Paying for the Party: How College Maintains Inequality
Elizabeth J. Armstrong & Laura T. Hamilton
I really enjoyed this book, and it motivated me to shift my studies toward looking at various inequalities in higher education. The authors make it very plain how colleges maintain inequality between the affluent/well-connected and the disadvantaged through the perpetuation of a “party pathway.” This pathway gives too much power to the social aspect of college (i.e. fraternities and sororities) and further hampers students who: are unfamiliar with this way of life; face challenges being accepted into the gatekeeping entities of this aspect; join the pathway but really shouldn’t (since it advantages well-connected and socially affluent students); or simply can not afford to spare the time to this way of life (due to factors such as needing to work while in school). There is no doubt in my mind that one of the worst things about college is that 2 students can go through the exact same program, have the exact same GPA, and still end up with widely unequal outcomes due to social forces that one of the students may not be aware of or familiar with.
Storytelling with Data: A Data Visualization Guide for Business Professionals
Cole Nussbaumer Knaflic
Thank goodness for this book. On the administrative side of my higher education endeavors, I find myself dealing with more data and statistics than ever. Of course, all of this material usually needs to end up in some kind of report, and we don’t want to bombard a reader with a clunky-looking graph, do we? This book helped me to determine clear, organized ways to visualize data. The biggest thing I get from this text – less really is more.
Rethinking Education in the Age of Technology: The Digital Revolution and Schooling in America
Alan Collins and Richard Halverson
This is the first book I read that focused on the shift in education due to technology, and I remained hooked on the subject for several years (culminating my studies of the topic with the release of my book, Paradox of the Learning Game: The Promise and Plight of Video Games and Learning).
Disrupting Class: How Disruptive Innovation Will Change the Way the World Learns
Clayten Christensen, Michael B. Horn, Curtis Johnson
This is a rather exciting book that kind of “tore the walls down” of my view on the potential of learning technologies.
Leadership on the Line: Staying Alive through the Dangers of Leading
Ronald A. Heifetz and Marty Linsky
A wonderful read. From this book I learned the very important method of “Getting on the Balcony,” meaning if you were on the balcony viewing your interactions and such with other people in a room or space, how do you think you would look?
Win them over Faster: Dynamic Techniques for College Adjuncts and New Faculty
The adjunct life is an interesting one, that’s for sure. There’s one advantage, however – you can focus strictly on the teaching. I used this book as part of my past efforts to strengthen my teaching and will definitely refer to it as I continue to work on my craft. The author’s style and voice is very easy to get into, making this an enjoyable read as well as an informational one.