Posted July 30, 2014

Highlights from recent stories about Temple in the Media

New Temple Option admissions path earns front-page Inquirer coverage—and more
The launch of the Temple Option was covered prominently in the local and national media in the 24 hours after it was announced. The Inquirer published a front-page story featuring quotes from Provost Hai-Lung Dai, Senior Vice Provost for Enrollment Management William Black and College of Education Dean Gregory Anderson. "We cannot ignore the mounting evidence that standardized test scores inject socio-economic bias into the admissions and financial-aid equations," said Dai. "I'm elated and celebrating the fact that Temple is doing this," School District of Philadelphia Superintendent William Hite said. "It provides new opportunities for the children in this city who may have the skills and abilities, but may not have the access to the things like SAT prep."
Chronicle of Higher Education, Reuters, Inside Higher Ed, Philadelphia Inquirer, WHYY/NewsWorks, 6ABC, CBS3, Fox29, KYW News Radio, Al Dia, many more | July 29-30, 2014

Temple data journalism expert’s story on standardized testing featured in The Atlantic
Meredith Broussard
, an assistant professor in Temple’s School of Media and Communication, wrote about her quest to use her data journalism expertise to fix a problem in her local public schools. “It may be many years until Philadelphia’s education budget matches its curriculum requirements,” she wrote. “In the meantime, there are a few things the district—and other flailing school districts in America—can do…. At the very least, stop using test scores to evaluate teacher performance without providing the items each teacher needs to do his or her job. Most of all, avoid basing an entire education system on materials so costly that big, urban districts can’t afford to buy them.”
The Atlantic | July 15, 2014

New York Times essay on “metrics of attraction” by Temple mathematician
In a Times essay, mathematician John Allen Paulos, who acknowledged his “sometimes reductionist mind-set,” explored a statistical thesis to gain a better understanding of a subject that, to many people, defies explanation—crushes. Paulos began by imagining a person to be an assemblage of personal and situational traits, then applied sampling bias and Bayes’s theorem—while explaining that scientists can get crushes in their own professional endeavors (not on people, but on hunches and “pet approaches”). “Whether in abstract science or in everyday living, crushes provide the chaotically bubbling energy of life,” he wrote. “We should be skeptical of them, but we should also cherish them.”
New York Times | July 14, 2014

TUJ Dean Stronach interviewed on internationalization of Japanese higher education
As part of a series on the internationalization of Japanese higher education, Bruce Stronach, dean of Temple University, Japan Campus, sat down for an in-depth interview with the editors of Nikkei, one of Japan’s leading national daily newspapers. “Universities need diversity, but that is not a problem in the United States as the world’s most diverse country,” Stronach said. “American universities are judged by their ability to provide an environment where diversity truly prospers. For example, our provost at Temple’s Main Campus is from Taiwan, and the dean of a small college where I studied in the 1970s was from China. Would that be possible in Japan?” (No English-language link available.)
Nikkei Sangyo Shimbun (Japan) | June 12, 2014

SMC Dean Boardman: “Hey, publishers: Stop fooling us, and yourselves”
“For an industry built on a foundation of truth-telling, the newspaper business sure has trouble telling the truth about itself,” wrote David Boardman, dean of Temple’s School of Media and Communication. Boardman criticized a presentation about the rosy future of the newspaper industry presented at an international conference. “There is no doubt that newspapers accelerated this decline with the astounding, quarterly-returns-driven decimation of their products over the past decade,” wrote Boardman, who also serves as president of the American Society of News Editors. “But to pretend that the profound shift from fiber to cyber is anything short of a revolution in news consumption is a disservice to journalism and to the democracy that depends upon it.”
Poynter | July 16, 2014

Temple psychologist criticizes methodology of self-proclaimed teen violence expert
Motivational speaker, author and television personality Phil Chalmers brands himself as “America’s leading authority on juvenile homicide and juvenile mass murder.” But Temple psychologist Laurence Steinberg, former director of the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Adolescent Development and Juvenile Justice, is among the scholars who contend that the methodology behind Chalmer’s profiling of juvenile teen killers is flawed. “There may be lots of factors that kids who have committed homicide share in common,” Steinberg told Newsweek, but “there are probably millions of people who have those factors who haven’t committed homicide.”
Newsweek | July 15, 2014

Spiro explains Obama’s immigration reform tactics in New York Times
The Obama administration may soon announce further efforts to move away from deporting unauthorized immigrants who have been in the country for years and have not otherwise broken the law. By shifting resources away from long-established families, law enforcement can better focus on processing recent immigrants and deporting those who do not qualify to stay in the U.S.—a rationale that the Beasley School of Law’s Peter Spiro said had long been the basis of the nation’s current immigration system. “There’s this longstanding distinction between undocumented immigrants who are inside the United States versus those who are outside trying to get in,” he said.
New York Times | July 16, 2014

TUJ’s Dujarric tells Wall Street Journal why Abe’s defense reform push is slowing
After swiftly pushing through a reinterpretation of Japan's pacifist constitution to empower its military, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has seen a significant erosion in his approval ratings, with a majority of Japanese saying they disapproved of his defense shift. "Abe spent so much political capital on collective self-defense," said Robert Dujarric, director of the Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies at Temple University, Japan Campus. "He is a little weaker now when it comes to pushing the third arrow," Dujarric added, referring to the growth strategy that is part of the prime minister's "Abenomics" policy.
Wall Street Journal | July 8, 2014

WHYY/NewsWorks covers Fox health economist’s research on effects of cigarette tax
A proposed cigarette tax hike could send millions of dollars to Philadelphia schools, and health officials predict a boon for health too. Past studies have underscored the price sensitivity of smokers: If you raise prices, the number of people who quit smoking increases too. Now, Fox School of Business health economist Andrew Sfekas and his team have studied a different health policy goal: Can price hikes keep young people from starting to smoke in the first place? Young people want to try smoking, Sfekas said, but “they don't appreciate how much it's going to cost them in the future because they don't know whether or not they will be light or heavy smokers or continue doing it at all," Sfekas said.
WHYY/NewsWorks | July 7, 2014

Middle schoolers show prowess at Temple science camp
Local middle-school students attending the College of Science and Technology’s ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp got to play NASA engineers for a day. The students worked in groups to design and build a miniature mars lander using designated household products. “Each material simulates something an engineer would use in a design and development project,” said Temple chemist Susan Jansen Varnum, who is the camp’s director. “The first thought running through our heads was that we needed a strong base and then we would need a parachute that had angles,” said seventh grader Gurleen Grewal of Burlington, N.J., a member of the winning team.
6ABC, KYW News Radio | July 10, 2014

Temple engineer explains causes of instability that could lead to a home collapse
A series of recent row home collapses in Philadelphia’s Cobbs Creek neighborhood had homeowners on alert for telltale signs that their houses might be at risk. William Miller, an associate professor of instructional, civil and environmental engineering in Temple’s College of Engineering, told KYW News Radio that the chief causes of building instability could be attributed to water damage to the foundation, a weakened facade due to missing bricks or mortar, as well as home improvements. “People try to renovate and that often leads to some unintended disturbance of the structure,” Miller said.
KYW News Radio | July 8, 2014

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