Tag Archives: academic writing

Writing in the Sciences

“The more that you take care with your writing, the more you might explore uncertainties in your thinking,” suggests Stanford University Environmental Earth System Science Professor Julie Kennedy in this excellent Writing Matters video. Kennedy helpfully stresses the primacy of … Continue reading

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The ‘Fuzzy Logic’ Man

“He always took criticism as a compliment,” said Stuart Russell, a Berkeley professor who worked next door to Mr. Zadeh for many years. “It meant that people were considering what he had to say.”

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Elitism in the classroom

Professor Mayhew’s recent take on the topic: Teaching is transactional. The instructor is not feeding information to the students, teaching them that information, but interacting with them. A third element is the text in the class. The text is not … Continue reading

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Battle

In the New York Times obituary section recently I came upon one for Jacob Neusner, a scholar (and polemicist) who published more than 900 books in his lifetime. I calculated – on the back of a napkin, as it were – … Continue reading

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More on Clichés …

From professor Jonathan Mayhew: One of Orwell’s sillier pieces of writing advice is “Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.” Orwell advises “scrapping of every word or idiom which … Continue reading

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On Poetry

My friend Jonathan Mayhew has been on a tear of late, publishing a series of manifestos on poetry in his wonderful blog, Stupid Motivational Tricks. Some snippets (but read the whole thing): Manifesto (1) Nobody knows what poetry is for. … Continue reading

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Free textbooks and other resources for students and educators

Students who suffer under the burden of high tuition and large student loans need all the financial help the world can provide them. For my upper-level communications classes the last couple of years I have been using an excellent online … Continue reading

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Writing Matters

I had the honour of teaching students (as well as mentoring new instructors) in Stanford University’s Writing and Rhetoric program back in the day. Students from every corner of the university – from biology and engineering to sociology and English … Continue reading

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“More bad writing” …

… presented courtesy of our friend Jonathan Mayhew’s superb blog, Stupid Motivational Tricks: Scholarly Writing and How to Get It Done.” It is a lovely post that ends with this poignant sentence: “There are more objectionable sentences here that I … Continue reading

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Academic Blogging

My new favourite blog is by a Ukrainian-born scholar of Hispanic Literature named “Clarissa” – she doesn’t reveal her surname or some other would-be identifying information, like her university’s name – whose work I first encountered on Jonathan Mayhew’s Stupid … Continue reading

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