Education in the Digital Age: A Look at the Progression of Technology in Education with Norm Friesen

by eea | Wednesday, December 13, 2017 - 12:00 PM

I went to school at the dawn of the microcomputer. These were expensive, immobile boxes that only responded to coded commands. Today I hold a smartphone in my hand that is over 10,000 times more powerful and infinitely more flexible. This incredible technological revolution, however, is all but invisible when I now go back to schools as a Prof. in Educational Technology. Yes: There are teachers using interactive whiteboards, and students sneaking peeks at their phones or using a tablet. But I still see teachers covering material via lectures and students using textbooks—just as they do in my own university. I can’t help but ask: “Why has education changed so little when media and technology have changed so much?”

I wasn’t satisfied by the standard explanations: That we’re at the cusp of an educational revolution (we always are) or that educators are “laggards” (they work very hard). Instead, I looked at how questions of change and stability are understood by people without a stake in the game, who focus more on a well-documented past than on an uncertain future. I looked to historians, and in their accounts I found incredible stories about teaching and textbooks stretching back centuries that...Read More

Enrollment Realities Illustrate the Need for Relevant Research on Small Privates with John M. Braxton

by eea | Monday, December 11, 2017 - 2:44 PM

A title of a June 29, 2017 article in Business Insider declares “College Enrollment has plummeted, and private universities are scrambling.” This article points to activities at Ohio Wesleyan University such as creating majors in high-demand fields, increased student recruitment activities abroad and in the United States, and the addition of two sports and marching band as responses to declines in student enrollments. Jon Marcus, the author of this article states “All of these changes are a response to a crisis few outside higher education even know exists: a sharp decline in the number of customers bound for small private, nonprofit colleges (p.2).”

The enrollment pressures facing private colleges and universities create a great deal of uncertainty within this important sector of U.S. higher education. Uncertainty demands that scholarship guide the actions of leaders of independent colleges. Consequently, an urgent need for collaboration between scholars of higher education and practitioners in private colleges and universities springs forth. How are independent colleges adapting to these uncertainties and what additional research would help them not only survive, but also thrive? The Challenges of Independent Colleges: Moving Research into Practice edited by Christopher C. Morphew and I...Read More

The Dynamics of Imperialism and Foreign Relations: A Study of Persia's involvement in Foreign Wars with John Hyland

by eea | Friday, December 8, 2017 - 12:00 PM

The Satrap and I: Writing Persian Interventions

My fascination with Achaemenid Persia’s interventions in Greek conflicts began in a college seminar on the crisis of the Greek city state, when I first read Book VIII of Thucydides’ History of the Peloponnesian War . To my surprise, the character who intrigued me most was not a Greek but a Persian, the satrap Tissaphernes, who offered aid to Sparta’s fleet against Athens in 412-411 BCE but failed to deliver on his promises. While admitting lack of certainty on his motives, Thucydides guesses that Tissaphernes feared the winner of the Greek struggle would threaten the Persians; therefore, the historian alleges, he crafted a secret policy to sabotage his allies, balancing Sparta and Athens against one another and prolonging their destructive stalemate. Tissaphernes’ apparent employment of defensive Realpolitik seized my attention – I wrote a twenty-page paper but couldn’t stop thinking about the topic, and returned to it at greater length in my senior honors thesis. I found that numerous studies presented Tissaphernes as either a brilliant diplomat or cunning villain, but failed to place him in an adequate Persian imperial context; this forced me to begin grappling with...Read More

Writing through Heart Disease with Carolyn Thomas

by eea | Wednesday, December 6, 2017 - 12:00 PM

A Woman's Guide to Living with Heart Disease : my blog-turned-book!

By Carolyn Thomas

Part Two: Writing the Blog-Turned-Book

After two copies of my book contract were duly signed and returned to JHUP, I bought myself a new laptop to replace my ancient MacBook Pro in anticipation of starting this important project. I’d loved that old computer dearly despite its one perverse flaw: the “o” no longer worked on the keyboard. You would not believe how many words contain the letter “o”.

I knew that I’d need a visual outline of my 10-chapter draft Table of Contents to easily refer to for the year ahead. A big foam core poster fit the bill, propped up on my dining room table, covered with Post-its destined to be endlessly rearranged. It made for a unique decor accent.

Like many of my blog articles, each chapter of this book on living with heart disease was to start with a theme introduced by a brief personal narrative of my own heart attack experience. Each narrative was to be followed by a broader discussion of closely related themes,...Read More

A Night at the Museum Show

by bjs | Wednesday, December 6, 2017 - 9:00 AM

Earlier this year, Theatre Journal released a special issue on " Theatre and the Museum/Cultures of Display, " sparked by journal co-editor Jennifer Parker-Starbuck's personal fascination with the history of collection and display.

"This special issue, then, was initially sparked by a cross-section of my interests; indeed, my essay about taxidermy and performance (generously referenced here in Joshua Williams’s essay ) began when I became fixated on an exhibit of taxidermied dog heads circling around the head of a wolf in the Horniman Museum in South East London," she writes in her introduction to the issue.

Parker-Starbuck joined us in a Q&A to talk about the resulting five essays and how the topic makes a natural connection to the theatre performance.

How fun was it to work on an issue that developed from the intersection of your personal interests?

This Special Issue came about because not only was I brought up going to museums (from my mother’s love of art, to living outside of Washington, D.C. when I was young, where the free entry Smithsonian Museums provided hours of amusement) but also because my own research on...Read More