A good article to remind us to take care of our “humanity” during this busy time of the year.
Information below is taken directly off the journals website:
- Where (location, organization, university, etc.) is the journal?- Place of Public Relation: Irvine CA 92619-4821, USA. As a way to cut the cost, our operation office is located in China.
- What is SCIRP? Scientific Research Publishing (SCIRP) is one of the largest Open Access journal publishers. It is currently publishing more than 200 open access, online, peer-reviewed journals covering a wide range of academic disciplines. SCIRP serves the worldwide academic communities and contributes to the progress and application of science, by delivering superior scientific publications and scientific information solution provider that enable advancement in scientific research. More than 5000 professional editorial board members support our publishing activities, and 32000 authors already published with SCIRP
- What is Open Access?All original research papers published by SCIRP are made freely and permanently accessible online immediately upon publication. To be able to provide open access journals, SCIRP defrays operation costs from authors and subscription charges only for its printed version. Open access publishing allows an immediate, world-wide, barrier-free, open access to the full text of research papers, which is in the best interests of the scientific community
- High visibility for maximum global exposure with open access publishing model· Rigorous peer review of research papers, Prompt faster publication with less cost, Guaranteed targeted, multidisciplinary audience.
As it turns out, this journal was identified as predatory by a list of criteria provided to our department from the Va Tech library staff. Our department submitted a couple of manuscripts to this publication that were instantly accepted and asked for no revisions. After working with the Va Tech library staff, the decision was made to no longer submit work to this open access journal.
After researching MOOCS a bit, I ran across a few interesting articles. One article I found listed all the places you could access free, online classes. But, what I found to be disturbing is that one of the larger suppliers of “free” online course, Udemy, actually charges. The courses I search ranged from free to $500. Other articles such as these two( http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303759604579093400834738972, https://chronicle.com/article/MOOCs-Are-Usefully-Middlebrow/143183/ ) are reporting that while MOOCS has good intentions, they are not great. They have a 90% drop-out rate, students feel isolated and disengaged and the content is watered- down.
What would I change in higher education? This is a tough question since we can hypothetically only change one thing. I think I would change the learning environment. I would move more toward student-centered learning, active learning, and/ or problem based learning. The University of Virginia medical school has taken this type of approach with their students. You can read more about their teaching philosophy here: http://uvamagazine.org/features/article/adjusting_the_prescription/#.Up9F40KWydw.
As I think about my past two years here and all the classes I have taken, I almost regret all the time I’ve spent on projects and papers that really didn’t lead to anything more than a grade at the end of the term. I would have liked for the projects and papers to have been applied somehow to a larger context, such as a service learning project that would benefit an organization in the community. Or, work that could result in a manuscript or part of my dissertation. I’ve had the opportunity to be a teaching assistant in a class that used service learning and also in a large lecture class. From my perspective, the students involved in service learning grew more from this experience and I’m not sure how much of the information from the large lecture class will be retained after students move on. This type of change may not work for everyone, but I believe it would help with student engagement and satisfaction.
Being a faculty member means you are intellectually curious and engaged in discovering both questions and answers to issues relevant to your discipline, your community, your country and your world. Your intellectual curiosity will hopefully drive your research. Being a faculty member means you will be charged with disseminating your knowledge through teaching and community engagement. As a professor, a faculty member should strive to involve a students’ curiosity, present the information clearly and meaningful, and create an environment conducive to active learning and questioning. Being a faculty member means you will be a role model and advisor to others, particularly students who you are working directly with. With this duty comes responsibility and ethics. As a faculty member you will be in a position of power so it is important to recognize this and be responsible and ethical with that power. It will be important to be fair, open-minded, empathic, friendly, ethical and motivating; but at the same time to maintain respectable boundaries. Being a faculty member means individuals, governments and organizations will look to you, your work, your department, and your department’s work for information crucial to decision making. As it will be impossible to predict the future reach of one’s work and how it may one day affect other people’s lives; consequently, this thought should guide the integrity of your work at all times. Above all, being a faculty member means you are in a special position to be of service to others, expand your intellectual capacity, be a life-long learner and teacher, and to make a difference in your community.