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Whither Research?

This is the first of two posts engaging the question of the future of research and teaching in higher education. Part One: Challenges The University of Oregon prides itself as a research institution and takes seriously its role as the “flagship” institution of higher education in Oregon. As President Lariviere states in his welcome message at […]

Professor of the Year: Great Teaching is Within Reach

Last week the U.S. Professors of the Year Awards Program announced the four recipients of its annual award, one in each of the following categories: baccalaureate colleges, community colleges, doctoral and research universities, and master’s universities and colleges. In addition to the four national winners, an outstanding instructor is recognized for each state, plus the […]

The President Pledge

On November 5, 2010, the Chronicle of Higher Education and Inside Higher Ed reported that 71 college presidents across the United States have joined the Presidents’ Alliance for Excellence in Student Learning and Accountability.  “They have promised to take specific steps to gather more evidence about student learning, to use that evidence to improve instruction, […]

Thinking Beyond the ‘Two Cultures’

At a recent conference on student learning outcomes and assessment, I sat at a table with some professors of natural science who were lamenting the lack of appreciation for scientific knowledge in higher education and society at large.  As an example, one observed that at a cocktail party consisting of scholars, no one would be […]

But I don’t have time for that!

time management

What do you say when students ask how they can be more successful in your courses?   Because they are new to your discipline, students may not yet have developed the academic tools that you identify with success in your field.  Below are some study strategies that help many students […]

Universal Design in College Instruction

At some point during one’s teaching experience an instructor has most likely come across a situation where a student needed a level of support not normally planned for within  the syllabus and curriculum development.  This student may have had a physical limitation such as needing wheelchair access to the classroom, or a student may have […]

The Birthday Clown on the Life Raft

Are we entertainers or educators? This post explores the increasing value of entertainment in our social discourse and how that might change our approach to teaching. Imagine this: In the aftermath of a terrible apocalyptic Cylon attack, the only people to survive are a ragtag band of college undergraduates. They’ve been given a “Life Raft” in […]

Bad teaching

Recently I was asked to list the top 10 things I’ve learned about teaching during my career. So I have been trying to create my list. This comment came to mind immediately. “Bad teaching is answering questions that nobody asked.” Dr. Franklin Nelick, a professor I had for several English Literature courses during my freshman year […]

Information Behaving Badly

My high school chemistry teacher had a sign by the door that read—Today, light is a … with an arrow pointing to a wheel that rotated between light and particle. The sign was there to remind us that how we understood light and it’s effects was dependent on the situation. I feel sometimes like those […]