Reading Around the Web

The most important ingredient for academic success? The faculty.

“The difference between a good university and great university comes down to talent,” Mr. Salmi said. “The rest of what you need is just there to attract the talent and enable them to do their best work.”

In his summary of the study, Mr. Salmi alludes to the increasingly global competition for academic talent, spurred on partly by the growth of various international rankings, and resulting in what he describes as “a virtuous cycle, where the highest-ranked institutions can attract the best faculty and the best researchers, in turn, want to belong to and be validated by the highest-ranked universities. This cycle then extends to the best students wanting to study with the best faculty.”

This is the result of a study, presented at a conference on World Class Universities. It looks like, however, that the study was conducted in China. Would this make a difference to the results? Yes, I think it would.

Better Than Rhetoric is about video game rhetoric and how video games are better than rhetoric. The author uses literary analysis on rhetoric and games and says:

This semester, I’ll be asking my wonderful students to go further than the realists could in addressing that challenge; they will try to use the capacities of the videogame medium to go beyond argument into experiment. That’s the real promise of videogames, and perhaps what makes them better than rhetoric.

It’s an interesting idea and very eye-catching, especially for a rhetorician. But I am no where near able to offer this class, so I don’t know how relevant it was to my work.

Should you enter the blogosphere? isn’t relevant to me, per se, as I am already here. However, I was intrigued by the question and wondered what the author would decide and why.

Yet, for a growing number of academics the benefits of blogging outweigh the drawbacks. Those who blog – including me – agree there are positive outcomes, such as networking and collaborating, finding new audiences and opportunities, disseminating research more widely, and building one’s reputation. Bloggers argue that far from diluting scholarly success, online writing can be a serious tool for academic practice.

I like this list of advantages and the author goes on to elaborate on them in the post. Mostly though they boil down to reaching a wider audience.

Is that important? It can be.

Do schools see that as important? Not very many.

I like the idea particularly as “a serious tool for academic practice.” I’m not sure totally what that would encompass, but it gets me thinking in ways I had not before.

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