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Education

Submission + - How Would You Improve Homework? 1

Wellington Grey writes: "A Penn State study on homework find that more homework is not helpful:

"Instead of improving educational achievement in countries around the world, increases in homework may actually undercut teaching effectiveness," says David P. Baker. "Most teachers are not making efficient use of homework, they assign homework mostly as drill, to improve memorization of material either in math, science or the humanities."

My school has a policy that recommends about six hours of homework a night. A lot of this work seems like busy work that is not always beneficial to the students. What do you think is the appropriate amount of homework? More importantly, what would you do to improve the quality of homework? What kind of activities should the students be engaging in that aren't just math-drills?"
The Internet

Submission + - Is old boys club choking UK broadband? (pcpro.co.uk)

Barence writes: "Former colleagues connect everything from the Ofcom boardroom to the Government, to Britain's biggest broadband companies. While Britain struggles with broadband speeds that are slower than those of Hungary, Slovakia and Poland, those at the forefront of the industry pat themselves on the back for a job well done. The question is whether our internet is suffering as a result of the ties that connect the senior players in the British broadband industry. This article exposes the connections are keeping UK broadband down."
United States

Submission + - Personality Types Cluster Geographically

Hugh Pickens writes: "Drawing on a database of hundreds of thousands of individual personality surveys, psychologists have mapped the distribution of personality types across the United States and interestingly, America's psychogeography lines up reasonably well with its economic geography. Greater Chicago is a center for extroverts and also a leading center for sales professionals. The Midwest has a prevalence of conscientious types who work well in a structured, rule-driven environment. The South, and particularly the I-75 corridor, where so much Japanese and German car manufacturing is located, is dominated by agreeable and conscientious types who are both dutiful and work well in teams. Regions like Silicon Valley or the high-tech Route 128 corridor around Boston are home to concentrations of open-to-experience types who are drawn to creative endeavor, innovation, and entrepreneurial start-up companies. One potential explanation is that people migrate to places where their psychological needs are easily met or perhaps a process of selective migration drains the agreeable and conscientious regions of the most driven, most creative, and most mobile — only reinforcing their psychogeographic profiles, while magnifying the innovative edge in places where open-to-experience types concentrate."
Education

Submission + - University teaches that P2P systems are illegal (vmk.zhdk.ch) 2

PsyQ writes: The University of Liverpool in one of its IT lectures claims that "P2P (peer to peer) systems that enable web surfers to 'pirate' music have been deemed illegal." A very bold statement, since it isn't true in most of the world. I pointed out the error and was basically told to shut up immediately. They claimed it's simply a fact, although I've provided some proof that it isn't, at least not everywhere, and that a blanket statement like that is wrong. Is it normal that universities get away with teaching such unverified/vague/misleading information? They aren't even willing to discuss.
Security

Submission + - Engineers == terrorist mindset?

whoever57 writes: An article EE Times, notes a study by two Oxford University researchers — Diego Gambetta and Steffen Hertog" in which they point to overrepresentaion of engineers in Islamist movements, and especially in violent groups. The paper's abstract states: "We find that graduates from subjects such as science, engineering, and medicine are strongly overrepresented among Islamist movements in the Muslim world, though not among the extremist Islamic groups which have emerged in Western countries more recently. We also find that engineers alone are strongly over-represented among graduates in violent groups" The original paper is here

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