I used to think that cost inflation in higher education was driven by a lack of productivity improvements. Therefore, I thought, when people invented productivity-enhancing technologies that made undergraduate education cheaper, we’d be on the road to curbing cost inflation. Then I read this eye-opening article by Kevin Carey in The Washington Monthly. Kevin points out that we actually have seen a bunch of things like Aplia that are making aspects of undergrad education more efficient. They’re just not making it any cheaper for students and their parents
I just found this at Neurophilosophy. Apparently University of Pennsylvania is hosting a Neuroscience Bootcamp!
What happens at Neuroscience Boot Camp?
Through a combination of lectures, break-out groups, panel discussions and laboratory visits, participants will gain an understanding of the methods of neuroscience and key findings on the cognitive and social-emotional functions of the brain, lifespan development and disorders of brain function.
Each lecture will be followed by extensive Q&A. Break-out groups will allow participants to delve more deeply into topics of relevance to their fields. Laboratory visits will include a trip to an MRI scanner, an EEG/ERP lab, an animal neurophysiology lab, and a transcranial magnetic stimulation lab. Participants will also have access to an extensive online library of copyrighted materials selected for relevance to the Boot Camp, including classic and review articles and textbook chapters in cognitive and affective neuroscience and the applications of neuroscience to diverse fields.
Who should apply?
Graduate and professional students, working professionals and college and university faculty are encouraged to apply. The only prerequisites are a grasp of basic statistics and at least a dim recollection of high school biology and physics. (A short set of readings will be made available prior to the Boot Camp to remind you about the essentials.)
If I had any of that crazy green paper people keep in their pockets I’d probably be interested. Looks like a great opportunity for people who are in fields like business, law, etc that would benefit from a solid overview of what’s happening in the field of neuroscience. Very cool.
In the far distant future when I finish my Masters in Mathematics here at Portland State, I’m considering getting a second Masters in Economics. A particularly interesting program is the one at the University of Nottingham in Behavioral Economics.
Behavioral Economics consists of much of what I like most: Game theory, emperical research, an honest assesment of how people actually think, and is open to biological approaches to understanding why people do what they do.
Here’s a post by a guy who just finished up at Nottingham with an MSc in Applied Economics talking about his dissertation.
What’s more important, the prestige that comes with the name of your school, or the likelyhood that your school will get you a job?
The following results come from a study done by Benjamin Schmidt and Matthew Chingos that ranked Phd programs in Political Science based on how well placed their graduating Phd’s were into tenure track positions in Universities (it didn’t rank them based on positions into other fields like Government, think-tanks, liberal arts colleges, or community colleges, etc–but that would also be very interesting).
- California, Berkeley
- California, SD
- Washington University
- Michigan State
- Ohio State
- Florida State
- Johns Hopkins
- University of Washington
Of course, Harvard ends up on top, but there are some surprises. I didn’t expect some of them to be as high, and I certainly didn’t expect Yale and Princeton to “lag” so far behind.
I am WAY far off from any illusions of tenure. Getting through school first is a good goal. Truth be told, I’m not all that sure tenure is what I want. I like the idea of an adjunct teaching position, continuing as a part-time weightlifting coach and doing independent research. Life without the hammer, and lack of mobility, that comes with a tenured position (though I would sacrifice stability, but at least that’s familiar) sounds rather nice actually.
But, for those of you out there who blog and are in a position to worry about such things as your tenure-track opportunities, John Hawks is writing a 4-part serious on Blogging and Tenure.
Last month, the University of Wisconsin officially granted me tenure. So, I can say without any doubt (if other examples had not been sufficient), it is absolutely possible to write a daily, high-profile blog and still be recognized by your colleagues as a scholar. In fact, it is possible to blog, do good research, and earn tenure at a Research I university.