Dorfman
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Surprise: Humanities Degrees Provide Great Return On Investment

Completing a humanities degree is a good marker for economic success. I regularly tell my students that their liberal arts degree will make them competitive for internships, and that it’s the internships (plural) that will get them their entry-level jobs. The present value of the extra earnings that graduates in humanities majors can expect over their lifetime is $302,400 for drama majors, $444,700 for English majors, $537,800 for history majors,…

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#Gamergate—and what it means for gaming in education

Gamergate originally began as a hashtag in social media after an independent game developer’s ex-boyfriend made public allegations against her regarding a close relationship between the developer and a journalist in exchange for positive press, which was later proven false. Since then, the controversy has escalated to reveal what many in the gaming industry say is a bias against women in gaming, evidenced not only by death and other malicious…

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I gave my class a Poem to read. The author’s Name — I hid.

I gave my class a Poem to read. The author’s Name — I hid. I said, “What if my sole Intent Were to really flip your lid? “What if I removed Dashes — And lowercased some Words?” The students said, “Well, Dr. Jerz, Then you would be a jerk.”   P.S. It wasn’t actually an Emily Dickinson poem, and I hadn’t actually changed it at all, but some students guessed she…

Imagine what your professor's closet looks like. Tweed. Acres of tweed.
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Why do academics dress so badly? (Answer: they are too happy)

I used to wear a suit and tie when I taught technical writing at my previous job. In part I was sending a message that technical writing is a profession, and in part I was playing dress-up to enjoy the first full-time job I’d ever held (at age 29, after 11 or so years doing various part-time jobs that fit around my schedule as a full-time college student). For just…

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Measuring Humanities Degrees Misses Much of Their Value

“I don’t see why we are fixated on the single category of income as a measure of success,” James R. Grossman, executive director of the American Historical Association, wrote in an email to The Chronicle. “If humanities majors tend to become teachers, social workers, clergy, does that mean they are less successful than money managers or engineers? “Instead of assuming these humanities majors are less successful, we ought to be thanking them…

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How To Talk To Babies About Semiotics (and Marxist Theory)

BABY: read dog book again ME: okay fine show me where the yellow doggie is on this page BABY: [points] ME: good now show me where the brown doggie is on this page BABY: [points] ME: now show me where the author is BABY: [stares blankly] ME: that’s right the author is dead via Mallory Ortberg, How To Talk To Babies About Semiotics. BABY: [sleeps] ME: HAVE YOU QUESTIONED ANYTHING…