Change is afoot!

Again it has been awhile since I have posted here. It’s been a busy term, I’ve been teaching a lot of classes, writing and researching. In the not too distant future this blog is going to shift a bit in topic to reflect more of my research and writing as well as my teaching.  I wanted to have a more integrated approach, and show people more of what my version of the “academic mercenary” life is about. So, watch this space.

In the meantime, here is a question that surely vexes many teachers and professors today: how do we cope with the rising tide of bad and incorrect information about American and world history that is carrying away our students?  Many of them are genuinely misinformed about the way the country operates and what the history of the country is.  I don’t even know how to start correcting this, it’s like a wave.  I am trying to keep politics out of the classroom, I don’t think it’s appropriate, but how can I begin to provide accurate information without being accused of having a political agenda?  I feel as though students are constantly trying to hijack the discussion boards for political purposes,  and it’s just getting worse.  Do any of you have similar stories?

One Response to “Change is afoot!”

  1. Max Baskin Says:

    Howdy, prof. I’m in your upcoming Classical Foundations class (UMUC, Summer 2010) and was poking around since my Spring classes are finished and I wanted to prep for next month.

    You pose a pretty nasty catch-22 in your post. I don’t think there is a way to avoid politics in the discussion forums. You can’t really eliminate a topic without stifling debate and hindering the learning process. At the same time, misinformation and thread hijacking hinder the learning process too.

    The only solution I can think of off the top of my head is to make sure that all sides are represented equally and that discussions be accompanied by an academically valid references. At least that way anyone who wants to bring something up would have to be able to back up what they were saying.

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