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BY TIM JOHNSON | September 10 2012

Academics need the media to help publicize their work, but when important findings are distorted it can lead to decades of distrust.

It wasn’t the message they’d meant to send – not at all, as a matter of fact. When Andrew Weaver and Neil Swart of the University of Victoria’s school of earth and ocean sciences published
BY DANIEL DROLET | September 10 2012

Watching porn on a laptop during class, taking a cellphone call in the middle of a lecture, repeatedly interrupting with comments and jokes – there are many ways for students to disrupt a class.

Zopito Marini, a professor at Brock University who holds the Chancellor’s Chair for Teaching Excellence, has studied what he calls civil behaviour – or lack of it – in classroom settings. He says disruptive or uncivil behaviour is anything that diminishes the teaching and learning opportunitie...
Careers Café
BY JO VANEVERY | August 20 2012
The imminent beginning of a new academic year seems like a good time to broach this difficult topic. Before you make another tuition payment, it's a good idea to make a conscious decision about whether doing a PhD is still the right path for you.

How do you feel?

This is a serious questio...
The Black Hole
BY DAVID KENT | August 10 2012
For those who have not yet heard, the CIHR plans to make major changes to their funding mechanism for health scientists. Last week, at the height of summer vacation, the CIHR released a "What CIHR heard" document that summarizes the feedback they received on the proposed changes. At first, I was ...
BY JANNA ROSALES | August 07 2012

A university teacher argues for “contemplative practices” in university teaching to help students become more reflective and engaged as citizens.

“Become.” This simple and concise statement frames the campus brand at Memorial University, my alma mater and where I now work. The slogan strives to inspire students to fulfill or at least tap into their inherent potential, but the brand campaign has me wondering more deeply: What do we become ...
The Black Hole
BY JONATHAN THON | July 30 2012
The following is my response to a letter from Canada's federal minister of health, Leona Aglukkaq, who was in turn responding to an earlier letter from me: Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Thank you first and foremost for taking the time to respond to my letter on February 7, 2012, regardin...

Romantic partners who are employed at universities in different cities confront many challenges in making their relationships work.

For more than two decades, Claire Carlin and Bruce Wonder have been making the four-hour trek by ferry and car between Victoria, B.C. and the state of Washington, alone or together, dozens of times a year. The marathons began less than a year after they met at Western Washington University in Bel...
Careers Café
BY JO VANEVERY | June 04 2012
Moving from an academic environment into the workforce is a difficult transition. Think about all those highrise office buildings in downtown Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Halifax, … Thousands of people work in those buildings. Then there are all of the people who work outdoors, or from home, o...
The Black Hole
BY JONATHAN THON | June 04 2012
In the 1990s the typical PhD in biological sciences entered the job market in their mid 30s, after spending approximately 3.8 years as a postdoctoral fellow (National Academy of Science, Enhancing the Postdo...

New report calls for more central planning in setting numbers and kinds of medical residents.

A new report calls for sweeping reforms to postgraduate medical education in Canada, changes that could ultimately affect the delivery of healthcare in the country. Released in March, the report makes 10 recommendations, including a proposal to change the number and mix of general practitioners and ...

Inaugural awards from McConnell Foundation aim to celebrate CSL initiatives and encourage universities to continue their efforts.

It’s not every law student that has the opportunity to work on a potentially precedent-setting case heard by the Supreme Court of Canada. But that’s what a group of law students at the University of Ottawa did last year, in a case involving clean-up costs of several contaminated sites in Newfoun...
Speculative Diction
Over the past two years or so, I’ve been stewing quietly about a particular issue in Canadian education. Much of the recent media coverage about PSE in Canada is concerned with tuition costs and accessibility, faculty performance and salaries, government spending on education, and the various fail...
The Black Hole
BY JONATHAN THON | May 04 2012
It falls to scientists to speak up in support of federally funding research and in this third installment of a four-part series, I explore the economic cost of doing research in a cash-strapped system and the burden this is placing on young investigators. To bring yourself up to speed, installeme...
Careers Café
BY LIZ KOBLYK | April 30 2012
Tax season always seems like a good time to talk about money. Regarding money, career advice tends to range from “qid=1335801646&sr=8-1" target="_blank" rel="noopener">do what you love and the money ...

Each new student to be assigned an enrolment specialist and to develop a learning plan.

First-year students entering the University of British Columbia’s Vancouver campus this fall can expect a more personal touch, thanks to changes the university is making to its enrolment procedures. The enrolment changes are among several UBC is implementing in admissions and student-support servi...
The Black Hole
BY DAVID KENT | April 04 2012
We were thrilled this quarter to welcome Dr. Jonathan Thon to the Black Hole in the capacity of regular contributor.    He's enthusiastically launched himself into the online blogging world with several articles and I've tried to scatter in a few along the way.  If you fancy doing something simil...
BY LÉO CHARBONNEAU | April 02 2012

This is one of the few undergraduate degree program in thanatology in Canada.

Students taking the introductory course in thanatology at King’s University College are asked to spend a couple of hours in a cemetery to look around and reflect...

Researchers find students are willing to follow no-smoking policies if they know what the rules are.

A Canadian study published last year in the Journal of American College Health found that every college and university that the researchers surveyed had a tobacco control policy o...
The Black Hole
BY DAVID KENT | March 12 2012
Over the last months, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) have conducted an extensive review of their grant programs and have released a document to describe these changes.  In a demonstration of top tier accountability, they have opened a multi-stage and...
From the admin chair
BY DOUG OWRAM | March 05 2012

What I learned from reading the biography of Steve Jobs.

Like thousands of others, I received Walter Isaacson’s biography of Steve Jobs for Christmas this year. While this may seem of marginal rel...
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