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Global warming and Smithsonian chilling May 21, 2007

Posted by @Doc in corruption, democracy, Education, Environment, George Bush, Global warming, Politics, religious extremists, Republicans, Research, science, Smithsonian Institution.
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To some extent, science has always been more shaped by political realities and pressures than we usually admit. After all, science is “objective,” done properly, and when we look at a scientific study we like to think we’re looking at the best approximation of fact and truth possible at the present moment.

Of course, this is hardly so. Say you get a government grant to study Alzheimer’s and do an absolutely textbook, brilliant, landmark study that moves the field ahead ten years. You’re published in a premier journal, win awards, get quoted left and right, lock up tenure, etc. Nothing biased at all about it.

Except that government funds are not infinite, and back when that grant was being reviewed somebody decided to fund research into Alzheimer’s instead of research into something else, like maybe AIDS or HPV or Parkinson’s or whatever. (more…)

Best of the Web May 16, 2007

Posted by @Doc in Blogger's Choice Awards, blogging, Education, education blogs, political blogs.
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My site was nominated for Best Education Blog!

We’ve been nominated for Best Education Blog as well as Best Political Blog. If you like what we’re doing, please click the image and cast a vote for us.

Thanks.

Media, markets and education May 11, 2007

Posted by @Doc in culture of learning, Education, educational reform, Libertarian, Scholars & Rogues.
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There’s a discussion in a comment thread over at Scholars & Rogues that may interest you, assuming you didn’t see it already. Gavin Chait is promoting the strength of global media (in particular talking about the health of newspapers) and I’m poking hard at a lot of the assumptions underlying the free market argument being made.

Predictably, it circles back around to education. Have a look.

May 7, 2007

Posted by @Doc in Uncategorized.
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In a Technopoly, no one can hear you think… May 7, 2007

Posted by Jim Booth in culture of learning, Education, educational reform, technology.
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XPOST: Scholars and Rogues

“Nobody’s right, if everybody’s wrong…”

Stephen Stills

The New York Times reported Friday that the Liverpool (NY) school district will begin phasing out student individual use laptop computers beginning next year. Citing problems such as students using their computers to cheat on tests, to surf porn sites, and to hack into local businesses as well as nightmarish problems with network security, laptop hardware/software problems and system crashes caused by large numbers of students surfing the Net when they were supposed to be studying, Liverpool, like an increasing number of school districts, has decided to give up on the grand experiment of having a computer for every child:

“After seven years, there was literally no evidence it had any impact on student achievement — none,” said Mark Lawson, the school board president here in Liverpool, one of the first districts in New York State to experiment with putting technology directly into students’ hands. “The teachers were telling us when there’s a one-to-one relationship between the student and the laptop, the box gets in the way. It’s a distraction to the educational process.”

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