Blog posts and resources relating to teaching social sciences.

Professor McGonagall

Don’t Let A Snob Story Become a Sob Story

There are a number of species of snobbery that show up on campus and it’s useful to develop skills for counting or even reversing its malign influence. Step one: learn to laugh.

5 years ago
Humboldt University

How Germany Managed to Abolish University Tuition Fees

If Germany has done it, why can’t we? That’s the question being asked by many students around the world in countries that charge tuition fees to university. Barbara Kehm explains how Germany reached this point, and whether it’s likely to stay there.

5 years ago
Annals cover Sep14

The Perverse Results of Performance Funding for Universities

Given the rise of policies that try to link state appropriations for public universities to the student outcomes for those institutions, the natural question must be: do these funding policies correlate with higher student achievement? The answers may surprise …

5 years ago
Group of meerkats

Even in a MOOC, Students Want to Belong

Even in the austere and potentially lonely world of of the online course, students respond best when they feel they’re part of the family, new research finds.

5 years ago

Putting Quality Into Qualitative Research

The authors of an award-winning textbook on qualitative research discuss their love of the method — and their respect for choosing the right method for the task at hand.

5 years ago
Game board

How Do You (Successfully) Gamify a Course?

Some people say college is already a game — but a poorly designed one. Political scientist Mika LaVaque-Manty is bringing game logic into his introductory courses, a winning effort that was honored at this year’s APSA annual conference.

5 years ago
Slippery slope roadsign

The Slippery Slope: Dumbing Down into Secondary Schools

Although this piece first posted at The Conversation was not intended as a response to Daniel Nehring’s request for opinions about effect of ranking-mania on academic labor, Alister Scott’s observations on the current state of British higher education do shine a light on one facet of the larger issues involved.

5 years ago
War on Learning cover

Book Review: The War on Learning

In The War on Learning, Elizabeth Losh analyses recent trends in post-secondary education and the rhetoric around them. In an effort to identify educational technologies that might actually work, she looks at strategies such as MOOCs, gaming subject matter and remixing pedagogy, writes Susan Marie Martin.

5 years ago
Oliver Twist

Are Good Intentions Enough in Allocating School Places?

Unintended consequences and little practical improvement could result from England’s plan to give poor students priority in school placement, especially if schools can decide to opt in or out, argue Stephen Gorard and Rebecca Morris.

5 years ago