ArchiveSeptember 2018

HARKing: Hypothesizing after the results are known

This article considers a practice in scientific communication termed HARKing (Hypothesizing After the Results are Known). HARKing is defined as presenting a post hoc hypothesis (i.e., one based on or informed by one’s results) in one’s research report as if it were, in fact, an a priori hypotheses. Several forms of HARKing are identified and survey data are presented that suggests...

He’s a Professor of Bhang, not a drug dealer!

Why, oh why, won’t the cops leave us alone? The life of an academic is tough enough already. I’m curious where he received his PhD. Are they hiring? A 46 -year-old man was arraigned in court after he was allegedly found with 25 rolls of bhang. Police said they arrested Ibrahim Mutuku with bhang valued at Sh500 on September 5 in Nairobi’s Highrise estate. The suspect however stunned...

Faculty life is crazy: reference letter edition

Writing a reference letter is very bad! Administrators at Plymouth State University in New Hampshire are forcing an education professor to undergo sexual harassment training. The professor, Michael Fischler, isn’t accused of sexual misconduct or of violating Title IX—the statute that mandates sex equality in education. He’s not accused of doing anything wrong at all. He merely wrote a...

Academics are nasty: dinosaur edition

The author seems surprised at how nasty academics are; clearly she has never worked with faculty. Good read about a scientist’s persistence with her research: Keller’s resistance has put her at the core of one of the most rancorous and longest-running controversies in science. “It’s like the Thirty Years’ War,” says Kirk Johnson, the director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural...

Why faculty are so miserable

Raj Raghunathan: If you take the need for mastery—the need for competence—there are two broad approaches that one can take to becoming very good at something. One approach is to engage in what people call social comparisons. That is, wanting to be the best at doing something: “I want to be the best professor there is,” or something like that. There are many problems with that, but one big problem...

Why are professors “poorly paid”?

As an aside, his analysis of American Time Use Survey diary data demonstrates those lazy professors work almost 50 hours a week during the academic year, and 40 hours a week during the summer (see his Table 2). I have documented a large pay disadvantage of academics behind otherwise identical doctorate-holders. Part of this disadvantage is a compensating pay differential arising from the more...

“These 3 NC colleges drastically dropped tuition. The result was like a ‘booster rocket.’”

A new, lower tuition rate is drawing more students to three UNC campuses, resulting in record undergraduate enrollment growth this fall. The NC Promise program, funded by the legislature at $51 million this year, allowed Elizabeth City State University, UNC Pembroke and Western Carolina University to decrease their tuition to $1,000 a year for in-state undergraduates and $5,000 a year for out-of...

The political affiliation of college faculty

This guy actually tracked down the party registrations of almost 9,000 faculty members! Interestingly, he finds almost a quarter of faculty at liberal arts colleges aren’t registered to vote. If you assume these individuals are relatively apolitical, then the numbers would look quite a bit different. These are ratios of registered Democrats to Republicans: According to this graph, if you...

How to handle criticism, via the Beatles

… as when a reporter in L.A. says, “In a recent article, Time magazine put down pop music. They referred to ‘Day Tripper’ as being about a prostitute and ‘Norwegian Wood’ as being about a lesbian. And I just wanted to know what your intent was when you wrote it, and what your feeling is about the Time magazine criticism of the music that is being written today...

The social justice mob is now censoring research

Hard to believe this is happening in the U.S., you’d expect this kind of stuff from totalitarian regimes like China or North Korea. The end result will be scientists censoring themselves, especially graduate students and junior faculty who do not have the luxury of tenure. That’s really the goal of the mob: intimidating faculty into silence. Theodore Hill, a retired professor of...

About me

Stephen

Professor and quant guy. Libertarian turned populist Republican. Trying to learn Japanese and play Spanish Baroque music on the ukulele.

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