The state of higher education in 2017

Good evening!

I can’t believe I’ve let almost a year go by since updating this blog. I love writing, and I never intended to wait this long to post, but I figured it was time to get started again. Since the election, my mind has been refocused on the importance of education, facts and teaching our students that yes, there are proper places to find good, reliable information so they can be informed, thoughtful citizens.

While I’ve been incredibly sad and discouraged by the election results, I’m also more fired up than I’ve ever been. I’m incredibly worried about the state of education as a whole, not just as the university level. There are so many important, current topics that I don’t know where to begin — the possible (and I think probable) confirmation of Besty DeVos as Secretary of Education, the whole “alternative facts” saga and Trump’s general disregard and disrespect for the scientific community. As I begin to post more over the coming weeks, I would like to talk about these in more depth.

The news is not necessarily good from a General Education perspective. It has not taken long for the attack on information literacy to begin, as I hear more and more arguments about how any news source is valid these days. The High Plains Daily Leader and Times published a strange op-ed on how there is apparently no way to actually teach a student what sources are valid. It is no wonder, then, that the concept of alternative facts don’t bother a certain segment of the population.

As academics, we must be willing to face these issues and acknowledge them, even if we don’t enjoy the topic. We are doing out students a great disservice otherwise.

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