Saturday, October 31, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
This may be the most important assessment of the nature of the corporate university. Tuchman, a well-known sociologist, studies her own institution, the University of Connecticut, although she writes about the institution in anonymous fashion and continues to not confirm that it is UConn. She charts how we have shifted from the university as a public good in the mid-twentieth university to the university as business. Many of the criticisms are familiar – universities are training not educating; accountability, auditing, and reporting have now overwhelmed both faculty and administrators as productivity measures but measures that often do not support fundamental activities such as teaching and research; the university is not a social institution, now it is an industry; branding and marketing consume ever greater amounts of resources (time and money); credentials are the products being sold; decisions are made to get higher rankings, even if it is understood that such rankings are flawed – but Tuchman offers remarkably rich detail and research to back her criticism. This is a book already drawing both praise and criticism, the best kind – one that stimulates debate about where higher education is heading. And it comes pretty close to home. Read it and decide for yourself.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Reanimated Frankenstein Exhibition:
Friday, October 23, 2009
The government's adoption of this new IT model warrants careful consideration of the model's broad economic implications-including the potential long-term benefits in terms of cost savings and avoidance as well as the near-term costs and other impacts of a transition from the current environment. Factors such as the number and rate of federal agencies adopting cloud computing, the length of their transitions to cloud computing, and the cloud computing deployment model (public, private, or hybrid) all will affect the total costs, potential benefits, and time required for the expected benefits to offset the investment costs.
Although cloud computing offers potentially significant savings to federal agencies by reducing their expenditures on server hardware and associated support costs, chief information officers, policymakers, and other interested parties should bear in mind a number of practical considerations:
- It will take, on average, 18-24 months for most agencies to redirect funding to support this transition, given the budget process.
- Some up-front investment will be required, even for agencies seeking to take advantage of public cloud options.
- Implementations may take several years, depending on the size of the agency and the complexity of the cloud model it selects (i.e., public, private, or hybrid).
- It could take as long as 4 years for the accumulated savings from agency investments in cloud computing to offset the initial investment costs; this timeframe could be longer if implementations are improperly planned or inefficiently executed.
The Writing Center at Harvard University
The Writing Center at Harvard University is perhaps the oldest formal writing center at an American university, and their complementary websitepresents a valuable trove of instructional handouts for writers young and old. On this page, visitors will find over a dozen helpful handouts with titles such as "How to Read an Assignment", "Essay Structure", "Developing aThesis", "Summary", and "Revising the Draft". Each piece is written in clear prose, and the advice offered is sound and practical. Also, visitors should note that the site also includes a link to Harvard's guide to citation and integration of sources, "Writing with Sources", and a selection of links to other related writing style guides.
>From The Scout Report, Copyright Internet Scout 1994-2009. http://scout.wisc.edu/
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Friday, October 16, 2009
The Limitations of Portfolios [October 16, 2009]
By Richard J. Shavelson , Stephen Klein and Roger Benjamin
"Colleges have come to realize the need to assess and improve student learning and to report their efforts to students, faculty, administrators, and the public; including policy makers and prospective students and their parents. The question is how to accomplish this. The roar of yesterday’s Spellings Commission and its vision of accountability is background noise to today’s cacophony of calls for more transparency and campus-based, authentic assessment of student learning. Some of the advocates for more authentic measures, such as Carol Schneider, president of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, have suggested using electronic portfolios -- collections of a student’s work products, such as term papers, research papers or descriptions, and the student’s written thoughts (“reflections”) about these work products and curricular experiences that are bundled together on an electronic platform. The presumed merits of portfolios, such as their supposed ability to drill down into the local curriculum, have been extolled elsewhere. Portfolios are simply not up to the task of providing the necessary data for making a sound assessment of student learning. They do not and cannot yield the trustworthy information that is needed for this purpose. However, there are approaches that can provide some of the information that is required..."
[Click on the link for the rest of the story: http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2009/10/16/shavelson ]
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Many of us are struggling to anticipate reading behavior in the digital age. This is one of the central problems investigated in a course I teach called, "Technology in the Lives of Children".
This article from the New York Times considers the effect of online reading on the "reading brain".
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Friday, October 09, 2009
Wednesday, October 07, 2009
"In conjunction with YinzCam from CMU, an iPhone app has been released that allows folks to take pics of potholes, send them to the city's 311 complaint line and it even geo-tags the image so the city can find the exact location of the pothole. What a great idea! Can also be used to report grafitti, missing street signs and dilapidated houses." http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09230/991552-53.stm
While Lewis Carroll is best known for his masterpieces in children’s literature, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, he had other creative talents. His work with photography was pioneering and helped to set the standard for portraiture with the camera. This book contains fifty-nine full-page reproductions of his portraits, most of which are of children, along with a critical introduction and a bibliography. Through the lens of Carroll’s camera are reflected images of children that are “haunting, unforgettable – and, to modern eyes, controversial – images that record the beauty, grace and innocence of Victorian childhood”. Several of the photographs are of Carroll’s muse, Alice Liddell, the child who inspired him to write Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.