Looking for an easy A? Don’t take my class

I understand the desire to find easy classes. The possibility of a decent grade without having to put in too much work is quite appealing. The temptation to find an easy class increases when looking for courses outside of one’s major, whether they are general electives or core curriculum classes. I too had those moments […]

5 reasons to add a minor in the humanities or social sciences

It is that time of year when students – at my university and elsewhere – are beginning to register for spring semester courses. This also makes it a good time to reconsider one’s program of study and choice of major/minor. I’ve written before about the virtues of a social science and humanities majors (see […]

No, you don't NEED to study that

I teach freshmen every semester. A lot of them. In fact, in my world history course (HIST150: The West in the World), at least 80% of the 210 students are freshmen. Since I constantly encourage students to meet with me, I have had numerous discussions with students about their choice of major (or lack thereof), […]

Research (again) Values Humanities and Social Science Degrees

Many students come to college not knowing what they want to study, or not sure that their true passion could be translated into a practical career (who hires historians or linguists or anthropologists, right?). So they either consult one of many stupid articles that claim to tell them what are the best (or worst) college […]

Don't just break the glass ceiling. Shatter it.

This week, I talked with my students about opportunities for women, why women face more challenges in building meaningful careers, and what we can all do to change that. Here’s a transcript of what I said in class.

I concluded last week by saying that women tend to struggle more with making plans for the […]

72%: No Top-Tier Grad School for Me

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72% of my students don’t believe they could attend a top graduate program even if money wasn’t an issue. That is one finding of a quick survey I ran in class, to which 208 students responded. The results are similar to those I received in prior surveys, and they beg the question: who made our […]

Question #3

Questions will be posted mostly on the Facebook page from now on, with occasional updates here. The latest question is posted below.  

Q: I like the courses I’m taking so far except one. I just feel that class isn’t for me. Since I missed the opportunity to drop the class I’m thinking I’ll probably […]

Question #2

Q: I’m a sophomore and haven’t yet decided on a major. My parents and everyone in my family think I should study business so I can get a good job after college. I would really want to study history or anthropology, but I’m afraid I won’t be able to get a job with a liberal […]

Question #1

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Here at Ball State, our semester begins this week, so there’s no better time to post the first question, which I received from a student a couple of days ago (text edited lightly).

#1 Q: You always tell your students to connect with their professors, to open up to them, because that will help them […]