Links for 2012-09-19

In which we look at the death of a sports-media pioneer, the settling of the Chicago teachers strike, writing while a parent, why even highly educated people hate school teachers, and a different approach to teaching students not to plagiarize papers.

  • A Positive Solution for Plagiarism - Do Your Job Better - The Chronicle of Higher Education

    The first writing assignment I give students in my writing courses involves plagiarism as a topic. I ask them to investigate and read resources on the Web assembled by experts on the subject such as Nick Carbone, a new-media consultant for Bedford/St. Martin's, and Bruce Leland, a professor emeritus at Western Illinois University. I ask students to take notes on the readings, especially on how both authors are unhappy with standard approaches to preventing plagiarism and academic dishonesty.[...] Then I ask students to find a Web site that offers free essays for download. I provide a central source, such as "Cheating 101: Internet Paper Mills," available at, though there are many others. Each student has to download one paper (or as much of one as is permitted by the site) and analyze its strengths and weaknesses.

  • Do Liberals and Elites Hate Teachers? | Easily Distracted

    Like Corey Robin, I went to public schools in upper middle-class communities, had great relationships with most of my teachers, felt enormous affection for the education I received, and so on. On the other hand, I don’t have good feelings about the totality of “school”, particularly before high school, because (like more than a few academics) I also recall being bullied with great frequency, in no small measure because I did like school and education and a vocal and aggressive subset of other students did not. So something is going on even while we’re being schooled that draws from both parents and the wider culture, but I also think has its own dynamic among students. Teachers, mostly unfairly, often become a holder for all of that wider, more diffuse antagonism towards the experience of education.

  • Benedictus: Thoughts on Being a Writer and Having Children « Lev Grossman

    [T]he business of making new people is actually really important too, because otherwise where would new people come from? I mean, there’s always more people, but what about new people who care about the same stuff I do? I think of children sort of like Voyager probes, except instead of sending them out into space you send them forward in time. They carry messages from your civilization inside them, on into the weirdness of the future. They keep going and going long after you’re gone.

  • Hurting the Kids « Corey Robin

    Though the final contract has not yet been hammered out, here are just some of the things the Chicago Teachers Union have won with their seven-day strike [pdf]: Almost 600 new art, music, and gym teachers Guaranteed textbooks in the first day of class $1.5 million for new special education teachers $.5 million for reductions in class size More than twice as much money for classroom supplies No question: they’re hurting the kids.

  • Steve Sabol Obituary - Grantland

    I never met Steve Sabol, but I wish I could have worked for him. His father, Ed, founded NFL Films, but Steve defined what it became: the finest cinematic reflection of a sport in absolute totality, consciously designed to amplify an intellectual viewing experience through emotional means. If that sounds unnecessarily complicated and verbose — fine. It’s still the truth. With the possible exception of Pete Rozelle, no other men influenced the way casual audiences think about football as deeply as Ed and Steve Sabol. And while it was the father who built the foundation, it was the son who erected the superstructure.


More like this

Steve Hsu has a nice post on teaching, following up on the Malcolm Gladwell piece that everyone is talking about. Steve took the time to track down the Brookings Institute report mentioned in the piece, and highlights two graphs: The top figure shows that certification has no impact on teaching…
A while ago, I listed what I thought made Massachusetts' educational system work: The recent educational regression reform plan in Massachusetts and the Obama Administration's educational proposals both seem to misunderstand what has made Massachusetts' educational system one of the best in the…
You can't get much more cynical than this article by a fellow who churns out term papers for incompetent students. He gives some examples of how awful their writing is, and talks about the formulaic approach he takes to writing everything from term papers to Ph.D. theses…and it's more than a little…
...too bad MA Governor Deval Patrick, and for that matter, President Obama, don't. The recent educational regression reform plan in Massachusetts and the Obama Administration's educational proposals both seem to misunderstand what has made Massachusetts' educational system one of the best in the…