• Unintended consequences: The use of metrics in higher education

  • Is there a metric 
to evaluate tenure?

  • The abuses and perverse effects of quantitative evaluation in the academy

  • Dérives et effets pervers de l’évaluation quantitative de la recherche

  • Collecting data from students with students

  • Waking up to the reality of Canadian higher education

  • Understanding the United Kingdom’s Teaching Excellence Framework and its implications

Featured Articles

Race and gender still an issue at academic conferences

In the midst of social justice movements such as #MeToo, pervasive sexist and racist attitudes are being examined across all sectors, including academia. The earth, oceanic and atmospheric sciences, collectively known as the geosciences, are the least diverse of all within STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math). To examine this issue further, we studied […]

A university president apologizes for academia’s role in residential schools

Earlier this month, I stood before hundreds of people gathered at the University of British Columbia and publicly apologized for the role my university played in perpetuating the Canada’s Indian residential school system, which caused harm to Indigenous people for more than a century. Many survivors of residential schools were in the audience. As president […]

Can we really teach ‘Indigenizing’ courses online?

On April 16, Canadians — and internet users around the world — have the opportunity to participate in “Indigenous Canada,” a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) offered through the University of Alberta and the Coursera consortium of online learning providers. Similar courses — for instance on “Reconciliation through Indigenous education” and “Aboriginal worldviews and education” […]

Stop treating students like customers and start working with them as partners in learning

Students and lecturers at the University of Queensland researching ‘students as partners’ activities across Australian universities. The University of Queensland University is a big investment. Students want value for money because a future of debt is scary. But there is also a danger when we talk about higher education only in financial terms. It shifts […]

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Blog Posts

Editorial Matters: Alluring figures

There is an appealing simplicity in numbers. A number’s value is never ambiguous, even if its meaning can be. Numbers are specific and easily compared to one another. They allow us to measure the dimensions of an object or to describe the outcomes of a decision. There has long been a desire to use numbers […]

Congress 2017: Challenges to the integrity of academic hiring practices

During Congress 2017, a session on the Challenges to the Integrity of Academic Hiring Practices in the Corporate University encouraged participants to ask themselves some difficult questions about the value of Canadian training in sociology. After a long and intensive discussion, members of the Canadian Sociological Association passed a motion to research hiring trends in […]

Congress 2017: Ask Someone You Don’t Know About Something You Don’t Know

Above the Expo in a hallway, I found an art installation exhibit that, in a quiet and unassuming way, pulled together many of the overarching themes of Congress this year. Held May 27–June 2 in Toronto, Congress 2017 set out to push attendees to think about Canada’s past, while imagining what the next 150 years […]

Editorial Matters: The comforts of common sense

“Keep hold of a few plain truths, and make everything square with them. When I was young … there never was any question about right and wrong … Every respectable Church person had the same opinions. But now, if you speak out of the Prayer-book itself, you are liable to be contradicted.” Those are the […]

Are books ready for the dustbin of history?

Are books a condition of our labour? Do we need libraries with stacks and physical collections? Recent discussions within libraries across the country have highlighted faculty anxiety and displeasure with the fate of university libraries, as cuts are made to purchasing and operating budgets, collections culled, and the very nature of acquisitions transformed by changes […]

Can Collegiality Be Negotiated? University Governance and Collective Bargaining

After a marathon bargaining session that stretched into the pre-dawn hours of November 26, 2015 the Nipissing University Faculty Association (NUFA) reached a tentative deal with its employer that ended a twenty-five-day strike, the first ever for faculty at this small, northern Ontario University. The issue that galvanized the approximately 170 tenure-stream faculty members to […]

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