Category Archives: Technology

Tech trends on campus.

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‘Harvard Crimson’ Site Is Hacked to Take Jabs at Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg

On the same day that students at Harvard University were set to graduate and hear a commencement speech by Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, someone altered the home page of The Harvard Crimson to poke fun at Mr. Zuckerberg, who famously dropped out of the university to focus on the budding social-media giant.

“Op-Ed: I did not steal Fakebook [expletive] I mean Facebook I invented it in my brain by Mick Zollywop,” read one headline in a series of images making the rounds on social media.

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Attempt to Get Trump’s Tax Returns May Have Alerted IRS to Data Tool’s Vulnerability

Do the security concerns that caused the Internal Revenue Service to shut down an online tool that’s key to applying for student aid stem from a private investigator’s attempt to use the tool to get President Trump’s tax records?

That question is raised in an article by the newsmagazine Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, which reports that it has obtained court records that identify a Louisiana-based private investigator who is accused of using the data-retrieval tool for that purpose in Septe…

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U. of Wisconsin at Madison Restores Twitter Account After Hack

The University of Wisconsin at Madison’s Twitter account, @UWMadison, was hacked early Wednesday morning and published some bizarre tweets before the university regained control of it, according to a university news release.

Around 6:30 a.m., Central time, the account started tweeting messages like: “lol why go to university when u can just sit at home and fail at life and stuff.” Four rogue messages, including a link to a music video, were tweeted from the account within minutes of one another.

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Watch These Children Steal an Academic’s Spotlight in BBC Interview

Working from home just got a bit tougher for one academic as he faced a new kind of higher-ed disruption.

Robert E. Kelly, an associate professor of international relations at Pusan National University, in South Korea, had to put in a little extra work while he was interviewed live on BBC World News.

This video of his interview shows a little girl wandering into the room as Mr. Kelly is speaking into the camera. After Mr. Kelly pushes her away, a baby in a walker wheels into the room as well. …

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Cost of Online Education May Be Higher Than We Think, Study Suggests

A study of the earnings of nearly every person who took postsecondary courses online between 1999 and 2014 finds little evidence that online education saves students or taxpayers money.

While it is often thought that online education saves money, as it requires relatively fewer resources than learning in-person on a campus, a working paper published by Caroline M. Hoxby, a professor of economics at Stanford University, has challenged this view, finding “little support for optimistic prognosticat…

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U. of Michigan Says Racist Emails, Purportedly From Professor, Were Forged

Racist and anti-Semitic emails sent to students at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor on Tuesday, purportedly from a computer-science professor, are forgeries, the Associated Press reports.

The forged emails appeared to come from J. Alex Halderman, a computer-security and privacy expert, and a vocal advocate of recounts in several states following the election of President Trump. According to the AP, it is unknown whether Mr. Halderman was a target as a result of his advocacy.

In response t…

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Education Dept. Clarifies Rule Governing Online Courses

The Education Department on Thursday clarified a key piece of a new distance-education regulation, making it clearer that the reciprocity agreement known as SARA, under which more than 1,300 colleges have already been approved to offer online courses across state lines, would satisfy the new regulation.

The clarification removes the question mark over the legality of those colleges’ programs.

In a blog post about the department’s action, Russell Poulin, director of policy and analysis at the WI…

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Twitter Campaign Urges Betsy DeVos to Make Title IX a Priority

Activists and college students are using Twitter to urge Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald J. Trump’s nominee for education secretary, to make priorities of combating sexual assault and enforcing Title IX policy.

Ms. DeVos’s confirmation hearing is scheduled for Wednesday, January 11.

Although Ms. DeVos hasn’t shared much of her plans for higher education and her background is mainly in elementary and secondary education, the activists and students fear she may change Title IX policies.

End Ra…

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Twin Surprises at Suffolk U.: an Extra Paycheck and a Demand to Return It

[Updated (1/6/2017, 4:28 p.m.) with a statement from the university.]

Some employees at Suffolk University were surprised on Thursday to see an extra paycheck in their bank accounts, The Boston Globe reports, and still more surprised over the university’s insistence that they return the money.

In an internal email obtained by the Globe, the Massachusetts college said that a vendor had mistakenly deposited the funds during a test of a new payroll system. When faculty members saw the unexpected nu…

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Drexel Calls Professor’s Controversial Tweets Protected Speech

Drexel University on Thursday called a professor’s controversial social-media remarks “protected speech,” after the professor sparked an uproar online by tweeting that “all I want for Christmas is white genocide.”

George Ciccariello-Maher, an associate professor of politics and global studies, drew harsh criticism over the tweet, which he posted on Christmas Eve. He followed up the post with another that stated, “To clarify: When the whites were massacred during the Haitian revolution, that wa…