Category Archives: education

Thumb on the PayScale

In my last post, I took issue with the PayScale college rankings, as well as with how economics reporters framed these rankings, citing their low calculated Return on Investment as evidence that these colleges “make” students poor. Jordan Weissmann has graciously responded to my critique. … Continue reading

Posted in education, higherEd, psychology, science | Tagged , , , | 19 Comments

The Absurdity of Ranking Colleges by Graduate Salaries

Jordan Weissman has moved from the Atlantic, and is now covering economics at Slate. He has a post up provocatively titled (it is Slate, after all) “What College Will Leave you Poorest?” which covers the Payscale college salary rankings, in which … Continue reading

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Grit and Galton: Is psychological research into traits inherently problematic?

Is all psychological research on individual differences racist? Can psychologists ever separate our shameful past of scientific racism from the methods, techniques and questions that have grown from it? A recent post criticizing the concept of “grit” (and Angela Duckworth, … Continue reading

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How much does it matter how students feel?

As I prepare my tenure portfolio, I am catching up on entering in my student evaluation data and comments into my big spreadsheet. While I don’t think student evaluations should serve as the only data by which to judge teachers, … Continue reading

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Teaching and learning, labor and fairness

It seems a requirement that any conversation about higher education in America must begin and end with costs and economic outcomes. Along the way, our economic analysts nod to the power of knowledge (economic research shows it improves career prospects!), … Continue reading

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Assume a spherical cow: The Common Core and recess

The Common Core State Standards are an admirable effort to give our students a firm foundation of knowledge, and teachers guidance about content. I’m an advocate of a rich, content-based (rather than skills-based) curriculum, and I sincerely hope that the … Continue reading

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My Teaching Philosophy (part 327b)

I’m putting some finishing touches on my syllabi here the night before classes start, and I thought I would share with my blog readers a one-page statement of my teaching philosophy that I put on each of my syllabi. Anyone … Continue reading

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Hopes and Fears about Obama’s Change in Higher Education

I am trying to be optimistic, and I will get there by the time the semester starts in a week and a half. But today, with the White House releasing its plan to make college more affordable, I am finding … Continue reading

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Cedar’s Digest reads “Twilight of the Elites”

This week at the beach I also got a chance to read Chris Hayes’ superb social commentary, “Twilight of the Elites.” Instead of gathering thoughts later to write a blog post, I tweeted some thoughts as they occurred to me. … Continue reading

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Some Personal History and The Mind at Work

So this post is going to be about fixing my house, my dad, and a great great book I’ve read recently. As is my inclination, I’ll find parallels between things and other things. This summer my dad and I (mostly … Continue reading

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