Category Archives: Uncategorized

Just a great story about a teacher and a student

I guess this is the time of year when I am looking for a little inspiration. Writing exams is fun; grading them is not. This is when, as a former colleague once said, you want to call the Provost and … Continue reading

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Humor in Teaching

We’ve recently added a lot of seriousness to the offices of teaching, from the too-high cost of a degree to the desire to produce specific results (jobs, right?) that are not really promise-able in any environment. But humor is an … Continue reading

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Simple Classroom Cues to Help With Student Motivation

Within the SMU CTE, we have been discussing a number of issues relating to motivating the students that we all have the privilege to teach. Although many of us assume that the subject matter itself should be interesting to and … Continue reading

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Documenting Kindness

Here’s a happy thought for the start of a new semester:  academic life can be characterized by kindness rather than snarkiness.  Thanks to Mark Chancey‘s Facebook post, I read a recent article that highlights a project created by a professor … Continue reading

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Reading Fiction

There is a piece in the Dec. 9 Chronicle (“Why Fiction Does It Better”) that argues that fiction develops readers’ capacity for “sociocognitive complexity”: Cognitive scientists and literary theorists have plenty to say on this subject. Cognitive science connects the … Continue reading

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Going Text-less on Power Point

As a professor of Latin American literature and culture, the use of audio-visual material has been a very effective tool in my classes. So far, I have preferred a low-tech approach to teaching, occasionally playing a short scene from a … Continue reading

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“Something honorable to do with the rest of the day . . . “

From a blogpost over at The New York Review of Books: Seamus Heaney used to say that the poetry-writing hours of a poet’s day were the easy part; it was what to do with the rest of the day that … Continue reading

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Teaching Teachers Teaching Excellence

This week’s Science has a fascinating article about a White House education-policy advisor, Steve Robinson, who is leaving the heady world of the West Wing and returning to the classroom to teach high-school biology. (If my link doesn’t work, you can access … Continue reading

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Should pre-med requirements be reformed?

This is the title of Aaron Carroll’s April 11 blog post over at The Washington Monthly, which coincidentally appears at the same time as a Perspective piece by David Muller in the April 10 issue of The New England Journal of … Continue reading

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Faculty Play Dates

Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of learning and work occurring in Faculty Learning Communities. But, like preschool play groups, FLCs also provide a safe and structured environment focused on a shared interest, for learning, interaction, and enjoyment among … Continue reading

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