Critical Diversity in a Digital Age

Last year we developed a strategic plan in the College of Arts & Letters that called for a cluster hire in culturally engaged digital humanities that focuses on humanities questions of race, inclusion, cultural preservation, global interconnectedness, and engaged scholarship. This fall, we sent out a call for proposals to the chairs and program directors inviting them to envision a …

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Lessons from New Hampshire’s PACE

As a previous post discussed, the Innovative Assessment and Accountability Demonstration Authority was inspired by New Hampshire’s Performance Assessment of Competency Education (PACE) pilot. As states consider applying for the authority to develop their own assessment pilots, attention has turned to PACE and what lessons can be gleaned from New Hampshire’s experience. What is PACE? …

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Christmastime

As a slow warm-up to getting this blog up to speed this fall, here’s a short video to test the absurdity of the climate we find ourselves living in. Chancellor Merkel’s utterances at this party meeting – which seem to be a clear indication that the CDU is feeling itself pushed to the right – …

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Independent Streams (Week of October 24)

Our weekly roundup of policy-relevant reads and IPPSR-connected research Problems Getting Names Right: It’s Personal (link is external) IPPSR affiliated faculty member Dustin Carnahan is quoted about a new book written by Michigan State University students. The Most and Least Empathetic Countries in the World (link is external) IPPSR Affiliate William Chopik discusses his new …

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Eating Figs from the Deroga Tree

Coming to you from Central Michigan, the latest flash news from the food movement. This week in an unprecedented turn of events a contingent of seventeen celebrity chefs led by Ettore Boiardi picketed the Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia where Senator Elizabeth Warren and former Cream drummer Ginger Baker were conducting a taste-test of four …

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Final Commentary on TNToT: “Repeating the Mistakes of the Past in “The New Trail of Tears””

The final commentary on TNToT was published in the LA Review of Books. An excerpt: Riley’s real interest is to bring unfettered free markets and “property rights” to Indian country. She suggests the disestablishment of tribal land holdings as the solution to imaginary corruption, as well as to all the other problems in Indian country. …

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What’s in a Phrase: Will the “Free and Appropriate Public Education” Standard Mean as Much When the U.S. Supreme Court Interprets It?

One Little Case and One Big Law Drew was diagnosed with autism at age two, ADHD at three. He accepted special education services from the Douglas County, Colorado schools beginning in preschool.  After an especially difficult fourth grade, Drew’s parents rejected the individualized education program (IEP) the District had proposed for the next year. They …

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Low Earth Orbit from your backyard? (startup Vector Space Systems)

It’s great to see innovation and competition in space launch technology. These small launchers from startup Vector Space Systems can put 50-100kg payloads (e.g., micro satellites) into Low Earth Orbit (LEO) for $2-3 million. There are obvious military applications for the rapid placement (or replacement) of satellites. For example, see A2AD Fait Accompli? Commercial applications are …

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Joe Rogan interviews Dan Bilzerian

This is one of the best interviews I’ve heard in a long time. Warning: NSFW. Joe Rogan interviews professional poker player and social media icon Dan Bilzerian. If you don’t know who he is, check him out on Instagram (guns, girls, private jets, high stakes poker = 20 million followers = NSFW). Among the topics covered: …

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New Teacher Preparation Regulations Announced, Implications for Michigan

Last week, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) announced new regulations that will require teacher preparation programs to be more transparent about their effectiveness across a number of measures. According to the ED, these regulations seek to improve outcomes for teacher preparation programs while still affording states the flexibility to determine specifically how performance is …

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Japanese Rain Goggles

So I was lunching with Usher last week at some chic little bistro in a trendy Toronto neighborhood. I don’t recall the name, and doesn’t matter much anyway. As a matter of fact, maybe it wasn’t even Toronto. Maybe it was Brooklyn or Burlington. I can’t fully recall. We had settled in and were sipping our …

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The AmaXhosa Maradona

Photo: http://www.stellenboschfootball.co.za   The story of Abongile Elton Qobisa, also known as the “Xhosa Maradona,” has not been covered by ESPN, SKY, SABC, or FIFA media. But Tarminder Kaur, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of the Free State in South Africa, is determined not to allow us to forget him. On October 26, the …

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Independent Streams (Week of October 17)

Our weekly roundup of policy-relevant reads and IPPSR-connected research. Problems Seven Results of the Charter-School Revolution (link is external) IPPSR Affiliate Sarah Reckhow finds shifts in educational philanthropic funding to conventional school districts in new research. Legacy Costs Tough for Michigan Local Governments: Part One – Introduction to Legacy Costs (link is external) IPPSR Affiliate …

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Mint Upgrade Problem Solved

I decided to upgrade first my laptop (the canary in the mine shaft), then my desktop (assuming the canary lived), from Linux Mint 17.3 (“Rebecca”) to 18.0 (“Sarah”). The “old school” approach would be to download the distribution to a CD/DVD, or create a bootable version on a USB stick, test it and then install …

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AI, Westworld, and Electric Sheep

AI, Westworld, and Electric Sheep I’m holding off on this in favor of a big binge watch. Certain AI-related themes have been treated again and again in movies ranging from Blade Runner to the recent Ex Machina (see also this episode of Black Mirror, with Jon Hamm). These artistic explorations help ordinary people think through …

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That Exceptionalism Thing

I just finished reading Noam Chomsky’s latest work, Who Rules the World this morning, As the craziness of this presidential election unfolds around us both the major party candidates share the dominant script of America the Exceptional. In fact, both not only wish to preserve and protect that image, but one would even expand it. …

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Let’s Make Botany Hip Again: Building Beal’s Botanical Laboratory, Part 1

The tragic fate of Michigan Agricultural College’s first Botanical Laboratory is the stuff of campus lore. Built in 1879, it burned to the ground in March of 1890 when a defective flue—and, legend has it, incompetent graduate students—contributed to a fire in the building’s attic. The Campus Archaeology Program has conducted several brief investigations of …

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DNS on Home WiFi

DNS on Home WiFi Like a lot of people, I have a home WiFi network, and I recently changed my Internet service provider. That required replacing my cable modem. Both the old and new modems provided a DHCP service that doled out local IP addresses to devices connecting to the home WiFi network. Both modems …

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Opportunities and Limits of the ESSA’s Innovative Assessment and Accountability Demonstration Authority

Opportunities and Limits of the ESSA’s Innovative Assessment and Accountability Demonstration Authority | Green And Write – Education Policy Research Insights The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) offers new opportunities for states to customize, innovate, and improve their assessment and accountability systems. One such option is the Innovative Assessment and Accountability Demonstration Authority, which gives …

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