New articles from Academic Matters

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There is more to Academic Matters than just the print issue. New articles are being added to the Academic Matters website every week. Here are some recent articles you might find interesting:

“Mind the gap”: Critical insights on the urgent transition to online learning in a time of crisis
By Dianne Conrad
In this three-part series, Dianne Conrad draws on her many years of experience in online learning and on research in the field to critically consider the wide range—and depth—of issues that shape a transition as large as the current one. She considers not only the logistics of making the shift, but also issues of culture, language, and pedagogy. As she details, pedagogical positioning is often more important for success in online teaching and learning than the learning management systems and other technologies used.
Part one / Part two / Part three

Low funding for universities puts students at risk for cycles of poverty, especially in the wake of COVID-19
By Tracy Smith-Carrier, Western University
“Postsecondary education has consistently been linked to the promise of a better life. Graduating from postsecondary study has been identified as the single most important factor affecting intergenerational mobility. Yet, several factors at play today show how this function of postsecondary education is in crisis in Canada…”

Online learning during COVID-19: 8 ways universities can improve equity and access
By Nadia Naffi, Université Laval; Ann-Louise Davidson, Concordia University; Azeneth Patino, Université Laval; Brian Beatty, San Francisco State University; Edem Gbetoglo, Université Laval, and Nathalie Duponsel, Concordia University
“This summer, universities around the world planned for an unprecedented back-to-school in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. In most universities, centres of teaching and learning are responsible for supporting faculty members’ teaching for more effective student learning and a high quality…”

Stop telling students to study STEM instead of humanities for the post-coronavirus world
By Alan Sears, University of New Brunswick and Penney Clark, University of British Columbia
“Finally, someone has figured out how to put an end to students wasting their lives in the quixotic pursuit of knowledge associated with the humanities. The government of Australia announced in June a reform package that would lower fees for what are considered “job-relevant” university courses…”

COVID-19 outbreaks at universities: Students need safe places to socialize, not partying bans
By Leo Erlikhman, Queen’s University, Ontario
“As universities have reopened in various ways this fall after spring COVID-19 closures and a rapid move to online learning, new challenges are emerging. Beyond navigating a “new normal” of both virtual and in-person academic learning, universities must confront questions about student life…”

Gaining knowledge is what makes a degree valuable, not graduate salaries or transferable skills
By Paul Ashwin, Lancaster University
“The unexpected social and economic challenges brought by the coronavirus pandemic have given increased urgency to questions about the purposes of a university education and the kinds of graduates that society needs. Much of this debate has focused on the extent to which university degrees…”

Renowned educator Paulo Freire would have questioned how we are schooling our kids in the age of COVID-19
By Antonia Darder, Loyola Marymount University and James D. Kirylo, University of South Carolina
“Schools across the globe are struggling to provide online academic alternatives during the coronavirus, especially for students from racially and economically marginalized groups. While online education is not new, its mass proliferation amid the pandemic is, and it’s radically changing the face of education…”

How COVID is widening the academic gender divide in Australia
By Kirsty Duncanson, La Trobe University; Natasha Weir, La Trobe University; Pavithra Siriwardhane, RMIT University, and Tehmina Khan, RMIT University
“From the first rumblings of its spread, COVID-19’s impact on women academics was immediate. In a sign of the gendered nature of the pandemic’s impacts, men’s research submissions to academic journals almost instantly increased by 50%, single-author articles by women dropped…”

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