March 22, 2013, 11:00 am
I don’t know how to break this to you gently, dear reader: academia is not a gingerbread house on candy cane lane with unicorns parked in the driveway. Sometimes, when conflicts arise between colleagues, things get said (or written) that should probably be left unexpressed. Or to put it another way, concerns and objections are not always communicated in the most appropriate way.
I think we’ve all been there, to some extent, either as the aggrieved party sending an ill-advised email — for example — or as the party on the receiving end of said email. Billie has published a number of thoughtful posts about disruptive situations in the workplace and has invited readers to share their own thoughts and advice about such situations.
Recently, I was reminded of a story that a friend of mine told me about how she responded to a completely inappropriate message sent to her (and cc:’ed to…
March 15, 2013, 3:00 pm
It’s such an ugly word: MOOC. It’s an acronym for “massive open online course,” something you probably already know if you’ve been paying attention to the latest news about higher education. MOOCs have been all over the news in the last few weeks, in part because the 2013 meeting of SxSWedu took place last week, where these new course delivery platforms were talked up a great deal. The Chronicle has even put together an online resource titled “What You Need to Know About MOOCs.”
Now, The Chronicle sent me to SxSWedu this year, and I’ll have some posts about the experience next week, but I can report for now that one of the big stories is data. Big data. About students and every last detail of their performance in schools. Former Microsoft head Bill Gates gave the closing keynote, in which he argued for the importance of gathering more data and making it easier to share across various …
March 14, 2013, 8:00 am
If you were on Twitter yesterday, you would have noticed that in addition to many people commenting on the new pope, there was great outrage over Google deciding to shut down its Google Reader service, which is a very handy one-stop-shop for keeping up with all of your RSS feeds.
(Not sure why you would want to do this? Check out Jason’s introduction to RSS, Amy’s explanation of how she uses Google Reader, and Julie’s discussion of RSS readers.)
Google’s explanation for their decision is pretty straightforward: “There are two simple reasons for this: usage of Google Reader has declined, and as a company we’re pouring all of our energy into fewer products. We think that kind of focus will make for a better user experience.”
That being said, people are not happy.
March 6, 2013, 11:00 am
Many of us are now approaching the halfway point of the semester, which means it might be a good time to revisit a topics we’ve covered a number of times here at ProfHacker: mid-semester course evaluations.
Most recently, Meg Worley shared her advice about how to get the most out of such evaluations. (You might also want to read Amy’s tips on mid-semester sanity maintenance, while you’re at it.)
I’ve used mid-semester course evaluations successfully in several of my classes over the years. With today’s open thread, though, we’d like to hear from you.
What has your experience been with these kinds of evaluations? Are you conducting them this semester? What advice do you have for others who might be considering mid-semester course evaluations? Please share in the comments.
[Creative Commons-licensed flickr photo by Fabio Penna]
March 4, 2013, 8:00 am
Launched in September of 2010, Digital Humanities Questions & Answers is a joint venture of the Association for Computers and the Humanities (ACH) and ProfHacker. (See Julie Meloni’s launch announcement.)
Digital Humanities Questions and Answers (@DHAnswers on Twitter) is designed to be a free resource where anyone with an interest in the digital humanities can pose a question to the community of folks working in the field.
Since we last checked in with the site, many interesting threads have been launched and several “best answers” have been provided. Below, I’ve provided links to a few of the threads with best answers:
March 1, 2013, 11:00 am
On Monday, I showed you how to host a website on Google Drive, which is a free and easy hosting solution. What if you want to edit the content you’ve uploaded to your website? Well, in a helpful comment, ProfHacker reader Chris Clark points us to a Google Drive app called Drive Notepad, which turns out to be a pretty darned impressive text editor: “View and edit all kinds of text documents in your browser. Includes syntax highlighting for many scripting and programming languages.”
This app is not affiliated with Google, but is the creation of a developer listed as “DM” on the app’s page. To use Drive Notepad, you need to first get the browser Google Chrome (if you’re not already using it) and then go to this page in the Chrome Web Store, where you can install the app. (For help with installing, managing, and uninstalling Google Drive apps, check out this help page.)
I’ve only just …
February 27, 2013, 11:00 am
Much of the material we generate for teaching is digital, perhaps most obviously lecture notes and presentation slides. Some instructors put this material online as part of the course materials available to students.
For most of us, I think, this kind of material is not consciously designed to be used by students in this way, but that doesn’t mean that it would be impossible to do so.
One of our readers recently suggested that we cover this topic: Do you share your teaching materials online with your students? Why or why not? If you do, what do you do to make sure the material is both useful to you as the one teaching the class and useful to your students as the ones taking the class? Any stories of success (or failure) out there? Please share in the comments section!
[Creative Commons-licensed flickr photo by Denise Chan]
February 25, 2013, 8:00 am
February 18, 2013, 8:00 am