The Napoleon Complex
Originally posted on Half an Hour, September 14, 2007.
I just want to capture my part of a discussion that took place on Matthew Tabor's website.
To introduce this, I'll quote part of the post I was responding to (I don't want to cite everything in the post because his site is not licensed under Creative Commons):
The Journal of Common Sense in Education has a new submission ready for peer-review: rightly or wrongly, appearance is a factor. I can’t be too bothered when I read about wasted time and resources dedicated to questions that could be answered properly by anyone who has a) left their home in the last 20 years and/or b) has firing neurons. Why?
Because I’m pleased that third-rate researchers are putting time into trivial subjects instead of mucking up research that actually matters. It’s the lesser of two evils.
Researchers Julia Smith of Oakland University in Rochester, Mich., and Nancy Niehmi of Nazareth College of Rochester, N.Y., analyzed test results and other data for nearly 9,000 boys across the country who started kindergarten in 1998. They found that kindergarten teachers systematically perceived boys who were shorter than average—or even just shorter than the other boys in their class—to be less skilled in reading, mathematics, and general knowledge than their test results indicated.
Here is my response:
And the final reply:
I’d like to be very clear - I discussed only the researcher’s work. That is sticking to the merits of the argument.
Though I appreciate your willingness to let me have the last word, I expressed what I wanted to in the articles and comments. There’s just no need for more, it’s all there.
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