The Becker Blog

On being an academic, farmer, writer, scientist, programmer, educator, designer, mom, ...

  • Worth Sharing: 3 Ways to Get More Women Into Tech

    Worth Sharing: 3 Ways to Get More Women Into Tech

    What are YOU doing in your courses to encourage more women to enter and continue? The president of Harvey Mudd College shares the strategies it’s used to interest more female students in computer...

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  • “Artspeak”, meet “Edspeak” – same S#!+, different pile.

    “Artspeak”, meet “Edspeak” – same S#!+, different pile.

    The inflated style is itself a kind of euphemism. A mass of Latin words falls upon the facts like soft snow, blurring the outlines and covering up all the details. The great enemy of clear...

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  • Worth Sharing: Abusers and Enablers in Faculty Culture

    Worth Sharing: Abusers and Enablers in Faculty Culture

    Academe is full of Petruchios looking for their next Kate. Source: Abusers and Enablers in Faculty Culture This article is absolutely bang on. In academia: Abuse is normalized. Abusers destabilize...

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  • Smart Watches in Exams? Why NOT?!

    Smart Watches in Exams? Why NOT?!

    The question of what to do about smart watches in exams came across my feed. Predictably, the typical response is to simply not allow them. I’ve got news for you all….. this won’t fix the problem....

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  • On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 5

    On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 5

      Once we knew we would not be able to keep Rubic, we started looking for a replacement. This is one of the many many places where having a reputable, caring breeder comes in handy. Not only did...

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  • On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 4

    On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 4

    Arrow grew into the absolute most trustworthy guardian any human could ever hope to ask for. He steadfastly REFUSED to harm ANYTHING (that didn’t belong on our property**).   WARNING: This is not...

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  • On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 3

    On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 3

    Just so you know, at the time of this writing, Arrow is still with us, but he’s been slowing down for some time, and is now definitely showing his age. On our farm, we have a number of animals who...

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  • On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 2

    On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 2

    I’m the one on our farm who has primary responsibility for all the lives that exist on that farm. I’m the one who makes almost all of the life and death decisions on our small farm, even though...

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  • On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 1

    On Grief And Farming (A.K.A. Me and My Arrow) Pt. 1

    On a farm, we often have to cope with grief while the object of our grief is still here. We are far from unique in this. Lots of people are forced to deal with this when they find out their …...

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  • 5 mistaken differences between education games and the gamification of education

    5 mistaken differences between education games and the gamification of education

    And 12 ways in which these ideas are problematic. Gamification is generally defined as the use of game design elements in non-game contexts. Fair enough. But this is pretty much where the article...

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  • Would You Buy This Book: Death to Deadlines….

    Would You Buy This Book: Death to Deadlines….

    Death to Deadlines: Gamification and Other Subversive Thoughts on Formal Education With any luck at all, this book will save you countless hours heading down rabbit holes. While you might find...

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  • Academic mobbing, or how to become campus tormentors | University Affairs

    Academic mobbing, or how to become campus tormentors | University Affairs

    Yup. If anyone wants to know why I gave up a job I had loved for over 20 years (and was VERY good at); why I gave up my tenure, THIS IS WHY. People I thought were my friends, whom … Continue reading →

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  • Why do eggs have so many shapes?

    Why do eggs have so many shapes?

    A massive new study finds that how much a bird flies influences how their egg rolls OK. Great webpage, design-wise. BUT, I have TWO problems with the science. Yes, yes, I don’t have degrees in...

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  • Gene Rummy Released!

    Gene Rummy Released!

    Gene Rummy is now available! Both the Full and Novice versions are available for purchase now! Gene Rummy is a bunny-themed card game that helps teach the basic principles of Mendelian...

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  • We Are Finally Ready (Almost) – Gene Rummy

    We Are Finally Ready (Almost) – Gene Rummy

    It’s been a long time in development, but I am thrilled to announce that we are finally in the last stages of development. There is one more set of tests to complete, one more set of adjustments…...

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  • Worth Sharing: ‘Collaboration’ Creates Mediocrity, Not Excellence, According to Science | Inc.com

    Worth Sharing: ‘Collaboration’ Creates Mediocrity, Not Excellence, According to Science | Inc.com

    Boy, can I relate to this: A recent study published in Applied Psychology has now confirmed that a collaborative work environment can make top performers–the innovators and hard-workers–feel...

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  • [Gameful Learning] Table of Contents for Gamification 101

    [Gameful Learning] Table of Contents for Gamification 101

    Here is the current Table of Contents for Gamification 101 (Book 1) Gamification 101: An Inquiry Based Journey Part 1 – Background Prologue What s Gamification? A Description of the Course Part 2...

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  • [Gameful Learning]: TWO BOOKS

    [Gameful Learning]: TWO BOOKS

    I’ve decided to split my new book into two parts. Book 1 working title – Gamification 101: An Inquiry Based Journey ~ 150-200 pages; likely retail price: under $30 This book is written as a kind...

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  • New Book: Choosing and Using Digital Games in the Classroom: A Practical Guide

    New Book: Choosing and Using Digital Games in the Classroom: A Practical Guide

    I am thrilled to announce that my book is now available. This book is full of lists and practical advice on how to use games in the classroom. It takes you from the theories that underpin both...

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  • The Clark-Kozma Debate in the 21st Century

    The Clark-Kozma Debate in the 21st Century

    For a long time now, this paper has been the most popular paper on my academia.edu collection, and I finally figured out why…… Turns out, this paper is required reading in a number of courses,...

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