Tag Archives: education

A great Albert Einstein quote on critical thinking—and being a cyborg

I stumbled on the quote below while reading Walter Isaacson’s excellent recent biography of Albert Einstein. Einstein was being asked by an American journalist about the anti-theoretical pragmatism of Thomas Edison. Edison liked people with a lot of practical knowledge in their … Continue reading

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AC Grayling: For University Students, Stop the Hand-Holding?

In today’s Guardian, philosopher AC Grayling offers his view of the role of a university education: University is emphatically not about spoon-feeding and hand-holding through courses, but the very opposite. It is not about maximising contact hours, but about autonomy … Continue reading

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The Baloney Detection Kit

This is something special and new. The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science has just put out its first video, and it’s pretty good:

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Quote of the Day II

Alan Jacobs, of The New Atlantis , puts in a good word for writing well, and writing teachers: Again and again in my career I have seen that people who can write well — in almost any field — give … Continue reading

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Andrew Sullivan Sasses Sarah Palin for Sassing Barack Obama Over His Special Olympics Joke

Today at the Daily Dish: The woman who used a Down Syndrome infant as a campaign prop attacks a presidential joke: “I hope President Obama’s comments do not reflect how he truly feels about the special needs community.” Why am I … Continue reading

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Obama’s Example—and the Obama Effect?

The NY Times today: Educators and policy makers, including Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, have said in recent days that they hope President Obama’s example as a model student could inspire millions of American students, especially blacks, to higher academic … Continue reading

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Lecturing Doesn’t Work?

The NY Times reports today that, at M.I.T, the traditional freshman physics lecture class of 300 students or more is being replaced by hands-on learning in small groups. Money quote: The physics department has replaced the traditional large introductory lecture with … Continue reading

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Should Parents Have Substantial Freedom in the Religious Education of Their Children?

As a liberal agnostic, whenever I hear illiberal agnostics or atheists hint that maybe the State should set parameters on parents’ ability to provide religious education to their children, I cringe.  It is extremely presumptuous to assume that the State can direct the … Continue reading

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“Learning to read slowly and carefully”: On the Value of Literature in a Fast-Paced Internet World

With the MLA conference coming up in San Francisco, Inside Higher Ed quotes an MLA report on the importance of teaching literature to undergraduates:  “Sustained, deep engagements with literary works and literary language open perceptions of structure, texture, and the layering of meanings … Continue reading

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The Literate v. The Illiterate: Chris Hedges on the Real American Divide

Money quote from Chris Hedges’s recent thought provoking article: We live in two Americas. One America, now the minority, functions in a print-based, literate world. It can cope with complexity and has the intellectual tools to separate illusion from truth. … Continue reading

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42% of American College Graduates Do Not Read Books After Graduating: A Sobering Statistic From Chris Hedges

According to author, and former NY Times reporter, Chris Hedges: A third of high school graduates, along with 42 percent of college graduates, never read a book after they finish school. Eighty percent of the families in the United States … Continue reading

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Virtual Reality?: Is an Internet Class Really a Class?

A professor, in The Chronicle of Higher Education, sasses Internet class-taking: At the most basic level, to be a student has always meant actually dragging one’s exhausted body into class with readings in hand, being (more or less) awake, alert, … Continue reading

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I’m Not Ready for English 101 Yet?!?: Why Didn’t Anybody Tell Me?

When students first come to a community college, and take the placement tests, they are sometimes shocked to discover that they’re not yet ready for English 101 etc. The short item below, from today’s Inside Higher Education, suggests that bringing a readiness test to … Continue reading

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