Monthly Archives: September 2017

Do students have any feel for maths?

Many times in my lectures I derive an equation and I ask my students how they would linearise the equation in such a way as to inform their data analysis. For example, last week I derived an expression of the … Continue reading

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STEM: from harmless acronym to dangerous idea?

This is the (rough) script of a short talk I gave at last week’s T&L Day in DCU  ____________________________________________________________________________________________   Before I start I want to mention something about the School of Biotechnology because it has had an impact on … Continue reading

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Are the universities being “hollowed out”?

This letter to the Irish Times from a Trinity academic paints a pretty bleak picture of the culture in Irish Universities. There’s a lot in the letter, some of which I agree with (e.g. the sad fact that university education … Continue reading

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The HPAT and the Cult of Empathy

The recent media coverage around the HPAT is interesting for two reasons. Firstly, the idea that you should even attempt to test an 18/19-year old’s character for its suitability for a career in medicine before subjecting them to six years … Continue reading

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Can students write?

This article in the Guardian is pretty scathing about Irish university students’ ability to write, especially essays. I teach all years of a four-year science degree and my thinking about writing skills is this: Students arrive in college and they … Continue reading

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