Higher Education

#ProfChat: Male undergrads think that the smartest Biology student in the class is unlikely to be female

One of the reasons for the renewed interest in addressing systemic barriers to women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) is a plethora of recent social sciences peer-reviewed research into implicit or unconscious bias, stereotype threat, and the Dunning Kruger Effect. I think that Ben Schmidt has created the most compelling data visualization tool for illustrating […]

Why academics should regularly attend conferences where we don't present our work. Pt 1

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics), one always presents new research at every conference one attends. (Or at the very least, one must be a co-author on a talk or poster). Growing up as an ecological researcher, I've observed that there are two main reason for this ALWAYS […]

Prof. Marc Spooner's next course should be "Best practices in conference organizing"

I fell behind with my blogs at the end of June, when my back pain flared up. I'd probably gone a bit overboard with driving and sitting/standing, and I spent Canada Day flat on my back, groaning. I'm again doing well with moving around and having the energy to stand and work. so I'm dealing with my 2 missing July posts, by (1) updating the […]

The sky high Opportunity Cost of dealing with #HigherEd administration

The reason I am late by a week with this post, is that I spent a ton of time last week: 1. With inspiring high school students and great colleagues (at right). For the 2nd year, I judged the Toronto Envirothon at the Ontario Science Centre. 2. With inspiring university students: I edited the publishable research of my […]

Academic Citizenship: my authored output in 2015 so far, is 15 references

John Morgan (@JMorganTHE) and Chris Havergal's (@CHavergalTHE) wide-ranging article in the Times Higher Education magazine describes the stresses and strains on the clear glue that holds the global higher education ecosystem together. All of the invisible work that we do beyond our research and teaching can be loosely termed "administration", or community-building, or academic citizenship. […]

Keeping on the bright side: High & Low points of my 2014 #HigherEd year in numbers

An Academic New Year's Resolution list: For 2015, 101 Big And Small Ways To Make A Difference In Academia http://t.co/DCBuVYWyLo — Conditional Accept (@conditionaccept) January 7, 2015 In my experience, what I do remains a mystery to most people both within and outside of Higher Education. When they were young, my daughters told me that […]

Confronting Structural Sexism in #STEM: Pt 3

Given the sexual harassment of female students that I directly witnessed when I was a student doing field work, I've been infuriated by the Jian Ghomeshi debacle with its victim blaming. Although the sexual harassment that I personally witnessed happened 30 years ago, it, too, still makes me cross. So, Clancy et al's 2014 PLOS ONE paper on what appears […]