I’ve been getting an increasing number of e-mail requests from middle school and high school students, whose teachers have assigned them projects tha...

Eugenie Scott to retire from NCSE

less than 1 minute read

Eugenie Scott, executive director of the National Center for Science Education, has announced that she will retire by the end of this year.

Paleofuture radio MOOCs

1 minute read

The Chronicle of Higher Ed takes us to a time in the past, when massive radio correspondence courses were the wave of the future, including at my alma mater,...

The game theory exam story

less than 1 minute read

UCLA animal behavior professor Peter Nonacs describes his experiment in learning by doing: “Cheating to Learn: How a UCLA professor gamed a game theory midte...

Student attention spans are variable

1 minute read

There is much discussion in online education about the “15-minute rule”: that content longer than 15 minutes will lose students’ attention. Part of this is b...

Are MOOCs technical or practical?

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All the NY Times columnists will be writing about MOOCs before long, I suspect. Today it was David Brooks’ turn: “The Practical University”. His argument is ...

Binge learning

1 minute read

From Eli Dourado at The mlaut: “Binge Learning is Online Educations Killer App”.

"Average is over"

1 minute read

Today’s Thomas Friedman column notes the growing craze at major universities for massively open online courses, or MOOCs: “The Professors Big Stage”.

MOOC conversations

less than 1 minute read

An article on the way MOOCs are (or may be) changing university priorities: “What MOOCs Will, Wont, and Might Do”.

Notes from the learning revolution

1 minute read

My University of Wisconsin colleague Kris Olds has been writing about the international dimensions of massively open online courses (MOOCs). A recent entry (...

Assignment by algorithm

2 minute read

Another teaching-related post today, this one pointing to a post by Marc Bousquet: “Robots are grading your papers!” It’s about the sterile repetition of the...

Scott on science literacy

less than 1 minute read

Eugenie Scott, of the National Center for Science Education, has an editorial in the current Frontiers in Genetics. The title effectively conveys the piece’s...

Against onanistic essays

1 minute read

Claire Potter at the Chronicle’s “Tenured Radical” blog, has an interesting essay pondering why we assign students essays that nobody wants to read: “Grading...

Shirky essay on online courses

2 minute read

Clay Shirky reflects on the nature of college education and the potential disruptive nature of online courses: “Napster, Udacity and the Academy”. For those ...

Online education: beyond MOOCs

6 minute read

I’ve been doing a lot of reading about online and distance education lately. I’ll be writing about this topic recurrently during the next few weeks, so I wil...

Link parade

4 minute read

Here are some stories to entertain, amuse, or depress:

Making universities compete

2 minute read

David Glance discusses the online course frenzy, giving a boosterist perspective: “Will free online courseware from the US mean the end of (most) universitie...

Learning by app

1 minute read

From the Boston Globe: “Study suggests online courses as good as classroom”.

Hamsters in the wood shavings

less than 1 minute read

Karen Kelsky gives more advice on how to navigate graduate school to get the job you want: “Graduate school is a means to a job”.

No exams, learning-based outcomes

1 minute read

I no longer teach any courses with exams. The last one was my introductory course, Principles of Biological Anthropology, which has now gone to weekly quizze...

The open textbook niche

1 minute read

A sobering Sunday read about how elementary and secondary school textbooks are put together today: “Afraid of your child’s math textbook? You should be.”

In the lab of Shakhashiri

1 minute read

Nature this week profiles Hoffman:Shakhashiri:2012 my University of Wisconsin-Madison colleague Bassam Shakhashiri, now president of the American Chemical So...

Blogs rank high in online education

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This morning I read a notice from our Division of Continuing Studies, pointing to how their online resource library had received more than one million visits...

Medieval methods

less than 1 minute read

Psychologist Alison Gopnik, in MacLeans “In conversation: Alison Gopnik”.

Textbooks leaving students behind

less than 1 minute read

The Chronicle of Higher Education reports on a survey of nearly 2000 undergraduate students on 13 varied college campuses:

The cost of a premier faculty

2 minute read

The Guardian has an article titled, “Richard Dawkins heads line-up at private 18,000-a-year university”.

My turn as a science fair judge in Italy

3 minute read

Yesterday I had the distinctive experience as a judge of a scientific poster session, featuring the work of Italian high school students. The session was in ...

Science Pub, day of creationism

3 minute read

I had a wonderful afternoon Sunday at the Madison Science Pub. The featured guest was Ron Numbers, the historian of science at UW-Madison whose research has ...

Scientific American on evolution education

less than 1 minute read

Scientific American has an online feature with new articles by Katherine Harmon, “New Challenges for Evolution Education”. The tagline is, “Five years after ...

On Wisconsin

less than 1 minute read

The University of Wisconsin is at the top of the rankings when it comes to internet “brand equity”:

High school genomics

4 minute read

Ronald Bailey writes in the January Reason about his experiences with personal genomics (“Ill Show You My Genome. Will You Show Me Yours?”). He’s a booster, ...

STEM plunk

less than 1 minute read

Natalie Angier, who knows something about how to introduce science to the masses, blows off some steam about STEM in this week’s Science Times:

Blogging and teaching

less than 1 minute read

If you’re an instructor curious about how to introduce blogs in your courses, you may want to read this post by Daniel Lende at the new Neuroanthropology. He...

Social media in education

1 minute read

Krystal D’Costa (Anthropology in Practice) links to a mini-documentary about the role of social media in the education of “Gen-Y”: “Decade 2: Encouraging Edu...

Professors who reject technology

1 minute read

From the Chronicle of Higher Education, an article by Jeffrey Young: “College 2.0: Teachers Without Technology Strike Back.”

Plagiarism season

1 minute read

It’s that time of year again, when newspapers start reminding us that cheating and plagiarism happen.

Tenure denial

less than 1 minute read

If you need something to heat up your July, you can check out the NY Times forum, “What if College Tenure Dies?”.

Graphic biology teacher survey results

2 minute read

Several people (e.g., P. Z. Myers, Jerry Coyne) have passed along a poster representation of some statistics on evolution, creationism, and other stuff in se...

UC-Berkeley genetic tests for freshmen

1 minute read

I’m not sure which tags to apply to this story. I’m torn between “colossally-bad-ideas” and “university-auditions-for-big-brother”.

"STEM blows"

less than 1 minute read

The Science Insider listens to actor Tim Daly, advocating for science education, who thinks the officially sanctioned ed-school terminology is bad marketing.

Bake sales minus the baking

less than 1 minute read

Remember when we were going to have to hold bake sales to save the schools? Well, New York has found one way to solve that problem: “New York schools’ ban on...

Texas, the textbook gorilla

2 minute read

The other New York Times Magazine article that I found interesting this weekend (following up on yesterday’s post) is about the Texas State Board of Educatio...

Don't get a Ph.D.

less than 1 minute read

This deserves to be read widely, especially this time of year:

Neandertals for kids

less than 1 minute read

There’s not really an exciting story to go with the headline, but after it dropped into my news feed, I had to link it:

Kansas creationism survey

1 minute read

According to a Fort Hays State University poll, Kansas may be headed for another crisis in science education:

Billable hours for professors

5 minute read

Yesterday’s post on MIT OpenCourseware touched on some of the difficulties of independent study using online tools. Three barriers stand in the way – one pra...

What can you learn for free

1 minute read

I’m all in favor of self-educating – most of my genetics I learned on my own. So I was interested to see what you can really learn from free online sources l...

Oh, for a muse of fire…

1 minute read

Science last week had an “Education Forum” feature, written by European education researchers, titled, “Introducing modern science into schools.” The piece d...

Writing upward

less than 1 minute read

Since I’ve already contributed to bellyaching about student writing assignments, it’s only fair to point to a Wired article that says students are getting b...

Teaching writing

less than 1 minute read

College classes are starting around the country, but writing assignments haven’t been submitted yet. Time to brace yourself – Stanley Fish blogs about what c...

"Creationists made me do it"

less than 1 minute read

In last week’s Science, a letter from biologist Patrick Keeling that’s almost too good to be true:

The tuition Singularity

5 minute read

The Singularity is a future time when, in theory, the pace of technological change becomes so great that we cannot predict the course of future developments ...

Link: More on Intelligent Design

less than 1 minute read

An excellent discussion of the legal issues involved in current attempts to put intelligent design in public school curricula is an article by Michael C. Dor...