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Higher education and academia

I write extensively on the challenges that we face in academic life, and the frustrations we have to deal with on a daily basis. This page is intended to collect my blog posts on the topic.

In defense of libraries.

I wrote in defense of libraries worldwide, partly because I’m a book worm, but also in particular because I love library science. Moreover, I realize that a well-stocked library is fundamental to the development of a literate society, which is why I donate books and promote libraries whenever I can and as much as I can. Also, I think that cities that lack robust libraries throughout their territory are making a big public policy mistake.

In defense of the research manager and administrative assistant positions in academia

We need research managers and administrative assistants, period. Their work is invaluable in doing paperwork and engaging in the logistics and administrative burden of running events, managing projects, ensuring that payments come out at the right time.

Working with research assistants: My approach and philosophy

One of the reasons my scholarly productivity went up (literally, through the roof) during a previous stage of my academic career was the fact that I had not one, but two amazing research assistants. Whatever I needed done (assemble datasets, create tables, format journal article manuscripts, organize my academic life), they were there. In this post I reflect on how we should treat our research assistants and share my approach and philosophy.

Dealing with rejection in academic writing and academia in general

My previously stellar record both in grant writing and in journal article publishing got a bit of a clobbering a few years ago. I got grant proposals that I had really put my heart and soul into them (and that I thought were spectacularly well written) rejected. In this post I reflect on how we can deal with the fact that rejection is part of academic life.

“But mostly, just Grant Me”: Dealing with grant writing as an early career scholar

I also reflected on the need for grants to move your research forward. I’ve written about this topic often because it’s something that comes up regularly.

Should qualitative research be subjected to the same transparency requirements as quantitative scholarship?

As someone who does multiple methods but is primarily qualitative now I am always concerned with the fetichisization of quantification as a model and requirement for rigorous research. In this post I discuss my qualms about sharing my raw research and fieldnotes.

The ethics of peer review: Some tips and best practices

I discuss some of the challenges of current peer review practice and offer a few suggestions for best practices.

A few pieces of advice for academic presenters

Wherein I discuss the “do’s” and “don’ts” of academic presentations.

Breaking the vicious cycle of grant funding and writing

In which I discuss one of the worst realities of grant writing and funding – to get funded, you need funding. That is, to do more projects with external funding, you need to be successful at least once before. My post discusses my experience with this conundrum.

Teaching in English in a Spanish speaking country

I decided since I arrived to Mexico from Canada that I would continue teaching in English despite the fact that Mexico is a Spanish-speaking country, and my institution grants degrees where courses are taught in Spanish. I think it’s proven an effective strategy to enhance my students’ language skills.

Reporting on higher education needs more diverse voices and the New York Times is NOT on it.

Wherein I complain about how the NYT only asks traditional questions about higher education and forgets people of color and marginalized academics.


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