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Academics  // Browsing posts in Academics

Big Mason or Bigger Mason

Big Mason or Bigger Mason

As a University, we’re about to turn from the process of crafting a new strategic vision, to an actual planning process based on that vision. One of the most interesting planning targets has to be size of student body. The President’s Vision statement clearly implies growth, but there are no specifics attached. It’s time to […]

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17 Feb Posted by in Academics, Faculty | 2 comments

Law Schools in Crisis

Law Schools in Crisis

It’s probably fairly widely known, and not just in law schools, that most law schools have been facing, now for several years, a serious decline in applications. The result is particularly important for the schools themselves, but the results impinge on the wider academic enterprise as well. Again, the crisis is widespread, and I’m not […]

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03 Feb Posted by in Academics | Comments

Humanities and the Global Option

Humanities and the Global Option

I promise not to worry about the humanities in every blog, but another angle is worth exploring. I had occasion recently to talk about “global humanities” at a promising new Institute of that name at Montgomery College, which stimulated some further thinking. Mason, under Dean Jack Censer, has turned a good bit of its humanistic […]

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02 Jan Posted by in Academics, Faculty, Students | Comments

Mason Students

Mason Students

Writing the first blog of the new year is a bit of a challenge. Obviously one wants to make it interesting. On the other hand, we emerge from a week where — professionally — not a lot has been happening (for which we are profoundly grateful). So let me talk a bit about aspects of […]

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16 Dec Posted by in Academics, Faculty, Students | 1 comment

NSSE: How Our Students Are Doing

NSSE: How Our Students Are Doing

We’ve received National Survey of Student Engagement data for Mason for 2012, and while further reports will be issued by beginning of spring semester, from our peerless Office of Institutional Assessment, some preliminary results are worth attention. NSSE is a national survey that asks students to reflect on learning activities that relate to student success. […]

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25 Nov Posted by in Academics, Observations | 1 comment

Rankings

Rankings

The recent news that yet another institution has provided inaccurate data for the US News and World Report survey—however inadvertently—is yet another reminder of the importance of not taking any of the surveys too literally. Several cases of inaccurate submissions, both for the main US News ranking and for the law school version, suggest how […]

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18 Nov Posted by in Academics, Students | 1 comment

University Life

University Life

Recently, the President decided to shift the reporting status of University Life to the Provost. The move did not reflect a sense of huge problems to be solved. Rather it reflected a desire to improve further what is already a fairly constructive coordination of academic and co-curricular efforts in dealing with students. For my part […]

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06 Nov Posted by in Academics, Faculty, Students | Comments

Mason’s Forum on Higher Education

Mason’s Forum on Higher Education

The Forum has come and gone. This is not a formal or detailed review (though it will be a bit longer than my usual blog). The presentations and conversations were lively – it was even better than I’d expected in that regard. Attendance was terrific, over two days overlapping into weekend, which was in itself […]

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Ethics and Academic Leadership

Ethics and Academic Leadership

How’s that for an unusually pompous title? Actually, until a few years ago I would have hesitated to venture anything formal on ethics. I’m obviously not a professional ethicist—that remains the case—and I also have some hesitations about seeming to be preachy.  But after some years as Provost, I do have some firmer views about […]

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28 Oct Posted by in Academics, Faculty, Students | Comments

Mason’s Higher Education Forum

Mason’s Higher Education Forum

On November 2-3, Mason will host a mix of outside and internal presenters on key topics concerning the future of higher education. The audience will be largely Mason faculty, staff, students and friends, but we’ll have some visitors here as well. The purpose is at once to further conversations about vital higher education issues in […]

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