Recommended reads #43


In an intentional experiment in peer review, the organizers in a computer science conference discover that half of the papers accepted to the conference would have been rejected if the review process were rerun. (Note: in computer science, conference presentations are the meaningful currency of academic productivity, not journal pubs.)

The University of Alaska is suspending its chemistry degree, because it can’t find faculty to work there.

Two weeks ago, very few people clicked through on the really good Veritasium link to a short video about effective teaching. Maybe if I explain how great it is, more people will click through?

The two cultures of mathematics and biology. If you read this piece all the way through, then you’ll learn a lot about the deep and unfortunate division between biology and math as academic fields, and how much we are missing out on as a result of this divide.

Are black colleges boosting minority representation in the sciences?

9 major takeaways from a MOOC called “An introduction to evidence-based undergraduate STEM teaching.”

How does segregation happen and what are two possible routes to promoting integration? The Parable of the Polygons is an interactive simulation that answers this question, which I wager will be interesting informative, even for those who feel like they have a conceptual handle on these issues.

Here’s a strong-emotioned take on the pitfalls and inequity in the pass/fail system. It raises some important points about how pass/fail courses give an additional disadvantage to students who are already disadvantaged.

“Because you will always have low observed power when you report non-significant effects, you should never perform an observed or post-hoc power analysis, even if an editor requests it. Instead, you should explain how likely it was to observe a significant effect, given your sample, and given an expected or small effect size.”

This study of hype in press releases will change journalism.

In the New York Times, a story about how “colleges reinvent classes to keep more students in science.” It’s nice that news about not lecturing during lesson time in class is getting more press. (By the way, if you’ve exceeded your free reads in the NYT, you can just circumvent that by going into your browser’s private mode.)

Just as a reminder for prepping your syllabus and lessons for the upcoming semester, Meg Duffy maintains an annotated list of videos that are great for teaching, which just got a number of new additions. (And no, this is not a “curated” list, not that she called it one.)

Best wishes for a wonderful 2015. For links, thanks to Chemjobber, Richard Lenski, and Corrie Moreau.

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