15 juin 2014

To write English like a professor, don’t rely on Google translate

The ConversationBy Mike Groves. Thankfully, nobody speaks academic English as a first language. The English of the university is a very particular form that has specific features and conventions. Sometimes, this is just referred to as “academic style”.
It used to be a matter of instinct – what felt right. But now a large amount of research is using a “big data” approach to analyse millions of words of academic writing. This has resulted in projects such as the Academic Word List, the 570 most commonly used words in academic text across disciplines, (excluding the 2,000 most common words in English). More...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:56 - - Permalien [#]

Teachers remain divided on performance-related pay

The ConversationAuthor: Gemma Ware. Interviewed: Thomas CurranHoward Stevenson and Conor Ryan. A new survey has found teachers remain divided over proposals to link their pay increases to the performance of pupils in their class. A small majority – 53% of 1,163 primary and secondary school teachers polled – supports the idea. The government is extending performance related pay to teachers in the first five years of their career from September 2014. Similar steps were brought in by the Labour government for more senior teachers in 2000. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:54 - - Permalien [#]

The Dumbest Fucking Guy on the Planet

By David Silbey. Is back, and Politico thinks that he’s worth quoting on Iraq:

“This is the education of Barack Obama, but it’s coming at a very high cost to the Syrian people to the Iraqi people [and] to the American national interest,” said Doug Feith, a top Pentagon official during the George W. Bush administration.
“They were pretty blasé,” Feith said of the Obama team. “The president didn’t take seriously the warnings of what would happen if we withdrew and he liked the political benefits of being able to say that we’re completely out.”

Just to remind yourself of how hopelessly incompetent Douglas Feith was during the Iraq War, I offer this and this. You could also just go with Tommy Franks’ evaluation, used for the title of this post, and be done with it. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:27 - - Permalien [#]

Three issues with the case for banning laptops

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/castingoutnines-45.pngBy Robert Talbert. This article, “The Case for Banning Laptops in the Classroom”, written by Dan Rockmore for The New Yorker, has been getting considerable airtime on social media this week. As a classroom instructor I can certainly attest to the power of technology to distract and interfere with student learning. But I had three issues with the “case” being made. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:26 - - Permalien [#]

Why Joyce’s Syphilis Burns People Up

By . Kevin Birmingham’s new The Most Dangerous Book: The Battle for James Joyce’s Ulysses is itself embattled, having caused a kerfuffle within the Joycean scholarly community. At issue is the author’s argument, taking up five of his 300-plus pages, that throughout the composition of Ulysses (and before, and after) Joyce was suffering from syphilis. The book, a history of Ulysses‘s composition and legal troubles, upsets a tradition of scholarly skirting around the question of Joyce’s syphilis, and some academics are not pleased. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:25 - - Permalien [#]

Yesterday’s Errors

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/icons/lingua-franca-nameplate.pngBy Anne Curzan. Last week I listened to a conversation on “All Things Considered” between National Public Radio’s Robert Siegel and author Ammon Shea about his new book, Bad English: A History of Linguistic Aggravation. It was fundamentally a discussion of language change and attitudes about language change, running the gamut from—to quote Siegel—“linguistic scolds to the most permissive writers on language. ”Shea, who puts himself at the permissive end of the spectrum, explained how some words that we now consider completely standard, such as lunch and balding, were once considered errors. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:23 - - Permalien [#]

Sono Tornata!

http://chronicle.com/img/photos/biz/icons/lingua-franca-nameplate.pngBy Lucy Ferriss. Having left my post at Lingua Franca four months ago to work on a book and (very incidentally) dabble in Italian, I thought I’d launch my return (Sono tornata = I have returned) with a report. Thanks to a Lingua Franca commenter, I spent about 10 minutes a day from February to late May on the website Duolingo, earning lingots and hearts and wondering why this website seemed so obsessed with cooking in the kitchen. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:22 - - Permalien [#]

5 Tips From a MOOC Producer

By . It was the second Google Hangout On Air broadcast for the “History and Future of (Mostly) Higher Education.” Professors and students at three universities—Duke, Stanford, and the University of California at Santa Barbara—were engaged in conversation while dozens of viewers watched, asking questions in the Google Hangout and in the MOOC forums and live-tweeting the session. Seven minutes in, without warning, Google Hangout stopped recording and broadcasting. Viewers were left with blank screens, and there was no way to show the session later … and the seconds were ticking past. A quick Google search offered no solutions, and the interface was not responding. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:19 - - Permalien [#]

Changing Higher Education to Change the World

By . What remains from a MOOC after the final video has ended and the last paper has been peer-assessed? The most exciting part of my recent MOOC on the “History and Future of (Mostly) Higher Education” was the spirited exchanges among the participants. So that is the question. How can a MOOC be more than a “one off”? What remains for the participants after the MOOC is over? What infrastructure is required beyond the MOOC platform to turn a massive learning experience into a movement in the real world?
Before I address this movement, I should mention that I had two quite different kinds of motivations for signing up to teach a MOOC offered by my university, Duke, on the Coursera platform. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:18 - - Permalien [#]

What We Risk if We Risk Nothing at All

By . At the beginning of “History and Future of (Mostly) Higher Education,” the students in both the MOOC and the face-to-face class at Duke University were asked to write about their favorite teacher. I didn’t hesitate in my answer: Karen Hevelston. Her first day was as a substitute in my high-school art class. After dutifully giving the assigned painting project, she strolled through the grouped tables quietly making comments. More...

Posté par pcassuto à 19:17 - - Permalien [#]