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I Read This Book and You Can If You Want To: “These Kids: Identity, Agency, and Social Justice at a Last Chance High School” by Kysa Nygreen

By Bill Tierney

I approached this 217-page book with a fair amount of hope but finished it disappointed. Any book, especially an academic text, can be a disappointment and yet the text can be a learning experience. If I were to suggest that someone read this book I would probably recommend it for its flaws rather than its […]

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On Community

By Bill Tierney

A month ago I wrote about how mentoring is a two-way street and how much I have gained from those who I have tried to mentor. It got me to thinking about community and our relationship to others. Over the course of my life there have been moments that I have engaged in activities that […]

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I AM Mentoring Program Update

By Lisa Garcia

It’s November again and the college application season is in full swing. We (Carlos Galan, Michelle Cadena, and 50 volunteer mentors) have been helping 175 high school seniors apply to college. For California public universities (the University of California [UC] and the California State University [CSU]), the applications are due on Sunday, November 30. This […]

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I Read This Book and You Have To: It’s Complicated

By Bill Tierney

It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens by danah boyd is a fun, thoughtful, essential book to read for anyone who is trying to make sense of how teenagers make use of social media. Her narrative voice is great; from page 1 until the end of the book 213 pages later, the reader has […]

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Paying for College

By Bill Tierney

Over the last several years we have rightfully been obsessing about student debt. Many students are taking on too much debt. The cost of college can also be a turnoff for poor students who understand debt but don’t necessarily understand foregone earnings. Why go to school for four years, incur debt, and end up with […]

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What Makes an Excellent Dissertation?

By Robert Rueda

What is an excellent dissertation? It is not, as many students initially think, a document to revolutionize education. It is a culminating product that allows one to demonstrate his or her ability to address a significant problem, synthesize information around that problem, develop arguments and a rationale for a study or project in a clear […]

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Quality Grading

By Corinne Hyde

When grading, it can be tempting to give a check mark or a letter grade and call it a day; but grading student papers can be a conversation between master and apprentice. The body of research on effective feedback indicates that feedback should be timely, specific, and detailed; the research also shows that the majority […]

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Quality Instruction

By Kimberly Ferrario

When considering quality instruction, I often think about the age-old question “which came first, the chicken or the egg?” Does quality instruction emerge through finely crafted standards and top-of the-line curriculum and text materials or does quality instruction come from a quality professor? After pondering this for about 20 years, as a public school teacher […]

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The Elephant in the Hallway: Promises for Peer Review of Teaching in Higher Education

By Jenifer Crawford

I believe that I am a “good teacher.” On most days when I teach I am fully present, minutes never pass slowly, and I am dancing in concert with ideas, actions, and my students. My professional identity is strongly tied to my belief that I am a good teacher, but the evidence I have to […]

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Quality Conversations in Academe

By Melora Sundt

The blog topics this week begin a conversation about what we mean when we talk about “quality” as faculty in the higher education environment. I have asked four colleagues to each take a particular topic and start us off. Tomorrow, Jen Crawford writes about quality peer feedback on faculty teaching. On Wednesday, Kim Ferrario writes […]

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