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Todd Suomela

The Scholar's Stage: How to Save the (Institutional) Humanities - 0 views

  • A few years after I graduated my alma mater decided to overhaul their generals program. After much contentious wrangling over what students should or should be forced to study, the faculty tasked with developing the general curriculum settled on an elegant compromise: there would be no generals. Except for a basic primer course in mathematics and writing, general credit requirements were jettisoned entirely. Instead, faculty made a list of all majors, minors, and certificates offered at the university, and placed each into one of three categories: science and mathematics, the humanities, and professional skills. From this point forward all students would be required to gain a separate qualification in each of the three categories.
Todd Suomela

The Scholar's Stage: Teaching the Humanities as Terribly as Possible - 0 views

  • Dive into the past and you will see this theme will emerge time and again: the purpose of studying history, philosophy, and poetry is to help us lead better lives and be better people. The humanities are an education for the soul. Placed next to these paeans to education, the aims of the "Theology of Dostoevsky" course are crippling. Reading Dostoevsky will help students will learn how to "contextualize literature within its anthropological milieu." Dostoevsky will teach them to see "the unique interpretive problems inherent in studying creative genres" and discussing his works will help them "communicate more effectively, verbally and in writing, about theological literature." That is the purpose of reading a man regularly called the best novelist in human history! We read him to "meet academics standards for writing and notation!" How painfully limited.
Todd Suomela

The Art of Unlearning - 0 views

  • I see two main views of learning. The first is like stamp collecting. The person wants to collect more and more knowledge, mostly for the purposes of showing it off to people they want to impress. The knowledge here is largely inert and unimportant for their lives—it’s just a collecting hobby accruing more facts and ideas. There’s nothing wrong with stamp collecting. Knowing facts and ideas, even if they aren’t particularly useful or central to our lives, isn’t a bad thing. It’s probably a superior hobby to many other pursuits, since knowledge can, at least some of the time, spillover to more practical consequences. The other view of learning, however, is centered around unlearning. This is the view that what we think we know about the world is a veneer of sense-making atop a much deeper strangeness. The things we think we know, we often don’t. The ideas, philosophies and truths that guide our lives may be convenient approximations, but often the more accurate picture is a lot stranger and more interesting.
  • A good meta-belief to this whole unlearning endeavor is to be comfortable with the idea that everything you know is provisional, and that underneath what you know is likely a more complex and stranger picture. Human beings seem to be naturally afraid of this groundless view of things. I’m not quite sure why that is. It may be that this kind of epistemic flexibility might start to question societal norms and rules of conduct, and so people who think too much about things may have an amoral character. That’s certainly the perspective of many traditional religious viewpoints on things, which discourages open-ended inquiry in favor of professing allegiance to dogma.
Todd Suomela

Of Caves and Conferences | Confessions of a Community College Dean - 0 views

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    For planning our upcoming jaunt to the DLF forum. What content should we focus on as a group?
Leslie Harris

Is It Time To Ban Computers From Classrooms? : 13.7: Cosmos And Culture : NPR - 0 views

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    A new paper delivers a clear verdict on computers in the classroom - but a variety of important questions remain open, like how they interfere with student learning, says psychologist Tania Lombrozo.
Deb Balducci

Three evolving thoughts about flipped learning - 0 views

How one faculty's approach to flipping has changed

flipped classroom higher education classroom learning flipped

started by Deb Balducci on 27 Jan 15 no follow-up yet
Leslie Harris

16 OER Sites Every Educator Should Know -- Campus Technology - 1 views

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    Most of the links are to online textbook sites, but there are also links to other OER repositories.
Leslie Harris

Flipped learning skepticism: Is flipped learning just self-teaching? - Casting Out Nine... - 0 views

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    Math professor responds to potential/actual student criticisms of flipped classroom model
Deb Balducci

Creating Learning Objectives, flipped classroom style - 0 views

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    Although this articles centers around a math course, teachers can use the framework for other fields of study.
Jennifer Parrott

Survey: Online learners are starting to resemble on-campus learners | Inside Higher Ed - 0 views

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    Information about who is taking online courses and why
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