Category Archives: students

making the most of a mentor.

I was asked by the folks over at  The Hidden Curriculum to answer a question prompted by my recent scatterplot post: (grad)student-faculty interaction.  Specifically, readers were curious about how to identify mentors and make the most of those relationships, as well as any advice that I had on bridging gender gaps in mentoring. The take-away is that it […]

just graduated, and fumbling through grad school.*

This NYTimes article, Just Graduated, and Fumbling Through a First Job, appeared in my newsfeed today, despite being published last week. My initial thought was that it would make a nice addition to the “Examples from Everyday Life” links for my Social Psychology class (impression management, socialization, age vs. cohort differences, etc.). But my DGS […]

(grad)student-faculty interaction

Notre Dame loves to make videos. They are currently working on a series about graduate students’ experiences on campus and I had a meeting with the production company today to discuss one of the videos, a segment focused on (grad)student-faculty interaction. As great as the meeting was, I left feeling incredibly discouraged about the state […]

becoming a master student.

I often tell my students that the course that changed my life was Introduction to Sociology. Today I realized that I’ve been lying to them, or to myself, all this time. The class that truly changed my life was Human Development 100.

the chronicle’s wasted opportunity

The Chronicle of Higher Education ran a reader contest recently, inviting readers to design their ideal college, from the ground up. The results are here (sorry for the paywall). This could have been a great opportunity to rethink what’s best and worst about current higher education. (In truth, I thought about suggesting a scatterplot combined […]

students helping students.

As academics we know that the way that a class goes, how much students get out of a class, and their evaluation of the course or the material depends heavily on the students themselves. How much effort do they put in? Are they prepared to learn? Do they contribute to discussions and take the material […]

majoring in football

Joe Nocera of the NYT wrote a column the other day endorsing the idea of allowing football players to “major in football.” The column begins at a lunch here at UNC. I was at that lunch, and Nocera’s claims are broader than what was actually said at the luncheon.

access to what?

As a result of the recession and the Republican takeover of the NC legislature, the UNC system has taken–and is expecting more–major cuts to its state appropriation. Unlike some other public flagships, notably Michigan and Virginia, UNC is very much a state school and we are very dependent on that state money to remain high […]

athletics and academics

As I have made clear in the past, I am a Tar Heel fan. I am also ambivalent about the relationship between big-time athletics and academics.

ask a scatterbrain: training grads in research ethics

One of the many wonderful sociologists I chatted with in Vegas was Iowa’s Mary Campbell, a loyal scatterplot reader. She asked me to pose a question to you (and I’m hoping in my post-Vegas/ASA/first-week-of-classes haze I remember its essence – if I don’t, I blame Andrew Perrin pushing appletinis at the bloggettogether): Apparently the University […]

perverse incentives in grading – exhibit a

A student forwarded me this email last week, which s/he received unsolicited from MyEdu, a company that specializes in helping students exploit grade inequality between departments and instructors: res ipsa loquitur.

of grade reform and deliberation

On Friday, UNC’s faculty council approved legislation that will put into place a series of reforms aimed at increased transparency in grade reporting. I chaired the implementation committee, charged with the details of how last year’s resolution (see discussion here) would be implemented, and I presented the legislation at faculty council on Friday. My first […]

teaching deviance by doing nothing

Below is a guest post from Nathan Palmer, creator of http://www.SociologySource.com a site focused on spreading ideas and resources for teaching sociology. Want to teach your students about norms, deviance, and the social construction of reality in a way that they’ll never forget? Try Doing Nothing, literally. Have your students silently stand in a public […]

who are our customers?

It is becoming more and more common to hear about the “customers” of higher education. I will go on record, unsurprisingly, as saying that I do not like this language. However, since it is becoming so common, I think it’s worth reflecting too on who these customers are, and also what the product is that […]

killing the messenger

UNC football is in the middle of a scandal involving improper contact with athletic agents and potential academic violations. It turns out that one of the main ways the scandal broke was that players were bragging via Twitter about perks paid for by agents, e.g, drinks, entry to fancy parties, and so on. So this […]

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