Why Do So Many Graduate Students Quit and more in the week’s news roundup

Why Do So Many Graduate Students Quit?
(The Atlantic)
With half of all doctoral students leaving graduate school without finishing, something significant and overwhelming must be happening for at least some of them during the process of obtaining that degree. Mental illness is often offered as the standard rationale to explain why some graduate students burn out. Some research has suggested a link between intelligence and conditions such as bipolar disorder, leading some observers to believe many graduate students struggle with mental-health problems that predispose them to burning out.

10 Ways to Foster Generosity in Your Students
(We Are Teachers)

Helping students feel empathy for others and respond with generosity is a trait that we as teachers can foster in our classrooms. Through volunteerism, communication strategies and in-class lessons, students can learn what an important role they can play in their communities and as global citizens. Here are some simple, fun classroom projects you can use to get the ball rolling.

Improving child-teacher interactions can reduce preschoolers’ stress levels
(Science Daily)

A school-based intervention that promotes warm and caring interactions between a teacher and child can reduce the child’s stress in the classroom, a new study has found.

Using Brain Breaks to Restore Students’ Focus
(Edutopia)
Learn about the science and classroom applicability of these quick learning activities.

Simple Ways to Help Young Kids Develop Self-Control
(Edutopia)
Here’s how you can help kids—your students and your own children—build skills that are critical for regulating their emotions and behavior.

Graduate school group seeks a framework for master’s degrees
(Inside Higher Ed)
Lots of the talk about reforming graduate education centers on the Ph.D., namely, making it more innovative and compatible with a variety of possible career paths. But the overwhelming majority of graduate degrees conferred are master’s, which tend to have the opposite problem, if it can be called a problem at all: they’ve become so diverse it’s hard to know what exactly the degree means these days.

How to Integrate Growth Mindset Messages Into Every Part of Math Class
(MindShift – KQED News)
Catherine Good has experienced stereotype threat herself, although she didn’t know it at the time. She started her academic career in pure math, expecting to get a Ph.D. But somewhere along the way she started to feel like it just wasn’t for her, even though she was doing well in all her classes. Thinking that she’d just chosen the wrong application for her love of math, Good switched to math education, where she first encountered the idea of stereotype threat from a guest psychology speaker.

What to do About Course Evaluations
(Learning Scientists)
As an instructor in higher education, this time of year brings a bit of trepidation. As a tenure-track professor at a teaching university, this time of year can make or break my future. Reading the tweets, shown in this post, made me realize that course evaluations may mean something considerably different for students than administrators, colleagues, or I realize.

How to Be a Leader of Teacher Leaders: Building an Infrastructure for Improvement
(Education Week – Subscription Required)
One day, teacher leadership will be the norm rather than the exception. I believe teacher leadership will be the means to identify and solve problems at the classroom, district, state, and national levels. However, as a passionate advocate for teacher leadership, I must concede—we’re not there yet. The infrastructure to build and support teacher leadership does not exist in many places. Roles, funding, platforms, and knowledge about teacher leadership are still missing.

Three Ways the President Can Affect Science
(JStor Daily)
What does a Trump Administration mean for scientific research? Probably the largest influence that any branch of government has over federal science is through the budget process, which is controlled by Congress. Nevertheless, the president can still exert direct influence on science. Here are three ways.

Why Students Should Take the Lead in Parent-Teacher Conferences
(KQED News)
A particularly vivid example of putting students in the driver’s seat of their own education is the way they handle what traditional schools refer to as parent-teacher conferences. At these time-honored encounters, it’s not uncommon for students to stay home while the adults discuss their progress or lack thereof. But at schools built on Deeper Learning principles, the meetings are often turned into student-led conferences, with students presenting their schoolwork, while their teachers, having helped them prepare, sit across the table, or even off to the side. The triad then sits together to review and discuss the work and the student’s progress. The message, once again, is that the students are responsible for their own success.

Inequality at school: What’s behind the racial disparity in our education system?
(The APA Monitor)
For decades, black students in the United States have lagged behind their white peers in academic achievement. In 2014, the high school graduation rate for white ­students was 87 percent, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. For black students, the rate was 73 ­percent. Test scores show a similar racial gap.

Psychology students: Seeing injustices, making them right
(The APA Monitor)
Psychology graduate students have made ­significant contributions to the lives and well-being of people who are socioeconomically disadvantaged. Here we highlight a few of the students working to change lives worldwide by supporting indigenous people, abused women and children, people who don’t have access to psychotherapy and more.

How to confront hate speech at school
(The Educator’s Playbook)
There has been a spike in racial and ethnic intimidation and harassment since the presidential election. Many of these incidents are happening at K-12 schools. Penn GSE’s Howard Stevenson offers advice for how educators can protect their students and care for themselves.

What Types of Sound Experiences Enable Children to Learn Best?
(KQED News)
Nina Kraus, a biologist at Northwestern University, has spent the better part of her professional career researching how sound affects the brain. What she’s found has important implications for how adults and children manage the sounds that envelop them. “Sound is invisible, but it’s a tremendously powerful force,” said Kraus. “For better or worse, it shapes your brain and how you learn.”

Real Parents, Real Talk About Kids And Screens
(NPR Ed)
We live in a world of screens. And in this digital age — with so many devices and distraction — it’s one of the things parents worry about most: How much time should their kids spend staring at their phones and computers? What’s the right balance between privacy and self-discovery? Research continues to provide some answers on how parents are navigating this world.

For College Students With Kids, Getting Cheap Child Care Is A Challenge
(NPR Ed)
Student parent. Ever heard that term? It’s used for a student who is also a parent, and there are nearly 5 million of them in colleges around the country. That’s over a quarter of the undergraduate population, and that number has gone up by around a million since 2011.

About the Author

Amanda Macchi, MPH
Amanda comes to APA as a recent graduate of the George Washington University’s Milken Institute School of Public Health. During her time at GW, Amanda studied global health, focusing on the challenges facing mental health in low-and middle-income countries. She received her undergraduate degree in marketing from Emerson College in Boston, Mass. In her free time, Amanda loves pyrography and collecting/learning about mid-century modern furniture.