Tuesday, January 25, 2011

New to the higher ed beat? Read this.

links from the Educated Reporter blog for following higher ed news. No, you may not agree with the editorial stance of every source listed. So what. Since when did depending on mainstream corporate media and cherry picking sources for consensus constitute good research?


I'd add academic, labor and other blogs to the source list but that's another post. What sources would you add? The Educated Reporter, Linda Perlstein, public editor for the Education Writers Association, writes, 
Last week I posted resources I think are helpful for K-12 reporters to stay abreast of national issues. Today, here is what I recommend to new higher ed reporters: 

  • —You simply cannot cover the beat without signing up to receive daily bulletins from Inside Higher Ed and the Chronicle of Higher Education. It would be like obsessing over celebrities without reading People and Us. Touring Provence without visiting Aix or Arles or Avignon. (Oh wait, I did that once, but I had my reasons.) Everything on IHE is free, and the Chronicle gives journalist free subscriptions and is very generous about lifting you over the paywall for links and such.
  • Lumina Foundation send out links to the day’s higher ed headlines—unfortunately, only the headlines, but it is something.
  • —Blogs worth reading: Joanne Jacobs on community colleges at Hechinger, Quick and the Ed, the New America Foundation blogs, Mike Kirst’s College Puzzle, Center for College Affordability and Productivity, and, if you are into admissions issues from a consumer perspective, The Choice at the New York Times.

What am I missing? 

Comment:

Other worthwhile bulletins:

  • _University Business Magazine's daily newsletter, which thoroughly rounds up higher-ed news stories sandwiched between job postings, new product announcements and contracts: http://bit.ly/awGikF
  • _ The National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities compiles top headlines and links daily ... even though today its Twitter feed promoted an opinion piece in a North Dakota newspaper that badly distorted a recent AP story on collegiate learning. www.naicu.edu/rss/newsroom.asp
  • _ The American Council on Education's Division of Government and Public Affairs sends out headlines/links twice a week: http://bit.ly/i2Rgpr 
You won't miss much if you get these.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

trolling the academented blogosphere

Licensed under Creative Commons AttributionNoncommercialShare Alike Some rights reserved by davidsilver

...annotated, of course, via brief post excerpts, most but not all from blogs of the academented precariat. I was collecting links to post to the Contingent Academics Mailing List and, mindful of recent admonition not to post full length articles, excerpting briefly from opening. When that post in the making got long, mindful of recent complaints about irrelevant, time-wasting posts, I decided to blog my efforts. Then, if so inclined, I could post the link. 

No particular order other than as they came up in my feed reader. Any perceived organization, thematic or otherwise, is either serendipitous or imagined. However, more than one post on same topic, commenting on same material or from same blogger are listed adjacently.

This could become a feature, but I'd like to come up with a better - and shorter - name. I might even theme or otherwise organize them...




This was one of the worst weeks in recent UC,CSU, and CCC history, as the new Democratic governor dished out triple $500 million cuts to all the segments ($400 m to the community colleges), neck-and-neck for the cutting record of his Republican predecessor.  Comments on this blog and elsewhere suggest that some people think this is a clever political ploy, but many people are on the verge of giving up on the idea that California higher ed will ever recover under our political system.  

Friday, January 14, 2011

Academe reviews Alex Kudera's adjunct novel

A Novel Departure: Fight for Your Long Day: A Novel. Alex Kudera. Kensington, MD: Atticus, 2010. Reviewed for Academe by Isaac Sweeney who writes, 


I laughed at parts of Fight for Your Long Day, a new novel (excerpt Ch 3 online) by Alex Kudera. At other parts of the novel, I felt inspired. But most of all, Fight for Your Long Day made me sad. Part of my sadness came because Kudera writes elegantly and has created an insightful, tragic, sometimes comic protagonist (I dare not call him a hero) named Cyrus Duffleman, whom the narrator calls "Duffy." He reminds me of Hamlet—a bit of an introverted whiner, but the kind you love to hear whine. I'm sad when Duffleman is sad. I'm even sadder when he has bits of hope, like when there's the prospect of an affair with an attractive student, because I know it won't work out for him. As with any other effective tragic character, there's something satisfying in watching his tragedy unfold.

Alex Kudera, photo from When Falls the Colliseum

The bulk of my sadness comes from my ability to relate to Duffleman. As I write this, I am a full-time nontenure- track instructor in Virginia. I teach four first-year writing courses at James Madison University and one composition course at Blue Ridge Community College. I supplement my teaching income with freelance writing and editing. Fight for Your Long Day is set in Philadelphia, and Duffleman, like me, is a contingent instructor (I dare not call him a professor). He, too, teaches at multiple colleges and universities. He supplements his teaching income with a tutoring job at the corporatized University of America and with shift work as a security guard at another college.... Duffleman's (and Kudera's) insights are profound at times....But it is Duffleman's hope in the face of adversity that is inspiring to a fellow contingent faculty member. I am better for reading it....

After reading the novel, I'm sad also because relatively few of us are doing more than complaining to air. Cyrus Duffleman and Fight for Your Long Day cast light on this situation. I hope the novel is popular enough to make a big change; it has already changed me.


Read the complete review online at Academe. Visit Duffy's Facebook page and Alex's blog, The United States of Kudera

Academe's reviewer Isaac Sweeney is a writer who spent three years as a full-time non-tenure-track instructor. James Madison University did not renew his appointment for the spring 2011 semester. His essays about the profession have appeared in the Chronicle of Higher Education and Inside Higher Ed. His e-mail address is sweeneyi@brcc.edu.

AAUP » Publications & Research » Academe » 2011 Issues » January-February 2011 » Book Reviews

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Thursday, January 13, 2011

2011 Days of Action for PublicEd

    Recently, board members of UPTE-CWA 91119 (representing over 10000 Healthcare, Research and Technical Employees at the University of California.) voted unanimously to endorse the March 2, 2011 Strike and Day of Action for Public Education. Other actions are being planned across the country and internationally. Follow plans and updates at the Defend Education group 
"International Student Movement"
The "International Student Movement" is an independent platform for groups and activists around the world to exchange information, network and unite in our struggle against the increasing privatisation of [and for free and emancipatory] public education!


Questions? Suggestions? Get in touch with us at united.for.education@gmail.com

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Learning Analytics: a foundation for informed change in Higher Education

Agreeing with the methodology, validity or purpose of Learning Analytics and Educational Data Mining is not necessary.

What is necessary: not ignoring them or their implications for the future of higher ed. Consider them tools you too can use.

故曰:知彼知己,百戰不殆;不知彼而知己,一勝一負;不知彼,不知己,每戰必殆。
So it is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss.
If you only know yourself, but not your opponent, you may win or may lose.
If you know neither yourself nor your enemy, you will always endanger yourself.

Learning Analytics: EDUCAUSE

View more presentations from gsiemens.

So what is to be done? Learn. Try LAK11, the MOOC.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Another MLA Online Roundup « Post Academic

Still no personally crafted MLA Convention-from-afar round-up, instead I spent the day community blogging, researching a story on, would you believe, the local Chamber of Commerce (which displays the same stunning disregard for transparency as highered admin), setting up for and settling into a couple of open online classes/workshops, one an experimental online super-mega-class, a MOOC.

Both delivery and subject for this last course, Learning and Knowledge Analytics, have major implications for the future of highered and academic labor. Why am I doing it? Curiosity, it's free, definitely a change of pace and, unless you are into ostrich, relevant.

Anyway, back to Post-academic's excellent MLA Convention roundup...

Image Source,Photobucket Uploader Firefox ExtensionI would have made this a Twitter roundup, but the #mla11 feed is admirably polite and professional, aside from concerns about cliquishness among a certain group. To which I say, this is a convention, not high school, so make your own group if you don’t like the dominant group. It can be done. It’s a large convention, not a cafeteria. Watch “Police Academy” or “Stripes” or any other inspiring misfit comedy, take some notes and call me in the morning.

Anyway, on to the roundup:

The message of the digression (yes, intended or not, there's a message, or subtext if you prefer): nice to hear about the convention, but we all still have lives. Haven't checked recently, but not much about #mla1 on the adj-l list, not even about the "Academy in Hard Times" opening day initiative. A different quantum universe.

Posted via email from Academentia

Sunday, January 9, 2011

the academic divide

I'll get back to MLALA, Boston AHA and other convention follow-ups tomorrow or whenever the blog and media post-mortems roll in to supplement in-the-moment twitterati observations, not to mention the wealth of links on the rss reader to sort. In the meantime, Ominvore's annotated, academic-themed links fill the gap.

Communicating across the academic divide: Universities must nurture interdisciplinary relationships, which can lead to creative ideas that could fuel the economy's long-term health. Are English departments killing the humanities? From Minding the Campus, Russell K. Nieli on why Caltech is in a class by itself. What does a relationship between the intuitive symbolic work of children and the design of contemporary technologies mean for the academic world? The man who financed Facebook is offering 20 two-year $100,000 fellowships to teenagers with big ideas — as long as they leave university. An article on the 7 most important classes to take in college. With a cross-disciplinary approach to education, we can train a new class of problem-solvers to address current global challenges, from poverty to climate change. No talking in class: Campus liberals sacrificed free expression on the altar of political correctness. What happens when college is oversold: Why are more and more college graduates not entering the class of professional, technical and managerial workers that has been considered the main avenue of employment? An interview with Ronald A. Smith, author of Pay for Play: A History of Big-Time College Athletic Reform. For-profit college companies are taking in enormous amounts of federal student aid money by recruiting and enrolling members of the military, veterans and their families, with questionable returns.

Posted via email from Academentia

Critical University Studies: Chris Newfield reports

Not the MLA but from across the Freeway: Notes on the Counter-conference... cheerfully cribbed from Chris' excellent and often recommended Remaking the University (utototherescue). This time heed the recommendation: bookmark the blog, add the feed to your rss reader, follow Chris on Twitter, @cnewf. Visiting and posting a comment would be nice too. Chris has another blog, Chris' Blog Archivesmore like a spare blog closet (I could use one of those too for all the notes and links stashed about). 


. . . actually more like tweets, organized around themes not presentations and slighting all sorts of good stuff from a full Merrifield amphitheatre (image above) at Loyola Law School:

Friday, January 7, 2011

Following #MLA11 and #AHA2011 from afar

Not there, LA or Boston? No problem. Subscribe to twitter feeds for #hashtag searches or a "daily" paper.li for the feed (or create one if none available). The main page of the MLA site is running a live feed. Many presenters and some panels are tagged. Every hashtag generates an RSS feed. As I type, presenters and attendees are diligently blogging and tweeting both MLA and AHA conventions. Tweets can and often do include links, some to blog posts. 

This model holds for just about every conference, regardless of acronym but depending on prevalent communication technology habits and saturation.



Thursday, January 6, 2011

Bob Samuels @ #mla11: "Capitalism or the Humanities"

Results for samuels #mla11

 New Faculty Majority 
RT @: if only phds teach undergrads > restructure  economic structure | eek! presumes superior teaching 
 Richard Grusin 
Samuels: if only people with phds were allowed to teach undergraduates we could help restructure economic structure of higher ed. 
 Richard Grusin 
Samuels: overspending on star faculty creates economic structure that duplicates income distribution in the us in the 21st century
 Richard Grusin 
Samuels: acceptance of moving classes online by humanities faculty makes us the enemy. 
 Richard Grusin 
nice to hear robert samuels actually address the economics of the humanities in "capitalism and the humanities" panel 
 Richard Grusin 
"Altrusitic people contribute to the destruction of the common good" says Robert Samuels new economic theory. 
 Richard Grusin 
 exploitation of grad instructors without phds undervalues undergrad education 
 Richard Grusin 
humanities now pushed to conform to capitalist practices:  
 Richard Grusin 
Robert Samuels changes title to "Capitalism or the Humanities"

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