Archive for April, 2011

Remembering the College Admissions Experience in Oz

Whenever I hear the song “Ding, Dong, the Witch is Dead,” I think of getting into college. This association isn’t nearly as strange as it might seem. During my senior year, I was the stage manager for my school’s production of The Wizard of Oz. The show ran at the end of the March, and between corralling the grade school students who were playing munchkins and dealing with the cute but stubborn ...

College Unplugged: The Merits (and Limitations) of Banning Computers in the College Classroom

Let’s face it – computers and devices with internet access present a considerable source of temptation for even the most self-disciplined person. Besides the myriad of games and videos, computers let us work, shop, and share our thoughts. This all seems well and good except when your undivided attention is expected in a given time and place. According to an article on Boston.com, several college ...

Choosing A College: What Really Matters

Our world is shrinking. Cell phones and Internet access in Sub-Saharan Africa have revolutionized that part of the world, expanding development opportunities and education. American corporations continue to open branches all over the globe. Outsourcing is no longer reserved for call centers; it’s increasingly common for professional functions from engineering to marketing. Such shifts make it very ...

Recommendations for Getting Recommendations

When I receive a request for a recommendation, the first thing I do is to think about the student who is asking for it. What are this student’s strengths? Can I give specific examples of how the student demonstrated these strengths? How did this student do in my class in terms of grades and effort? What might this student contribute to the school or program he or she is applying to? As you might ...

Going from TMI to A-OK: Does Sharing Personal Information in Social Media Make a Professor More Credible?

If there is one thing that I drill into my undergraduate students (who are also teachers in training), it's that they need to be careful of what they post online and how they interact with their students via social networks like Facebook and Twitter. Since the news seems filled with horror stories about how inappropriate content and interactions on the Internet can derail teacher-student relationships ...

The Do’s and Don’ts of Asking for Recommendations

Disclaimer: All of the events described here are real. The names and details have been changed to protect the innocent (and the not-so-innocent). DON’T Assume – Even if you are 99.9% positive that a teacher will give you a glowing recommendation, you should never give out references and contact information without asking the teacher first. Besides being common courtesy, this notification allows ...
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