Next Thursday, October 7, is a National Day of Action to Defend Public Education. Find out more at the website, follow the organizers on Twitter, and connect with others on your campus to ensure access to quality higher education. As always, one of the best things you can do is to join the AAUP, which has information about a related week devoted to the idea that Higher Education Is a Public Good.
This week’s links:
- The new issue of Academic Commons focuses on educational uses for geospatial visualization tools. The case studies–all winners of NITLE’s Community Contribution award–range from biology to study abroad programs to community outreach: As spatial data become more ubiquitous, we are challenged to chart new terrain for academic inquiry and pedagogy. Liberal education is increasingly called on to help students develop the visual and quantitative literacies they need to work effectively with data, to discern patterns within and extract significance from them, and to understand and critique the myriad ways in which they are represented towards a variety of ends.
- The Tenured Radical offers advice about surviving the college tour with one’s children: I am told by a native informant that it looks “geeky” to be accompanied by two adults. Don’t ask questions, especially when encouraged to do so by representatives of the college! This is humiliating, not only to your college-bound teen, but to the rest of us who have been schooled by our young companions not to ask questions.
- If you were intrigued by Julie’s coverage of Zotero Everywhere, you might also want to take a look at Trever Owens’s explanation of why the new Omeka Zotero plugin is like Reese’s: In this capacity, Zotero becomes a drag-and-drop UI for adding items and files to an Omeka exhibit. Once everything is in you can simply import all the info into your Omeka exhibit.
- Ok, so you have a smartphone, and you’ve downloaded apps–now what? According to the Pew Internet report on “The Rise of Apps Culture,” maybe not much: Yet having apps and using apps are not synonymous. Of those who have apps on their phones, only about two-thirds of this group (68%) actually use that software. Overall, that means that 24% of U.S. adults are active apps users. Older adult cell phone users in particular do not use the apps that are on their phones, and one in ten adults with a cell phone (11%) are not even sure if their phone is equipped with apps.
- For those readers on the job market, or who might be one day, The Little Professor explains how to talk about classes you’ve never taught: My own experience as an interviewee, as well as an interviewer, was that it was a good idea to have a basic spiel prepared about each course–its objectives, the authors, and some specific texts.
- What happens when Wikipedia adopts social networking practices? The lack of criticality exhibited by Web 2.0 adepts never ceases to amaze: a quick glance at a Facebook news feed shows that content (such as links to articles) is liked within seconds of being posted, suggesting that the appreciative individual is judging it based on topic and not the ideas it comprises. This leads to the question of user abuse: will individuals arm themselves with the feedback tool to sabotage content?
A couple of weeks ago, I reviewed Clifford Nass’s new book, The Man Who Lied to His Laptop. In this week’s video, he explains (yet again) that multitasking is bad for your brain, and how you can refocus:
Bonus 2: Turn any webpage into Asteroids. Outstanding.
[Image provided by the Defend Public Education website.]