by Stephen Downes
[Sept] 25, 2014
16 reasons why this research will change how you look at news consumption
Onloine Journalism Blog,
This is not a listicle (list-based article) even though the headline suggests it is. The '16' in the title refers to 16 different ways of using news media, and the report compares them across different dimensions: engagement, amount remembered, and the like. So we get suggestions like: "Reading is about depth; listening is barely remembered." Which may be true, but I still love the audio podcasts, because it's not about memory (as an aside, I wish someone would one day analyze the relation between content and public service announcements in 1950s radio dramas in the U.S. and the social revolution that followed; I think there are all sorts of ways to show that the influence of audio is pervasive even if it is not remembered).
Professors on food stamps: The shocking true story of academia in 2014
I don't know what's so shocking about this. Adjunct and sessional instructors have been abysmally underpaid since the days in the 1990s when I was caught up in that racket. Maybe the new thing is that they now qualify for food stamps; when I was doing it I simply had to manage with whatever food I could scrounge. I can say this: my experience as a sessional convinced me that a life teaching at a university was not for me. And note well: the only reason the system still exists is because, when it's challenged, professors close ranks and defend it to the end. That's why I do not turn to, or depend on, university professors or the institutions that hire them to achieve genuine educational reform that would open the doors of academia to the people who, ultimately, pay for it.
A National Look at Student Data Privacy Legislation
Center for Digital Education,
This underscores the importance of data privacy in education: in the United States, "state policymakers introduced 110 bills on student data privacy in 36 states this session, with 30 of them passing both houses and 24 being signed into law, according to an analysis by the Data Quality Campaign." In particular, according to Thomas Murray, an advocate for data privacy, institutions should "review third-party contracts carefully to identify how student data will be kept secure and what happens to student data when the contract ends," and "educate teachers so they understand how to keep sensitive data secure."
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