Necessary and Sufficient Conditions in Higher Education

I think that most important decisions, realisations and insights in life are essentially irrational, or a least a-rational, processes.  This may sound odd, but I mean that who you fall in love with, which music you like, what politics you espouse, which career you choose – the things that shape your...

Qualification or Formation?

I tweeted out something about universities as places of formation. Oliver Quinlan said he liked the way it was expressed and asked if I had I done a blog about Qualification vs Formation. I hadn’t, so here it is: a blog on the difference between Qualification and Formation, and the place that universities...

Academic Empathy

An occasional paper given at The Faculty Institute of Graduate Studies (FIGS) within the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at UCL November, 2013. Academic Empathy: A concept worth bearing in mind? Abstract Talk of empathy is everywhere: in science, the humanities, business and politics. Yet do we, as academics,...

Generation Blend

This year on Arts and Sciences BASc at UCL, several students studied MOOCs and used online sources alongside their undergraduate modules at UCL. I knew anecdotally of around  8-10 students who were doing this so I wrote to them to ask how they had used MOOCs and other online sources to supplement and...

The New Amateurism

I blogged recently on dilettantism. This was intended as a piece of provocation. But it was also, in my view, an optimistic take on the ‘New Renaissance’ brought about by the knowledge revolution and new ways of learning and working that we are seeing. The suggestions were meant as playfully...

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