Category: Academics

In Which I Get Obsessed With MOOC

So here’s what I do, sometimes, while I’m working:  I have Coursera on in the background.  Well, and sometimes I just sit and listen to it. If you haven’t run across Coursera yet, it’s one of the online sites that

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Chaucer’s Latest Poem: Herein We See the Difference Between Adaptation and Parody, In Case You Get Confused

Nice to know that Geoff is still working!  We hadn’t heard from him since May, but last week, I see, on checking his blog, he posted his latest poem, which, in true Chaucerian fashion, is an reworking of a reworking

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Aventure and Falling in Love

  In my online Taking the Aventure classes, we start off with “Remembering Your Aventures,” and there’s a guided meditation (which you can get for free if you sign up for my newsletter!), meant to help the listener remember some

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Deep Work

Cal Newport has recently posted a technique for setting up what he calls “deep work” sessions, a technique that seems very useful indeed.  His picture of how he uses the technique isn’t very illuminating, though, at least to me; here’s

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Down Time and Deep Projects

It’s finals week in the university where I teach.  All time changes.  The papers that we knew were coming, all semester, get written, and get read.  The finals which we knew were coming, all semester, get taken, and get graded. 

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Passion for the Work

As I have said before, I admire Cal Newport’s Study Hacks blog very much; even when I don’t agree with his conclusions, I find his ideas useful.  He is good to think on if a man would express himself neatly.*

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Surviving (and Thriving) in the Academic Shame Culture

Recently I used the phrase “academic shame culture,” and a colleague, who’d recently been openly shamed at a faculty meeting and was therefore pretty interested, wanted to know where I had heard it.  I have no idea.  It seemed just

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On Writing Every Day

I admire greatly Cal Newport’s blog Study Hacks; he’s interested in examining myths about studying, and entrepreneurship, and achievement, stacking the myths up against data, and thinking about what really works and what doesn’t.  And he’s usually got extremely good

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My Best PhD Exam Advice

For those of you getting ready to take such things as PhD exams (and you know who you are; I’ve got one of you in mind specially), my advice: (Now, this is not about the studying.  Let’s assume that you

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