01 June 2015

Items to Share; 31 May 2015

Education Focus
  • The Education Myth by Ricardo Hausmann - Project Syndicate 'In an era characterized by political polarization and policy paralysis, we should celebrate broad agreement on economic strategy wherever we find it. One such area of agreement is the idea that the key to inclusive growth is, as then-British Prime Minister Tony Blair put in his 2001 reelection campaign, “education, education, education.” If we broaden access to schools and improve their quality, economic growth will be both substantial and equitable. As the Italians would say: magari fosse vero. If only it were true.'
  • The Trick of Teaching - HuntingEnglish   We know a great deal about the human memory, but there is still so much more to know. Much of what we learn is counterintuitive and unveils the idosyncratic of our mind and memory. One such quirk is that when students expect to teach new material that they remember it so much better.
  • The case against inquiry-based learning | Education in Chemistry Blog 'Writing recently in The Irish Times, William Reville, emeritus professor of biochemistry at University College Cork, stated that newer teaching methods employed in the UK and Ireland are ‘sharply inferior to the older teaching methods they supplanted’. His article highlighted a 30% difference between educational scores in China, where whole-class teaching is employed, and those locally, where child-centred methods are used.'
  • Laurie Taylor on academics v administrators | Times Higher Education 'Managers and administrators who once had a mute background presence are now a noisy part of the daily life of every scholar. Their ranks continue to swell even though the UK is already one of the very few countries in the world where non-academic staff already outnumber academics [...] No wonder that my weekly [...] column is no longer stuffed with professors and readers but with directors of corporate affairs and human relations and the heads of research excellence framework strategy, overseas recruitment, research impact, fundraising, external relations and brand management. No wonder that what used to be a mildly patronising relationship between dons and their administrative servants has now become more and more like a battle for control.'
Other Business
  • ‘Cheeky Nando’s’ – Lingua Franca -  The Chronicle of Higher Education 'Humility is always a good thing. I got a dose of it recently, courtesy of a BuzzFeed article posted to Facebook by a friend of mine, an Anglo-American journalist. The article was called “Americans On Tumblr Are Trying To Find Out What A ‘Cheeky Nando’s’ Is And Are Struggling” and concerned a meme that had become popular in England.'
  • Players with more Time | More Intelligent Life 'Slowing time is linked to a state of flow, or being in the zone. Playing cricket for Kent one July morning in 2003, I made 149 runs in about three hours. I scored faster than ever before, but felt in no hurry to get anywhere, even to a hundred. I felt the rhythm of the ball in sync with the downswing of the bat. My mind revved at the same pace as the game. There was no sense of rush (the ball arriving too soon) or impatience (wanting it sooner). There was a suspension of ambition that was rare for me. The innings didn’t feel like a stepping-stone, even though it turned out to be, but an end in itself. I felt very clearly, that high summer’s day, that my job was not to get in the way—to be the conduit rather than the agent. [ ] The match was not rushing forwards, opportunities were not slipping by, and I understood, just that one time, a line from Marvell’s “To His Coy Mistress”: “Though we cannot make our sun/Stand still, yet we will make him run.” '

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