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Make a More Inclusive Syllabus with Tulane’s Accessible Syllabus Project

small packages of useful things

Ok, I know it’s still June and so probably a little too early to be thinking about your fall syllabus. But if the alternative is thinking about #Brexit–or, worse, reflecting that “what is the EU?” is a top Google search *in* *England* today–maybe it’s not such a bad thing? I’m teaching a class this fall for the first time in a couple of years, and so I’ve been stealing a few minutes here and there to think about it.

Via Gerry Canavan, a syllabus-design resource that’s new to me is Tulane’s Acce…

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Preparing for the Press: How to Talk to Reporters

LEGO female scientist

Academics and journalists often have an uneasy relationship. Academics love nuance and writing for experts; journalists tend to value a clear, comprehensible story. And while most academics would be thrilled if more people heard about their work, nobody wants to be at the heart of a political controversy–especially when untenured. (And it’s not just faculty who are unhappy about the press–when I was on the AAUP’s Collective Bargaining Congress, one of the things we learned is that the threat of…

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Open Thread Wednesday: Digital Life After Death

Stairs to Heaven

Although this is a post about digital death, it is not meant to be morose or anything. I just occasionally think of this problem, and while discussing it privately with Jim Groom (co-founder of Reclaim Hosting) recently, I thought it might be worth asking other academics what they are thinking of doing about this. My two questions are:

  1. What happens to a person’s website on their own domain when they die? (currently – it basically dies)

  2. What happens to a person’s digital purchases (Kindle, A…

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Review: The Videographic Essay – Criticism in Sound & Image

Film

I have long been interested in assigning alternatives to the standard essay, and so I read Janine Utell’s recent guest-post here on teaching with video essays with great interest. I’ve long admired what Ryan has accomplished with his unessay assignment, and even tried to do my own kind of assignment using the great resource Writer/Designer: A Guide to Making Multimodal Projects. I have yet to be successful in assigning a great not-essay assignment in a traditional literature or writing course, …

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#PulseOrlandoSyllabus: a Crowdsourced Teaching Resource

As a professor at the University of Central Florida, I was glued to Twitter on Sunday following the tragic aftermath of the Orlando shooting during Latinx night at popular gay / GLBTQ nightclub Pulse. Several students and graduates from colleges around the area are on the list of dead, and local campuses (including mine) have been hosting blood drives and vigils in the wake. It’s always difficult to know what to do after this type of event in classes: I pushed back the deadline for assignments …

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New WordPress Plugin for Hypothes.is

Back in January, Maha wrote about her use of Hypothes.is, a collaborative web annotation tool that works within your web browser. As Maha explains, this tool gives readers who are all assigned the same readings a choice: they can “do these readings in isolation, or they can read them in asynchronous collaboration with others who had read and annotated them beforehand; they can learn from what others have been saying about those reading.” Hypothes.is has a great many potential uses for education…

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Review: Revisiting Smartwatches with the Garmin Forerunner 235

When Pebble Kickstarted back in 2012, I couldn’t resist jumping in to see what this idea of a screen on my wrist might lead to. While I was enthusiastic about the concept and possibilities when I first reviewed it, I ultimately ended up abandoning it for a number of reasons, with poor ergonomics (it looked and felt ridiculous on my tiny wrist) and a painfully low battery life top of the list. Now, there are a lot of players in the smartwatch game, including Apple and Samsung, and I’ve been lu…

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Choosing Professional Development Events – And My Pick for This Summer

people sitting around a table talking with laptopsI don’t know about you, but most people I know have limited funds and time to spare for onsite professional development events. Many of us have these choices made for us by our managers or by the limitations of our funding or travel ability (see my post about my one day in Rome!). At one point in my life, I only went to conferences near Sheffield UK in the summer because that was when I went to England to meet my supervisor. More recently, I only go to conferences in nearby countries where I can…

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Letting Your Calendar Breathe

flower

A common frustration in academic life is being so fully-stocked with meetings that there is no time or energy to . . . actually do work. Or, to just idly contemplate things, which is often such an important precursor to work.

In a post that surveys a variety of “time management essentials for researchers,” Eva Lantsoght offers a some advice for just this problem:

Concept: Don’t plan more than 75% of your time

Whenever you make a planning, allow for some air in your planning. You need to move f…

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How Are You Having Fun This Summer?

Fun

Five years ago, George asked the question: What fun things have you done this summer?

No one has asked it since.

It isn’t terrible surprising that here at ProfHacker we’ve written way more frequently on “productivity” than we have on “play” or “fun“. But the two are linked in a lot of important ways. To wit: