Pennsylvania Professors Dig In for a Long Fight

On the second day of a faculty strike at the 14 state-owned colleges, some professors and students were voicing concerns about how a prolonged walkout might affect them.


Labor & Work-Life Issues

Faculty Strike Throws Pennsylvania’s State-Owned Colleges Into ‘Organized Chaos’

Years of close calls during collective bargaining led the 14-campus system to develop contingency plans in the event of a work stoppage. The test now is how well those plans will work.



A Higher-Education Rebel With a Cause

Sarah Short, who has taught some 44,000 students over a half-century at Syracuse University, wants to see more classroom interaction.



Tenure Denials Set Off Alarm Bells, and a Book, About Obstacles for Minority Faculty

After learning about four such cases at one institution, Patricia A. Matthew couldn’t believe that leaders there had failed to see they had a problem. So she gathered essays about the experiences of minority scholars on the tenure track.


Costs of Competency-Based Programs Come Into Focus

The programs may be inexpensive to run, but they can also take longer than expected to turn a profit, according to a new study.



The Next Great Hope for Measuring Learning

Thirteen states are using a common tool to evaluate how well their students write, calculate, and think. Can this effort paint an accurate portrait of academic quality?



Universities Seek Smaller, Modernized Fleet of Research Vessels

The Obama administration has asked Congress to pay $106 million toward two new ships, although researchers say a third vessel is needed — an idea that has support in the Senate but not in the House of Representatives.



Why the College Degree Seems to Be Deciding the Presidential Election

A stark divide in voter preferences has opened between people with college diplomas and people without them. What’s going on? Here are a few issues to consider.



As Concerns Grow About Using Data to Measure Faculty, a Company Changes Its Message

Professors have expressed displeasure with Academic Analytics, a company that tracks journal articles, citations, books, and grants to account for scholarly productivity. Now Georgetown has dropped the service, arguing that it is of questionable value.


Graduate Students

With Campus Carry in Place, Some Texas Grad Students Make Bars Their Offices

Under the new law, offices can be declared gun-free only if they’re single-occupancy. That leaves out most graduate students, so some are turning to other spaces where guns remain off-limits.



How One University Closed the Gender Gap in STEM-Faculty Hiring

Some departments at Montana State University had just one female professor, or none at all. But in the last four years, half of all STEM hires have been women.



Clinton and Trump Are the Candidates of Our Dreams, Whether We Like It or Not

Kelly Bulkeley has been collecting dreams about presidential candidates for years. What do they all mean?



How One College Quelled Controversy Over a Koch-Financed Center

Western Carolina University faced a faculty rebellion over plans to use funds from the conservative Charles Koch Foundation to create a new research center on free enterprise. It found ways to render the gift agreement much easier for critics to swallow.



An Ambitious Science Hub's New Leader Explains Its Bid to Find All Cures

Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, the pediatrician Priscilla Chan, have invested $600 million in a new lab space for universities in the Bay Area. The Chronicle talks to one of its directors.



The Accidental Ethicist

Marc Edwards, the hero scientist of Flint, Mich., has become a standard-bearer for watchdog scholarship. So why does he feel haunted?


Graduate Students

NYU’s Grad-Student Union Succeeded. Cornell’s Flopped. Why?

Comparing a pair of grad-union votes from more than a decade ago can provide valuable context for the collective-bargaining fights expected this year.



Big Money Comes to Inequality Research

Amid anxieties over growing disparities, donors and foundations are devoting serious amounts to studies of rich and poor.



How Skin-Deep Judgments of Professors Might Influence Student Success

A scholar at UNLV has been examining whether students actually might learn more if their instructor is attractive. For those hoping that brains are all that counts in academe, the picture he paints isn’t pretty.


Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Pledges $3 Billion for Science Research

The Facebook co-founder and his physician wife draw praise from Bill Gates, among others, as they outlined plans to tackle big goals and fund research that other grant makers consider too risky.


Labor & Work-Life Issues

Lessons From Long Island U.’s Faculty Lockout

Experts on labor negotiations say other colleges might want to think twice before replacing instructors to pre-empt a faculty strike.



Illinois’s Regional Public Colleges Report Strained Conditions Amid Sliding Enrollment

Both faculty members and administrators cite the state’s continuing budget standoff as the primary culprit for the drop in students.


Graduate Students

Stresses on Doctoral Programs May Be Taking a Toll on Applications, Data Suggest

A survey by the Council of Graduate Schools found a 4.3-percent decrease in applications from 2014 to 2015. Whether that represents a blip or a trend remains to be seen.



What It Will Take for Missouri to Meet Its Faculty-Diversity Goal

The university, rocked by campus protests last year, has unveiled an ambitious multimillion-dollar plan. Experts say the follow-through will be as important as the rollout.



Professors Are Nerds. Or So Your iPhone Would Have You Believe.

The new Apple update links professors with the "nerd face" emoji. Some professors are taking that association in stride.



Newly Named Species Find Their 15 Minutes of Fame. Thanks, Obama.

A handful of researchers have named their recent discoveries for the president. With that decision comes publicity and, for some, regret.



As Long Island U.’s Faculty Lockout Nears 2 Weeks, Both Sides Dig In

The university’s Brooklyn campus locked out hundreds of faculty members in anticipation of a strike. Some professors say the administration will have a hard time regaining their trust.



Farm Scientists See Ripening Opportunity for Greater Federal Support

Agricultural researchers — and the companies that support them — say it's time for Congress to boost its investment in their work.



How to Do a Better Job of Searching for Diversity

In the often subjective faculty-search process, some colleges are taking new steps to bring a wider spectrum of candidates to the table.