Sunday, October 24, 2010

Links ...

  1. Mark Liberman at Language Log: Merle Haggard's ex-wives. Has some great examples of hilarity produced by the absence of the final serial comma -- like in, "This book is dedicated to my parents, Ayn Rand and God". Though these examples are not original to LL, you get them all here in one place.

  2. Bad news for British universities: "the amount of money going to higher education will decline by 40 percent over the next four years, from 7.1 billion pounds (about $11-billion) to 4.2 billion pounds (about $6.6-billion)."

  3. How do you "measure academic value in dollars and cents"? Texas A&M University shows the way: Putting a Price on Professors. [See also: A Tale of 40 Professors at Texas A&M by Richard Vedder.]

  4. Yet another story on Kota (Rajasthan), the cram school capital of India. This one is by Tim Sullivan of AP.


  1. truti said...

    It has become synonymous with IIT entry, drilling students in the brutal system of rote memorization at the core of the country's educational system.

    I wish they employed more science/maths literate journalists. Only an ignoramus would talk like this. The JEEs are not a test of memory, rote learning doesn't help, there are few numerical problems, if at all. The problems are hard and demand very sound understanding of basics which can't be memorized. There are no "plug-in-the-numbers" type of problems. But he does get other things right; the second tier is very poorly developed. Why? The government arrogates to itself the right to run the educational sector, the institutions that control quality, set the curriculum, and even the salaries paid. Which is why only crooks will venture into this sector, people with ethics will stay out. Bad money drives out the good. India needs about 200 IITs and atleast 50 IISc/BHU type univesities. It's a mystery how we get by with barely 20.