Category: Academic life

Western Civ – Final Exam, Fall 1958

I surely hope that I am violating no standards of academic conduct by posting an old Western Civ exam…for all I know they’re still using the same questions. (Click on image for full-size clarity.)

Research – where you find it

My daughter wrote: “Based on my observations of many and conversations with handfuls, a large number of scientists are not naturally inclined to network.”  I’m trying to teach Marketing Research this fall (for the first time in probably 25 years), and I love the texture of this statement about observation and inference. (The classic statement

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What else do we need to know about ourselves?

I picked some fairly meaningless words to check up on (“quahog”), and then decided to try “self” and “others” to see if there was anything in the data. Bingo! For a description of what Google’s up to here, see The Chronicle of Higher Education.

eBooks and iPads and Blackberries, oh my!

At my present university the periodical magazine features a point-counterpoint discussion in each issue. This time the topic was whether the coming-of-age of eBooks would result in increased reading; to kill the suspense, I took the con side while a professor of performing arts took the pro side. We made our arguments (in writing) last

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David Letterman’s demographic problem

For many years I’ve taught a computer-based strategy simulation game, Markstrat, and I have required my students to prepare a presentation at the end of the course to demonstrate what they learned from the simulation. For many years I used a ponderous description of what I wanted from the presentation, suggesting all kinds of concepts

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Ah, priceless wisdom

An email from a student of mine: a******@*******.edu show details 10:35 AM (2 hours ago) Hi Professor! I have a question for one of my PR classes.. What is the importance of market share to a public relations campaign? Can you please explain this to me.  Thanks! A***** ********* Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

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My Approach to Pedagogy

In the fall of 2008 I applied for a tenure-track position at the university where I currently teach as a full-time visiting professor. As I observed to a friend, that would mean that I would be eligible for tenure when I reach 75…just when I’d really be able to enjoy it. Part of the application

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Email to my son

Your mother has me reading her book club book, Wallace Stegner’s Crossing to Safety, taking its name from a Robert Frost poem, not a Robert Frost poem that I know, nor one that I heard him read when he appeared at Stanford when I was an undergraduate.   Wallace Stegner was, when I was an

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Bloggies Upeast

I teach at a private university within 100 miles of Boston; last Thursday I took a quick survey of my students – juniors, business majors – to find out how the nominees for the Bloggies fared. The results: Best American weblog: Perez Hilton 18 PostSecret 5 Boing Boing 2 Lifehacker 1 Best photography of a

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