Archive for Canada

Kicking into (Over)drive

Posted in Legal issues with tags , , on 21 March 2011 by Steve

“A storm broke on February 26th when word got out that publisher HarperCollins had unilaterally decided to limit the ‘shelf life’ of its ebooks catalogue. Overdrive, a major distributor of ebooks in the public library world, found itself caught between the publishing powerhouse and a furious library community when it was announced that library loans of ebooks would be capped at 26 …” (more)

[slaw, 21 March]


Doctor’s report pulled over plagiarism concern

Posted in Legal issues, research with tags , on 20 February 2011 by Steve

“When a medical ethics report co-authored by a top Canadian doctor was published, it was hailed as ‘required reading’ for all health-care providers and medical students. Now, people can’t distance themselves from the report fast enough …” (more)

[Margaret Munro, University World News, 20 February]

Blogging, Tweeting and the Next Generation of Scholarly Collaboration

Posted in research with tags , on 14 February 2011 by Steve

“Academic bloggers gathered at Osgoode Hall Law School to discuss their insights and experiences working with online forums through blogging and other social media sites. The panel discussion took place on February 9, 2011 and included Professors Simon Fodden, Sonia Lawrence, Kate Sutherland, and Giuseppina D’Agostino …” (more)

[Leslie Chong, IP Osgoode, 13 February]

Tories accused of academic witch hunt

Posted in Legal issues with tags , on 13 February 2011 by Steve

“Two University of Ottawa professors, vocal critics of the federal Conservative government, say they have become targets of a new political intimidation tactic aimed at using their private, personal information against them …” (more)

[Susan Delacourt and Bruce Campion-Smith, University World News, 13 February]

Climate Scientist Sues Skeptic for Libel

Posted in Legal issues, research with tags , , on 9 February 2011 by Steve

“A prominent Canadian climate scientist is suing a leading climate skeptic for libel, arguing that an article published online in January contained false and malicious claims …” (more)

[John Collins Rudolf, New York Times, 8 February]

13 arrested in crackdown on illegal textbooks

Posted in Legal issues with tags on 23 January 2011 by Steve

“Thirteen people were arrested last Thursday after the Royal Canadian Mounted Police raided four photocopy stores in Montreal and seized hundreds of counterfeit university textbooks in what they described as an attempt to put an end to the illegal sale and distribution of the photocopied books …” (more)

[University World News, 23 January]

The Impact Factor

Posted in teaching with tags on 31 December 2010 by Steve

“… How do you come to accept that you don’t, and can’t, know everything? Each year I’m introduced to new articling students who I don’t think can top the previous year’s group, and every year I’m proven wrong. Yet, no matter how intelligent, and how keen, they are surprised by all the information they don’t know …” (more)

[Karen Sawatzky, slaw, 31 December]

Textbook Publishers and Rich Media

Posted in teaching with tags , on 29 December 2010 by Steve

“I recently had coffee with a dear man that has spent his entire career in textbook publishing. He told me that his industry was essentially ‘broken’. Of course, this is now a common view of textbook publishing …” (more)

[Keith Hampson, Higher Education Management Group, 29 December]

Legal Publishing: The Next Generation

Posted in research with tags , on 27 December 2010 by Steve

“… One key theme in discussions about how to deliver information over the Internet is that consumers now expect information to come in bite-sized chunks. I take that to mean a paragraph or, at the most, a page. To what extent can we deliver legal information in small chunks? Here’s some news: a lot of legal information by its very nature requires much more than one page if it is to be explained fully …” (more)

[Susan Munro, slaw, 27 December]

Rebuilding a Law Library, Part 3: Is There a Place for Law Reports?

Posted in research with tags , on 16 December 2010 by Steve

“… Fact is, our extensive collections of bound law reports are no longer used. Osgoode’s have been in storage for over a year as the new library is being built, and no one has missed them …” (more)

[Louis Mirando, Slaw, 16 December]

Big drop in maths skills of students

Posted in teaching with tags , , on 24 October 2010 by Steve

“The mathematics skills of students entering Canadian and US universities have declined sharply in recent years, with many students unable to do basic arithmetic. Educators are divided on how much it matters …” (more)

[Anne Kershaw, University World News, 24 October]

The Charter Right to Criticize a Prof

Posted in Legal issues with tags , , on 18 October 2010 by Steve

“This past week the Alberta Queen’s Bench released Pridgen v. University of Calgary, 2010 ABQB 644, a decision which quashed the academic discipline of students who had criticized a university professor. The applicants were participants in a Facebook group that used potential defamatory statements, which prompted in a complaint by the professor that resulted in non-academic discipline for misconduct …” (more)

[Omar Ha-Redeye, Slaw, 17 October]

The Unbearable Lightness of Rankings

Posted in Governance and administration with tags , on 7 October 2010 by Steve

“In September 2010, Maclean’s magazine published its fourth annual survey of Canadian law schools. As some of you will know, Maclean’s ranks Canada’s common law and civil law schools according to criteria of its own choosing …” (more)

[Dean Sossin’s Blog, 4 October]

Quiz: What university administrator are you?

Posted in Governance and administration with tags , , on 7 September 2010 by Steve

“What kind of university administrator would you be? The type who lets a lot of money go to waste on unproductive activities, allows faculty to slack off, and ultimately oversees an inefficient use of taxpayers’ money? Would you aggressively seek to rein in frivolous expenses, steadfastly make the necessary cuts (even deep ones), and keep employees (faculty, that is) on their toes? …” (more)

[Exponential Book, 7 September]

Rented textbook option gains ground

Posted in teaching with tags , on 29 August 2010 by Steve

“Students at Carleton University in Ottawa will have the option of renting their textbooks from the beginning of the upcoming semester …” (more)

[University World News, 29 August]

The Death of Universities

Posted in Governance and administration with tags , on 11 August 2010 by Steve

“… The most important goal of a university education is to teach student how to think and a major component of that process is critical thinking. Unfortunately, sitting in front of your monitor reading a lecture is not the best way to learn how to think and it doesn’t give you any practice in critical thinking. There’s a reason why students need to interact with other students and scholars in a university setting and it’s very sad that people like Bill Gates don’t get it …” (more)

[Sandwalk, 10 August]

Have Canadian Law Schools Become ‘Psychotic Kindergartens’?

Posted in Life with tags on 7 June 2010 by Steve

“Canadian bloggers have been buzzing in the last week about a harsh critique of the country’s law schools, which are compared to ‘psychotic kindergartens’ in a journal article published by Robert Martin, a retired law professor at the University of Western Ontario …” (more)

[Inside Higher Ed, 7 June]

Higher education or education for hire?

Posted in Governance and administration with tags , on 6 June 2010 by Steve

“Teaching critical thinking is the university’s democratic mission, and today’s universities are failing to deliver, argues the University of Ottawa’s Joel Westheimer in an article in the latest edition of the Canadian journal Academic Matters. Universities need to reverse the trend that has them focusing on workforce preparation and the commercialisation of knowledge and resurrect higher education’s public purpose …” (more)

[University World News, 6 June]

Alberta principal vetos kilt at graduation

Posted in Governance and administration with tags on 24 May 2010 by Steve

“Hamish Jacobs is a graduating high-school student in Alberta, Canada. In deference to his Scottish heritage, he proposed to wear a kilt to the graduation ceremony, but the principal has rejected this proposal as being ‘inappropriate’. Evidently, principal Mark Beazer is unfamiliar with the formal attire of other nations, and people in Scotland are up in arms over the issue …” (more)

[Cory Doctorow, Boing Boing, 24 May]

Improbable research: Canadian law faculties ‘like psychotic kindergartens’

Posted in Life with tags on 17 May 2010 by Steve

“A mighty steam organ of an article, adorned with the title University Legal Education in Canada is Corrupt Beyond Repair, blasts forth in the October 2009 issue of the scholarly journal Interchange …” (more)

[Marc Abrahams, Guardian, 17 May]