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Report Weighs the Benefits and Risks of Social Networks

Report Weighs the Benefits and Risks of Social Networks:F91A5A0B-3542-4E4C-B581-57E4EA99DB4E.jpg

The Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University is about to release a report that — according to The New York Times, which reviewed an early release — lifts the patina of pederasty that has long plagued social networks. While acknowledging the reality of isolated incidents, the report redirects the focus to the many positive aspects to social networks, and points out the adverse effects of child-child bullying both on and off the Net, according to The Times article.

(Via The Chronicle: Wired Campus Blog.)

Students Save Big by Renting College Textbooks at Chegg

Thanks to the Internet, there are now a whole lot of new ways to save money on college textbooks.  Here’s yet another new innovation that uses the Internet to help students save money: college textbook rentals at textbooks

How does this work?  Students rent their textbooks from Chegg at approximately 80 percent off the cover price, plus a shipping fee.  At the end of the semester, they send the books back (there’s free return shipping).  Students need to keep the rented books in good condition and cannot write in them, but minor highlighting is allowed.  The company also buys and sells books, so if you’re looking for a good place to unload a book at the end of the semester, check out Chegg.

In addition to extra green in your wallet, Chegg comes with another green perk.  Whenever a student rents, donates, or sells a book, Chegg plants a tree.  Isn’t that a cool idea?  That really puts the environmental issues associated with textbook use into perspective.  These books don’t just cost too much money, they cost too many trees.

Wow, I wish I had services like these available when I was a student.  Give Chegg a try and see what you think.

Mothers on Hunger Strike to Fight Educational Cutbacks

Families in Miami protesting educational budget cuts. Source: Miami Herald

Families in Miami protesting educational budget cuts. Source: Miami Herald

Here’s quite a remarkable story. Mothers of students at a Doral, Florida high school are on a hunger strike.  Why?  They’re protesting against high school funding cuts, which may include cutting the gifted program and reducing the length of the school day.  They’re also angry that the school’s principal, who was recently voted Florida’s principal of the year, was removed by the district from the school and relocated to help out a struggling school.

The State of Florida just cut the overall education budget by a half billion dollars.

I hope this news story receives national exposure.  It really says quite a bit about the state of education in our country.  As Arne Duncan gets sworn in as educational secretary, I hope he’s keeping tabs on this story.

10 Best Value Colleges in the United States

When it comes to paying for a college education, everyone’s looking for a bargain — and thanks to the Princeton Review, students have some help looking for the best deals.  According to the Princeton Review, here are the top 10 “best value” colleges in the United States.

university of virginia

1. University of Virginia (Charlottesville, VA) (more…)

The Perks of Skipping High School and Going Straight to College

Bored with high school? Consider early admission!

Bored with high school? Consider early admission!

Are you an excellent student who can’t stand high school anymore?  Maybe you need to go college.  And thanks to a number of options, you might be able to go after your sophomore or junior year of high school.

How does this work?  Some colleges have early admissions programs for exceptional high school students.  A unique school that’s especially designed for this purpose is Bard College at Simon’s Rock in Massachusetts.  Students typically come to this small school after their sophomore year and earn either an associate’s or a bachelor’s degree. Many transfer the credits they earn in their two years at Bard to other four year schools. Other colleges and universities have smaller programs designed for students who want to do early admission, so check with colleges that interest you or your guidance counselor to find such programs. (more…)

An Educational Wish List for President-Elect Obama

barack obamaDear Mr. Obama (soon to be Mr. President),

I am a former college professor and a writer who specializes in educational topics.  As such, and as the mother of a young child, I have some serious concerns about education in the United States.  I know you do too, so I thought I would write you a wish list of the changes I hope you will help bring about.  Yes, I know the economy is in the toilet and that you might not be able to grant me all of these wishes right now, but since you are putting together a substantial package to stimulate the economy, I hope you will be keeping education in mind.  After all, if we don’t educate our children well, how will we compete in the global economy?

First, I hope you will take some serious action to make college more affordable to Americans.  In the past 25 years, college expenses have increased at three times the rate of family income, and at the rate we’re going, it’s quite plausible that in the next few decades, a college education will become unaffordable for most Americans.  I know you agree with me that this is unacceptable in America.  Students need more access to financial aid, and not just student loans, since it’s not fair for students to start their careers buried in debt, and state schools need better funding so they don’t need to rely so much on tuition. (more…)

College Apps Are Done!

Finally, I am able to say all my college applications are completed and turned in! Now all I can do is sit back, relax, and wait to see who offers me a spot in the class of 2013. I will be hearing in a few days from one of my schools, another on February 1, but all the others I will not here from until sometime in April. This wait for many can be extremely hard.students relaxing

I, although would like to know, am not going to be worried about which colleges decide I am a best fit until the day comes when I am supposed to find out from all my schools. My college advisor has told me multiple times, as have other students who are now freshmen in college, to not worry. Why worry, because worrying won’t get you into the schools. Let the schools review the applications and let them decide while you try to push your application out of your mind until you hear a decision. If you are in the same spot as I am, which I hope a lot of seniors are at this time, don’t worry! Let the colleges decide and allow yourself to attempt to push the apps out of your mind for some time.

Sit back and relax if you have finished your apps! No point in worrying because its no longer in your hands. Just hope for your best.

High School Stress Leads to Baldness

Yes. I fear I may lose all my hair by the time I turn 25. All because of stress. Most High School students are familiar with stress and how it works its evil ways and it works itself into your life and never seems go away. But of course, whether or not you allow the stress to get the best of you or consume your life is what is key.

Stress management is one of the most important things to learn early on in your academic career and be sure to maintain throughout the years, even in college. Stress can cause bad habits, such as overeating, loss of sleep, and another habits such as nail biting that never seem to go away. My friend recently told me to remember when you are stressed to remember you are a person and not just a student. This is actually a great piece of advice. It’s telling you to look at other aspects of your life when one stresses you out and try to focus on other things in order to remove the stress. (more…)

Senioritis Lingers as Holiday Break Ends

senioritisToday was the last day of break and I must be honest, I’m not ready to return to school and my routine I have during the week. Break has allowed me to go to sleep and wake whenever I want, do whatever I want, and be with friends and family constantly. Now school begins in less than 12 hours and I’m torn between returning and not leaving my break.

The hardest thing during second semester, that almost all seniors deal with, is senioritis. While many of us may have felt it once or twice, I can tell it’s starting to grow and I know it will be much harder to go through my second semester. While I know I’ll be dealing with senioritis, I also realize I cannot allow for it to get the best of me. (more…)

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