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Education

Hal Harris's picture

Sleights of Mind: What the Neuroscience of Magic Reveals About Our Everyday Deceptions

Sat, 01/01/2011 - 00:00 -- Hal Harris

Magic shows don t work on children if they are not old enough to have developed the expectation that causes have predictable effects. They accept what their senses tell them, without constructing models that that make the surprising result unexpected.

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Mistakes Were Made (but not by me: Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts

Fri, 10/01/2010 - 01:00 -- Hal Harris

I bought "Mistakes Were Made ..." for on a long plane ride, thinking that it would be a light, entertaining read. It did turn out to be very entertaining, but it also has affected the way I think about politics, law, ethics, and the teaching of science.

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The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and Choice Are Undermining Education

Wed, 09/01/2010 - 01:00 -- Hal Harris

In 2002, President George W. Bush signed the bill that made No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law. It was a culmination of sorts of tides that had been growing for years, through both the Clinton and Bush administrations, toward sweeping reform in US schools.

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Don't Be Such a Scientist: Talking Substance in an Age of Style

Sat, 01/02/2010 - 01:00 -- Hal Harris

One of the most memorable lectures I have ever experienced was given by Nobelist Willard Libby. He spoke at University of California, Irvine in 1968 or 1969, but the essence of his talk about the atmosphere of Venus is still fresh in my mind because he told such an engaging, entertaining story.

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Am I Making Myself Clear?: A Scientist's Guide to Talking to the Public

Fri, 01/01/2010 - 00:00 -- Hal Harris

The world has never more needed public understanding of science than it does now, and those of us in science education have a special obligation in this regard. The answers to health care, climate change, conservation of the environment, and so forth are not going to be found in science alone, but if they are to be addressed rationally, science literacy will be necessary.

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Schoolhouses, Courthouses, and Statehouses: Solving the Funding-Achievement Puzzle in America's Public Schools

Thu, 10/01/2009 - 01:00 -- Hal Harris

America's public schools are in trouble, and there are few who would disagree. But despite billions of dollars spent in "reform" efforts, little real progress seems to be occuring. No Child Left Behind (NCLB) was a step (or a misstep, perhaps) toward greater accountability by schools for student achievement.

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Science Teaching as a Profession: Why it Isn't How it Could Be

Wed, 07/01/2009 - 01:00 -- Hal Harris

The shortage of well-trained science teachers is widely recognized, but the solution to the problem requires first an appreciation of its causes. This little book, which is available free online, addresses the tangible and intangible reasons why fewer talented people choose science teaching as a career or choose not to stay in teaching.

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Measuring Up: What Educational Testing Really Tells Us

Fri, 08/01/2008 - 01:00 -- Hal Harris

Whether you are trying to choose a school for your child (or deciding which district to move into), evaluate a student or a teacher, comply with the requirements of No Child Left Behind, admit students or apply for admittance, or compare the educational systems of different countries, there is likely to be some kind of a test involved.

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