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Academics  // Browsing posts in Academics

25 May Posted by in Academics | 2 comments

Liberal Education

Liberal Education

Know what I haven’t heard much about this year? liberal educational values, that’s what. I don’t mean they’ve been abandoned, even by academic leaders whose main focus seems elsewhere. But they sure have dropped out of most of the headlines. And this could be a problem. I am entirely in favor of reevaluating our delivery […]

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21 May Posted by in Academics, Observations | 4 comments

Lyrics

Lyrics

I performed the following takeoff on Gilbert and Sullivan’s “Am I Alone” and “Anxious for to Shine” (from Patience) at the School of Music’s Young Masters Concert on May 4, and then as an encore at the celebration on May 12: Am I alone and unobserved? I am. Then let me confess, I am an […]

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20 Apr Posted by in Academics, Faculty, Students | 1 comment

Smelling the (Student) Roses

Smelling the (Student) Roses

A couple of events at the end of March, and the prospect of the usual frenzied end of semester, prompt these musings.  (I know end of March was a while back, but in this season I like to keep a backblog log.) The events were, first, a gathering of an international honors society and then […]

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Teaching Load

In consultation with the Deans and others, we have decided to clarify a few minimal standards concerning teaching loads. Three preliminaries, and then then rest of the blog simply sets forth the policy. First, as noted below, different units have different specific policies, and it would be counterproductive to pretend to unify them too closely. […]

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Mason Korea

Mason Korea

I had the great pleasure of participating earlier this week in the official opening of Mason Korea, in Incheon. I have written about the project before, but it’s terrific to see it become reality – hence a special, off-cycle blog. The operation is part of the Songdo Global University campus. It sits in a truly […]

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09 Mar Posted by in Academics, Students | Comments

Honors College in an Accessible University

Honors College in an Accessible University

Here’s an issue I admit I hadn’t thought of but should have; and it’s quite interesting. How should we consider an Honors College in a University that proudly proclaims its desire to be as accessible as possible to qualified students, to seek to include rather than exclude? Our Honors College, which predates our new Strategic […]

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02 Mar Posted by in Academics, Research | 3 comments

Public Intellectuals and “Significant” Research

Public Intellectuals and “Significant” Research

A recent (Feb. 15) New York Times op-ed on the increasing public irrelevance of much social science research, by Nicholas Kristof, has legitimately won wide attention. Kristof argues that academics themselves must bear much of the blame for the fact that so many really intelligent academic thinkers have little or no role in the crucial […]

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09 Feb Posted by in Academics | 4 comments

What Are Universities For?

What Are Universities For?

A couple of weeks ago I was asked to give a short talk on the subject of the purpose of universities, to a fairly general audience of people interested in George Mason but not for the most part academics (though some colleagues were there too). I won’t claim my thoughts were terribly profound or original, […]

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26 Jan Posted by in Academics | 3 comments

Innovation in Higher Ed

Innovation in Higher Ed

As many readers know, the tone of innovation discussions in higher education seems to be changing a bit, compared to last year. Whereas the most vigorous voices a year ago were talking boldly of disruption and defending radical departures like MOOCs, today the bloom has faded a bit. Intelligent discussions about realistic uses of MOOCs […]

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Transitions

Transitions

This will be my last semester as Provost.  At the end of June I will return to faculty (I’m not retiring at this point, just changing roles).  Presumably my successor will be selected by March, and I’m told that the search pool is very good.  So for me and in some ways for the University, […]

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