Archive | 2017

Teens and Technology: Few Simple Answers

Have smartphones destroyed a generation? Jean Twenge of San Diego State University asked this question in a widely-discussed article in the September 2017 edition of The Atlantic. She concludes that teens are on the verge of a mental health crisis due to the constant presence of these devices, which have been shown to have negative effects […]

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Republicans Are Right, College Matters

This week, it’s my pleasure to post a thoughtful essay by Susan Engel, Senior Lecturer in Psychology at Williams College. Engel responds to a surprising trend in the United States: a majority of surveyed Republicans now believe that higher education operates against our national interest. In a brief accompanying comment, I attempt to capture the […]

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Reflections on “Artful Scribbles”

The scholarly journal Studies in Art Education has published a commentary by Howard Gardner in which he reflects on his 1980 book Artful Scribbles: The Significance of Children’s Drawings. Thinking back on his work in the 1970s, Gardner reviews his reasons for writing the book, as well as which of its elements he considers durable and which […]

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How Do Future Students Get a Whiff of College? A Century-Long Perspective

When few students pursued higher learning, the decision to attend college was based chiefly on family background and geographical propinquity. In the last century, however, attendance at college and university has become much more frequent—at least half of American secondary school graduates eventually pursue some kind of higher learning. Not all students have choices about […]

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The End of Final Clubs

As a member of the Harvard faculty, I’ve been asked for my opinion about the recommendation to phase out the College’s “final clubs” over the next few years. On a theoretical or philosophical level, there are justifiable arguments on both sides. Those in favor of maintaining such organizations invoke freedom of assembly. Those in favor […]

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