January 2011

Health Communication in the Age of Pamphlets

Although social media is all around us, there is a tendency to forget that it is still new and, in the case of public health, very new. What would / did our health communications system look like if it was designed for pamphlets instead of apps, door-to-door visits instead of Facebook, and libraries instead of websites? It might look a lot like today.

Complexity and Child-Rearing: Why Amy Chua is Neither Right or Wrong

Science strives for precision and finding the right or at least the best answers to questions. The science of complexity means shifting our thinking from right answers to appropriate ones and what is best to good. The recent debate over parenting (particularly among Chinese families) illustrates how framing the issue and the outcomes makes a big difference. Is Amy Chua’s method of parenting successful or not, supportive or harmful, right or wrong? The answer is yes.

The Problem With Grades

Imagine a system where we gave students feedback, allowed them to adapt, and to take the information they learn and apply it in ways that fit the context they are working in? Consider what that might look like in terms of grades and grading and how the absence of such almost arbitrary assessments could lead to knowledge that could truly advance the health and wellbeing of everyone, not just propose to do so.

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