Ask a student what my job is, and they’ll tell you I’m a teacher. Whenever I’m at a birthday party and tell people what I do, I tell them I’m a researcher at university. Students tend to see only one side of my job, but it might be a good thing to realize we often do more than just teach.
There you are. Or, there you are again. The academic year has started with a bang and gold ribbons, and the science fiesta is about to start once more.
Whoever reads this is… highly educated, or soon to be so. And if, next to your diploma, you are also gifted with ambition, chances are that at some point in your life you will be confronted with the dilemma of following your heart or following your ambitions. Intelligent people love to be challenged, but they also love intelligent people and often their true loves are -just as themselves- persons of above-average intelligence and ambition.
The twenty-five most hilarious moments on TV, the singles top fifty, the ten most poisonous snakes! You can’t turn on the TV these days without cruising past some show on rankings. And news media go with it, too. For example: last year we turned out to be the smartest region in the world; we were chosen from seven preselected regions.
My local Albert Heijn offers a selection of 16 different types of eggs. In addition to quail eggs, they offer 15 kinds of hen’s eggs, including free-range eggs, EKO-eggs, 'Happy chicken' eggs (with 2 stars out of a possible 3, which begs the question what kind of chicken would score 3 stars out of 3: ecstatic chicken?), corn eggs, four grain eggs, grass eggs, biological (!) eggs, white eggs, etcetera.
‘For faculty members, the Bachelor College means motivated students, support in the development and use of new teaching methods and techniques, more results from educational efforts, more time for student coaching and a more challenging workspace because of collaboration with colleagues from other disciplines.’
‘On any campus, there should be at least ten interesting, well used public places that attract all kinds of people.’ This concept is what PPS -the project for public spaces- calls ‘The Power of Ten’. Within each place, there should be at least ten things to do, such as eating, drinking, reading, browsing, playing games, looking at art, and so on’. (http://www.pps.org).
Psychology is becoming ever more important at TU/e. Technical systems and artifacts, be they games, cars, robots, lighting systems or buildings, are all meant for human end users eventually. It's essential to know how these users perceive, think, feel, and act. The new human-oriented program Psychology & Technology examines every technical design from a psychological perspective.
From now on, on a biweekly basis, Cursor will be taking a closer psychological look at students, teachers, labs, technical artifacts, the workplace, the scientific business, campus, education, and websites.