SSH news

SSH News: hitchBOT completes its journey, World University rankings, Vanier and Banting recipients announced


hitchBOT completes its journey

hitchBOT the hitchhiking robot, created by communication professors David Smith (McMaster) and Frauke Zeller (Ryerson), has completed its journey from Halifax to Victoria. We took the opportunity to speak to the professors about the influence of the humanities and social sciences in the hitchBOT project. Blog post and full interview can be found...

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SSH News: PSE funding in Ontario and Quebec, the value of SSH in science education, and SSH research in media


This week in SSH News, Ontario and Québec are both looking towards a more specialized, targeted funding model for institutions of public secondary education. In Ontario, the government unveiled a plan detailing a new funding strategy for universities and colleges, which will force each institution to pick areas of focus and accept that it cannot have it all. The Globe and Mail writes that “[t]he deals are a crucial step in the province’s plan to tailor the postsecondary system more closely to the economy, and save public money by avoiding duplication.”

In Québec, Minister of Education, Recreation and Sport, Yves Bolduc,...

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SSH News: Fables and moral lessons, rap and racism in Québec, and the Ivy League debate reaches Canada


This week in SSH News, children’s stories and fables are the subject of research. At the University of Toronto, psychologist Kang Lee put three well-known tales that involve a main character lying to the test when he asked, do they actually teach children not to lie? The moral of his research, perhaps most useful to parents, teachers, and anyone trying to teach children a lesson about honesty, is that it actually depends on how the consequences of lying are presented.

Meanwhile, researchers in Australia have developed a...

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SSH News: Public intellectuals, open access & high APCs, and a hitchhiking robot

Have academics lost the arts of rhetoric and public engagement? Is engaging the public a part of their mandate at all? These questions were implicitly raised in essayist Scott McLemee’s overview of communication professor Anna M. Young’s book Prophets, Gurus, and Pundits: Rhetorical Styles and Public Engagement, which examines different types of public intellectuals. McLemee’s tongue-in-cheek piece, which promises to be part of a series, has not provided answers one way or another, but simply raising these questions is sure to pull in strong opinions from academics across the spectrum.

One such opinion comes from Tim Hitchcock, Professor of Digital History at the...

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SSH News: Financial aid, health care policy, and Canada-Quebec relations

This week, student financial aid made headlines in Canada and the UK, for different reasons. The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives published a report on July 17th comparing student eligibility for financial aid and the complexity of application processes across provinces. Discussing highlights from the report, with a focus on Ontario, the Toronto Star writes that, in addition to confusing students and their parents, current financial aid systems “do little to guarantee equity among students.”

Financial aid is also causing worries in the UK,...

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SSH News: Global University Ranking, World Congress of Political Science

This week, a new global ranking was released that measured the quality of 1,000 universities. Thirty-two Canadian universities made the list -- see which ones here!

This weekend marks the start to the 23rd World Congress of Political Science in Montréal (Québec). Political scientists are often seen not merely as analysts of political matters, but as something akin to engineers sculpting the organisation of power. Globalisation has profoundly altered the work of political scientists, intensifying communication and exchange on issues pertaining to the way in which communities, societies, nations...

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SSH News: Congress 2014 highlights, Skills for the Future, Humanités numériques 2015

This week, the Federation released a short publication featuring the many highlights from this year’s Congress at Brock University. Be sure to check it out online in either English or French!

Also this week, Skills for the Future was hosted by provincial and territorial education and labour market ministers in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. This joint symposium aimed at bringing together government, business, labour, academic leaders, and student groups to address the...

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SSH News: Reported earnings by degree, SSH research matters, Ideas can… bubbles, Digital Humanities 2014 conference

Two contradicting articles this week report on the earnings of humanities and social sciences graduates. On one hand, the Globe and Mail reports positively that BA grads have better pay, more career options while Maclean’s magazine suggests that a graduate survey shows stark differences in salaries where humanities graduates earn the least, and even hints at the “underemployment” among these graduates.

Notwithstanding, in a newly-published piece this week in ...

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SSH News: ASPP and liberal arts degrees in the news

The Awards to Scholarly Publications Program (ASPP) is a competitive funding program designed to assist with the publication of scholarly books on topics in the humanities and social sciences. Through this program, the Federation tangibly supports research dissemination and encourages excellence in humanities and social science scholarship. This week, the Federation is delighted to congratulate two ASPP-supported authors on their celebrated works:

  • Willie Jenkins for the ACIS James S. Donnelly, Sr. Prize for Books on History and Social Sciences and the Ontario Historical Society Prize for his book, ...

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SSH News: Big Thinking at Congress, Genomics and Feeding the Future, Status of the humanities

Couldn't make it all the way out to St. Catharines this year? Didn't get a chance to catch every Big Thinking speaker while at Congress? Don't fret! We have high quality videos of each lecture available for viewing online. In addition to watching the videos, be sure to read the Congress blog for more Big Thinking highlights including Lise Bissonnette's thought-provoking talk on "servitude and grandeur of the university" (available only in French).

In most recent news, Genome Canada, in collaboration...

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