The Conversation

The 7 Deadly Sins of Coronavirus Thinking

The answer for the kind of panicked flurry in reasoning we’re seeing during the COVID-19 pandemic may lie in a field of critical thinking called vice epistemology. This theory argues our thinking habits and intellectual character traits cause poor reasoning.

16 hours ago
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Lessons From a Coronavirus Symptom-Tracking App (That’s Free)

“Rather than sending out thousands of online or paper questionnaires, we teamed up with health data science company ZOE to develop a simple symptom-monitoring app called COVIDradar. The app was made from scratch in about four days and would normally take four months. Volunteer citizen scientists use it to report their health status daily and note the appearance of any new symptoms. Once we realized that there was nothing similar available in the UK to monitor symptoms on a population-wide level, we decided to make the app freely available to all.”

4 days ago
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Why Call It ‘Social Distancing’? We Need Social Connection More Than Ever

Staying socially connected in times of threat has benefits beyond helping us manage our mental well-being. Other people can provide us with practical support, like picking up groceries or passing on relevant information, as well as emotional support. This feeling is called social solidarity, and if we get it right we’ll be much better equipped to respond to this and other crises.

7 days ago
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Breaking Bad News: How to Talk With the Misinformed

It’s also common to encounter people who are misinformed but don’t know it yet. It’s one thing to double-check your own information, but what’s the best way to talk to someone else about what they think is true – but which is not true?

2 weeks ago
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Twixt Duck and Rabbit: Psychological Biases and Bad Coronavirus Policy

Crises rarely see human decision-making operating at its best. Politicians and policymakers have to make important decisions in unfamiliar circumstances, with vast gaps in the available information, and all in the full glare of public scrutiny. The psychology of decision making doesn’t just tell us a lot about the potential pitfalls in our own thinking – it alerts us to ways in which some of the world’s governments may go astray.

2 weeks ago
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14 Tips for Improving Your Online Teaching

Hundreds of thousands of teachers are busy working to move their face-to-face lessons online. Designing online courses takes significant time and effort.
Right now, however, we need a simpler formula. Here are 14 quick tips to make online teaching better, from an expert in online learning.

3 weeks ago
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Instantly Shifting Classes Online Is Not Trivial

Carefully implemented, online learning can make university education more accessible, affordable, interactive and student-centered. However, the way that it is being presented as a simple and practical solution to coronavirus fears, capable of replacing face-to-face teaching for a significant period, is misleading.

3 weeks ago
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Academic Writing Needs More from Me, Myself and I

The move towards including the first person perspective is becoming more acceptable in academia, notes the University of Queensland’s Peter Ellerton, who adds, there are times when invoking the first person is more meaningful and even rigorous than not.

4 weeks ago
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Think You Love Your Valentine? Psychology Says Things May Be Complicated

Valentine cards are filled with expressions of unequivocal adoration and appreciation. That’s fitting for the holiday set aside to express love and reaffirm commitment to one’s romantic partner.

But what if there’s more going on below the surface of these adoring declarations? How might thoughts and feelings that people are not even aware of shape their romantic relationships?

2 months ago
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A Century Ago, Congress Dismissed a U.S. Census

Census 2020 is far from the first census to set off bitter political fights. One hundred years ago, results from Census 1920 initiated a decadelong struggle about how to allocate a state’s seats in Congress. The political arguments were so bitter that Congress eventually decided they would not use Census 1920 results.

2 months ago
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Guelph-eugenics-document

How One University Shared Its Oppressive Past

For the first time, a Canadian university — the University of Guelph — is reconciling with its history of teaching eugenics. Few universities in Canada have looked closely at their historical involvement in oppressive research, teaching and practice. Fewer still have made their archives accessible.

2 months ago
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