Democracy’s Education: Public Work, Citizenship, and the Future of Colleges and Universities

Released: Feb. 1st

By: Harry Boyte

Summary: Democracy’s Education grows from the American Commonwealth Partnership, a year-long project to revitalize the democratic narrative of higher education that began with an invitation to Harry Boyte from the White House to put together a coalition aimed at strengthening higher education as a public good. Beginning with an essay by Boyte, “Reinventing Citizenship as Public Work,” which challenges educators and their partners to claim their power to shape the story of higher education and the civic careers of students, the collection brings world-famous scholars, senior government officials, and university presidents together with faculty, students, staff, community organizers, and intellectuals from across the United States and South Africa and Japan. Contributors describe many constructive responses to change already taking place in different kinds of institutions, and present ideas like “civic science,” “civic studies,” “citizen professionalism,” and “citizen alumni.” Authors detail practical approaches to making change, from new faculty and student roles to changes in curriculum and student life and strategies for everyday citizen empowerment.


Higher Education in the Digital Age

Released: Jan. 25th

By: William Bowen

Summary: Bowen, one of the foremost experts on the intersection of education and economics, explains why, despite his earlier skepticism, he now believes technology has the potential to help rein in costs without negatively affecting student learning. As a former president of Princeton University, an economist, and author of many books on education, including the bestseller The Shape of the River, Bowen discusses the dizzying array of new technology-based teaching and learning initiatives, including the highly publicized emergence of MOOCs. Based on the 2012 Tanner Lectures on Human Values, delivered at Stanford University, the book includes responses from Stanford president John Hennessy, Harvard University psychologist Howard Gardner, Columbia University literature professor Andrew Delbanco, and Coursera cofounder Daphne Koller.


Liberal Learning and the Art of Self-Governance (Routledge Frontiers of Political Economy)

Released: Feb. 9th

By: Emily Chamlee-Wright

Summary: Concerns over affordability and accountability have tended to direct focus away from the central aims of liberal learning, such as preparing minds for free inquiry and inculcating the habits of mind, practical skills, and values necessary for effective participation in civil society. The contributors to this volume seek to understand better what it is that can be done on a day-to-day basis within institutions of liberal learning that shape the habits and practices of civil society.


Locus of Authority: The Evolution of Faculty Roles in the Governance of Higher Education 

Released: Jan. 25th

By: William Bowen and Eugene Tobin

Summary: Locus of Authority argues that every issue facing today’s colleges and universities, from stagnant degree completion rates to worrisome cost increases, is exacerbated by a century-old system of governance that desperately requires change. While prior studies have focused on boards of trustees and presidents, few have looked at the place of faculty within the governance system. Specifically addressing faculty roles in this structure, Bowen and Tobin ask: do higher education institutions have what it takes to reform effectively from within? The authors use case studies of four very different institutions—the University of California, Princeton University, Macalester College, and the City University of New York—to demonstrate that college and university governance has capably adjusted to the necessities of the moment and that governance norms and policies should be assessed in the context of historical events.


Mind Change: How Digital Technologies Are Leaving Their Mark on Our Brains

Released: Feb. 10th

By: Susan Greenfield

Summary: Neuroscientist Susan Greenfield brings together a range of scientific studies, news events, and cultural criticism to create a snapshot of “the global now.” Disputing the assumption that our technologies are harmless tools, Greenfield explores whether incessant exposure to social media sites, search engines, and videogames is capable of rewiring our brains, and whether the minds of people born before and after the advent of the internet differ.

(Next page: Practice-based learning; how to keep students in STEM)

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