Friday, May 1, 2009

Should professors edit their methods of teaching to reverse the recent decline in reading?

claim: We can improve our nation's decline in reading by altering our teaching methods.

Giving students the option of what they want to read is a key factor into increasing the amount of reading done by students on their own and for school. Ruth Cox Clark, an associate professor in the department of library science & Instructional Technology at East Carolina University can attest to the limited variety and amount of books on classroom reading lists. “By being given limited set of titles, categorized by reading levels, which can vary greatly from one source to another, the students lose out on the wonderful, and in my opinion, necessary experience of browsing through libraries and bookstores to self select books that appeal to them for whatever reason” (Clark). Limiting a student’s reading list limits their interest. Without having the option to read a certain book students feel more obligated to read than motivated. This becomes more apparent later in secondary schools. At a young age children are appraised for reading anything they pick up, but with assigned readings students tend to lose the enjoyable part of reading. Lois Stover, a national expert on young adult literature and the Chair of the Education Department, agrees that “children who loved reading in elementary school learn…to hate it as they enter junior high or middle school”. By expanding the list of what a student can read, they will once again “remember the delight of entering a book and finding ourselves mirrored there…that encourages such identification” (Stover). Without the ability to explore your own interests in books you cannot fully appreciate the value of reading.


I commented on CEC's blog ("Who Care If Johnny Can't Read?") about whether or not people should view movies as a replacement for reading books.
I commented on CEC's blog about "online, are you really reading?"

Monday, April 6, 2009

Is The Economy Making Us Fatter? (Edited)

Before leaving for college we heard our fair share of warnings about living on campus from our parents. One of the most "visible" of these warnings is the freshman 15. We worry that our parents will ask us the question "have you gained weight?" But who do we have to blame? Could ALL of the 15 pounds be our fault? Since the downturn of the U.S.'s economy we have paid much closer to the "99 cents" deals at fast food joints and the two-for-one's at local restaurants.

A surprising survey shows that "over 1,000 Americans revealed that 25 percent were more likely to eat high-calorie comfort food because of the economic downturn." This applies most of all to college students because of how much our diets could change compared to our meals at home where our parents usually choose what we eat. The lack of home cooked meals we have when staying in residence halls might have affected your diet. We are more likely to choose the cheapest alternative because we must ration how much we spend on our food as compared to how much we spend on other things such as paper, ink, etc. The healthier alternatives are replaced with "frozen meals loaded with fat and sodium." Can we blame the economy for our poor eating habits? Or are we solely responsible for the 4th meal runs to taco bell late after midnight? The reality is that we are the ones who make the decisions.

The truth is nobody forces us to eat anything. If you happen to have a meal at a more carb-loaded place consider the alternatives. Many fast-food restaurants have increased the amount of healthy products on their menus to promote healthier lifestyle and as students it is our choice to take advantage of that.
(Originally Posted 2/28/09 9:40 PM)


I commented on Catherine Breaux's Blog on the decision students make to attend a public or a private college.

Guns On Campus

Most recently the debate on whether or not handguns should be allowed on campus has stricken some SMU students with fear. The passing of this bill would allow "those able to legally obtain a concealed weapon permit to carry their weapons on college campuses, which is currently unlawful." Since the Virginia Tech massacre some students have questioned whether or not having a student on campus with a permit to carry a concealed weapon might have prevented the event from ocurring. But wouldn't the easier access to handguns just add fuel to the fire?

I believe the passing of this bill would increase the chances of history once again repeating itself. As you may have heard the debate over the amount of nuclear weapons between the United States and Russia 23 years ago has yet to be resolved. As a result a "fateful missed opportunity to end the threat of nuclear Armageddon and to prevent the subsequent birth of new nuclear weapon states in India, Pakistan, North Korea and now possibly Iran" is just now up for review in 2010 (N.Y. Times). The United States' and Russia's failure to come to terms on whether or not these weapons should be mass produced paved the way for other countries to abuse the use of nuclear technology.

This bill must be resolved and quickly for the safety's sake and the security of all Texas college campuses. The bill is easily debatable, but as a student I would find no comfort in the fact that my peers could potentially hold the power to initiate violence.

Friday, March 27, 2009


I commented on Rochelle's blog about whether or not music should be free.

Saturday, February 28, 2009


I posted on azninvasions blog about H20 flow.


I posted on David Jeffrey's Blog about False Fun.

Another Juicy Campus?

Since the removal of a popular internet site titled "Juicy Campus" many have questioned whether or not it is ethical. Including a very popular question asking whether or not our freedom of speech should be censored. On many sites anonymous users post whatever thoughts they please on the Web, more popularly known as a blog. Some people are victims freedom of speech. 

Many students claim that Juicy Campus is the site where they get all of their "insider" information on campus life. I personally have heard one girl say that anything she reads on Juicy Campus she believes to be true. I believe that this site has more popularity than SMU's own "Daily Campus". This may be a result in our generation's high interest in the amount of gossip and opinions in college. Another site called "Dirtydtown" has been on the uprise since the ending of the juicy campus website. This site is essentially the same thing as Juicy Campus except that anonymous users can post photos of their peers usually in the midst of doing something they regret. What makes people so intrigued by this site is that they can actually put a face to a name. This could damage a lot of students' futures/careers. Which leads us to question whether or not Dirtydtown should receive the same punishment as JuicyCampus.