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Month: September 2018

Wonkhe: A Hierarchy of Purposes in Higher Education

Wonkhe: A Hierarchy of Purposes in Higher Education

My latest Wonkhe article looks at the various purposes fulfilled by higher education and concludes that it’s time to make receiving a degree conditional upon passing a basic national test in Maths and English. Read the full article here: A hierarchy of purposes in higher education

D&D Political Alignments

D&D Political Alignments

YouGov recently put out the results of a poll which had attempted to classify the UK population in terms of D&D Alignment. Whilst an awesome concept, it did also produce a few peculiar results, mainly because of the way it relied on self-classification to determine alignment; nevertheless, it makes interesting and amusing reading. This prompted me to classify political ideologies by D&D alignment, with the following result:       Lawful Good   Conservatism       Neutral Good  …

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Two Charlies

Two Charlies

I recently reread Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. It’s fascinating that for two books that are so similar – same author, same series, same length, similar vocabulary levels and sentence structure – there are still several features of the latter  that make it a noticeable, if small, step up in difficulty. Most obviously, Chocolate Factory has 30 chapters while Elevator only has 20.  As the books are the same length, chapters in Elevator…

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A University Challenge Ranking

A University Challenge Ranking

Many football fans have a complex system of which team to support in any given match, based on a wide variety of factors that may appear arbitrary and inpenetrable to the outsider, but internally to them makes complete sense. I have a similar system for determining which team to support in University Challenge. This entirely serious in every way and not at at all arbitrary ranking is as follows: – Christ’s College, Cambridge – Emmanuel College, Cambridge – Bath Spa…

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A Better Secondary School History Curriculum

A Better Secondary School History Curriculum

There are three years of compulsory history in secondary school. That’s just nine terms. If history at primary school is about awakening the love of learning, and more advanced study is about in-depth study and the development of historiographical skills, the best way of using these three years is by ensuring that everyone who goes through them as a broad overview of the sweep of human history and how different historical events and their legacy contribute to making the world…

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