The Fragility of the Modern College Student

In her article “The Educational Power of Discomfort,” Irina Popescu talks about the challenges presented by student “fragility”: “I mean the fragility I witness when a student misses an assignment because he simply forgot to check the syllabus, or when a student speaking aloud in class for the first time starts shaking, or when a student who is handed back an incomplete paper with a C on it immediately tears up. I am talking about the fragility that follows their separation from the structured patterns of high school and middle school, as they are thrown into a world where the future is unknown. There are no more good-job-dinosaur-with-a-thumb-up stickers for simply getting a task done in college. That lack of consistent positive reinforcement often discourages and upsets them, especially in a writing class where so much depends on the transcription of our own personal visions and interpretations.” Her answer to more »

Changes Are Coming to MLA, and They’re Huge!

First of all, if you just figured out MLA, don’t panic. Most of the changes in the eighth edition look to be changes for the better. That is to say, they make documentation more straightforward. Most significantly, the source type is no longer considered. That’s right, you no longer have to worry about whether a source is a newspaper or a magazine or a travel brochure before you can determine how to cite it. All sources now follow the same basic guidelines for works cited entries: Author Title of Source Title of Container Other contributers Version Number Publisher Publication date Publication location Read more about how this will work and see other significant changes here.  

“Most Likely to Succeed” via Slate.com

You wouldn’t know it to look at the products, but the school yearbook business is kind of shady. There’s a good chance you and your kid’s school are paying way too much for yearbooks… When Aaron Greco, a young tech entrepreneur, started sniffing around the yearbook business a few years ago,…he realized, was that big yearbook providers were producing their books using offset printing—an expensive printing system that’s great for books with large print runs but that leads to high costs and little flexibility for yearbooks, whose print runs number in the hundreds or low thousands. Over the past decade, we’ve seen the rise of digital on-demand printing, which is now commonly used for photo books (the sort you order from Shutterfly or Blurb) and self-publishing. Greco had a brilliant idea: Why not use the same printing process for yearbooks? Thus was born TreeRing, Greco’s four-year-old yearbook startup, which now more »