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Friday, November 17, 2017

Music in the early years 'helps children learn to listen and speak' | TES News - School news

"Findings come after Ofsted chief inspector's call for all young children to be taught nursery rhymes" insist Helen Ward, Journalist at TSL Education. 

Photo: TES News

Singing, playing and dancing with professional musicians has helped three-year-olds progress more quickly in their listening, speaking and behaviour skills, according to research.

A year-long project, involving workshops and concerts from professional musicians and training for teachers, resulted in the children involved making on average three months' more progress than expected in their speaking skills and two months' more progress in behaviour and listening skills.

The Music for Change project included weekly musician-led workshops, in which nursery children could explore and play with instruments, play music games or sing.

Training sessions helped teachers to embed music into their curriculum. The children also visited live performances in local venues – these included musical plays such as the Three Billy Goats Gruff.

Sound progress 
The project was evaluated by researchers at the UCL Institute of Education and University of Roehampton.

According to one nursery manager in the report commissioned by Creative Futures, the charity which ran the project: “Children who were shy have come out of their shell [and become] involved in a bigger group. Social and emotional development has improved.
Read more... 

Source: TES News

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Sign up for Vanderbilt’s Osher Lifelong Learning winter term | Vanderbilt University News

"African American pioneers in sports and entertainment, media in a time of fake news, and climate change and human health are among the winter classes to be offered by the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Vanderbilt in January" according to Ann Marie Deer Owens, Sr Public Affairs Officer.

Mature learners gather at a variety of locations, including The Commons Center, for academically stimulating courses offered by OLLI at Vanderbilt.
Photo: Steve Green/Vanderbilt

Other Osher classes—open to all those who are 50 and older—will focus on music and Southern culture, resources for tracing one’s family history, and Asian American literature and the impact of technological advances on identity.

In addition, lifelong learners can sign up for courses that preview the Nashville Shakespeare Festival’s winter production of Hamlet and the Nashville Children’s Theatre production of Mockingbird in February. Other courses will tackle ethical issues surrounding death, medieval Christian mystic Meister Eckhart, playing steel drums, and creative writing.

“One of our most important goals is to provide an academically stimulating curriculum with Vanderbilt faculty and other respected experts,” says Norma Clippard, program director for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Vanderbilt. “In addition, members often develop strong friendships with others who share an interest in lifelong learning.”

All classes are individually priced.

The following courses comprise the winter term: 
“Osher Steel Drum Band—Advanced,” led by Alli Puglisi, director of the Osher Advanced Steel Drum Band. A level up from the Beginning Osher Steel Band, this class moves at a fast pace and focuses on learning different styles of music. The class meets for seven Sundays, beginning Jan. 14, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Blair School of Music.

“Osher Steel Drum Band—Beginner,” led by Mat Britain, director of the Osher Beginner Steel Drum Band. No musical experience is needed to join this hands-on class, which meets for seven Sundays, beginning Jan. 14, from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at Blair.

Source: Vanderbilt University News

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Taiwan marks World Philosophy Day with marathon-style salons | Focus Taiwan News Channel

"World Philosophy Day, established by UNESCO in 2005 to promote critical and independent thought, is being celebrated in Taiwan on Thursday for the first time, attracting hundreds of people interested in brainstorming on important life issues" reports Lee Hsin-Yin.

Photo: Focus Taiwan News Channel
A two-day event comprising 16 salons that start in the afternoon and run until midnight, is being held to encourage free and continuous discussions, an area of study that has not gained the attention it deserves until recent years in Taiwan, according to the organizers, a group of intellectuals and scholars.

Claire Lin (林靜君), event coordinator and deputy head of the Philosophical Education Development Organization, told CNA that In recent years the "pursuit of reasoning" has become popular in Taiwanese society and it is timely to re-emphasize the importance of philosophy because it provides "good tools" through which people can reflect on the issues they encounter in their daily lives.

There has been more reflection on the relation between individuals and society especially since the high-profile death of Hung Chung-chiu (洪仲丘), which raised awareness of social justice.

The 24-year-old conscript died of heat exhaustion on July 4, 2013 after being forced to do strenuous exercise in a confined facility.

Hung's death raised questions about human rights violations in the military, sparked mass protests in Taiwan and led to the prosecution of several military officials and major legal reforms such as the abolition of military courts during peacetime.

Lin said that once people familiarize themselves with the study of philosophy, they are better equipped to reflect on and understand what is happening in the world around them.

Read more... 

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel

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Famous philosopher’s quotes for World Philosophy Day: ‘I think therefore I am’ | Metro

Do you know any famous philosopher's quotes? notes Avinash Bhunjun for

Today is World philosophy day
Photo: Getty
"World Philosophy Day is celebrated annually on the third Thursday of November and is a great time for us all to think a bit more deeply than usual" notes

UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) created the event and highlights the enduring value of philosophy for the development of human thought, for each culture and for each individual.

World Philosophy Day was created in 2005 and critically questions the significance of life and other topics.
The purpose of the event is to better understand the importance of this discipline, especially for young people.

Socrates (469 -399 BC) was a Classical Greek Athenian philosopher
Photo: Getty
UNESCO hopes that philosophy can be a discipline that encourages critical and independent thought and is capable of working towards a better understanding of the world and promoting tolerance and peace.

To get in the spirit of things, test how well you know your philosophers and see what quotes are you familiar with.

Source: Metro

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Thursday, November 16, 2017

Why Philosophy Matters | IAI News

"To celebrate World Philosophy Day 2017, we asked philosophers why it's important to them" summarizes IAI News Editorial Staff.

Photo: IAI News
This November marks the 12th anniversary of World Philosophy Day, a moveable feast endorsed by UNESCO and aimed at underlining the significant and often overlooked impact and value of philosophy on everyday life and human thought.

The benefits of philosophy on intellectual development have been well-documented, with a recent wide-ranging study in UK schools demonstrating that children who spent an hour each week participating in philosophical discussion, debate and reflection over the course of a year saw significant gains in maths and literacy skills, with disadvantaged students reaping the greatest benefits in terms of improvement. This of course attests to philosophy’s demonstrable social and economic ‘impact’ – a word quickly that has, quite deservedly, become anathema in humanities departments – but doesn’t speak to philosophy’s broader implications for self-reflection, confidence and reasoned deduction. At at a fundamental level, philosophy equips us with the tools to ask the questions that occur to most thinking people: Why am I here? What is it to be conscious? How can I live a good life?

At the Institute of Art and Ideas, you might not be surprised to learn that we take all of this quite seriously. It is our vision that philosophy and big ideas are an essential tool in determining what is possible; to finding new and better ways to make sense of our world.

This was why we began HowTheLightGetsIn, our annual philosophy and music festival, which will celebrate its 10th anniversary in 2018. Gathering together many of the world’s leading philosophers, scientists, politicians, activists, poets, sociologists, filmmakers, writers, and theologians, our festival has broken down the idea of philosophy as being an impenetrable and irrelevant discipline. With next year promising to be our biggest and best festival yet, we can attest firsthand to the important role of philosophical ideas in the daily lives of the public.

Source: IAI News

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World Philosophy Day 2017: political philosophy across the globe [map] | OUPblog

"The third Thursday in November marks World Philosophy Day, an event founded by UNESCO to emphasise the importance of philosophy in the development of human thought, for each culture and for each individual" inform Catherine Pugh, Marketing Assistant at Oxford University Press in Oxford, UK.

Photo: Galaxy world map by 3333873. Public domain via Pixabay.
This year, the OUP Philosophy team have decided to incorporate the Oxford Philosophy Festival theme of applying philosophy in politics to our World Philosophy Day content. If you would like to read further about this topic, visit our content hub for a curated list of online resources on the topics being covered by the speakers.
We have also put together an interactive map with some of the many fascinating political philosophers from across the globe. Find out more about different perceptions of political philosophy around the world, as well as some of the areas of overlap.

Recommended Reading

Oxford Philosophy Festival, 16th–19th November 2017 by Catherine Pugh.
"Oxford University Press and Blackwell’s are delighted to team up once again to host the Oxford Philosophy Festival to celebrate the quest for knowledge and ideas. This year, our theme centres around applying philosophy in politics."

Source: OUPblog

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Navy integrates cybersecurity to distance support program | DVIDS

"The threats of yesterday no longer remain valid in the technology-laden environment of today" continues DVIDS

Photo: Petty Officer 1st Class Chad Butler

Cyberattacks are prevalent and are one of the most serious and emerging threats facing the Navy. For this reason, Naval Surface Warfare Center, Port Hueneme Division (NSWC PHD) subject matter experts are taking steps to protect the surface fleet’s combat and weapon systems from virtual attacks by adding a cyber incident response capability to its 24/7 Watch program. 

 “Cybersecurity tension is growing more each day,” said Phong Trinh, NSWC PHD Combat System Cybersecurity engineer. “PHD’s 24/7 Watch is established to provide combat system technical assistance to the Aegis and Ship Self Defense System (SSDS) ships. PHD is in the planning phase working with the 24/7 Watch to include support to Littoral Combat Ship (LCS). The 24/7 Watch can be used to provide cybersecurity as well as combat system support, and it is the vehicle for ships to reach subject matter experts (SME) quickly.”  

Hosted by NSWC PHD, 24/7 Watch provides ships with round-the-clock access to command SMEs who cover a wide range of weapon system disciplines, provide continuous system monitoring, and conduct corrective actions when needed. This specialized form of distance support is a necessity to ensure the strength of the U.S. Navy, enabling the fleet to be combat ready at all times. 

Due to its on-call nature and access to classified networks, 24/7 Watch is an ideal platform for quickly providing combat and weapon system cybersecurity support to Sailors at sea. NSWC PHD is poised to deploy this capability, having already conducted a tabletop exercise to confirm a solid communication path between ships and their respective organizations. 

 “Anytime ships experience suspicious cybersecurity events, they contact Navy Cyber Defense Operations Command (NCDOC),” explained Trinh. “NCDOC serves as the Navy’s cyber security service provider, maintaining watch across networks, managing incidents, and mitigating potential attacks. Oftentimes, they are the first to notify a ship when they detect suspicious activities on the Navy network, and likewise, are the first notified by a ship when the crew detects a problem. The ship can also use 24/7 Watch to contact PHD to receive assistance with conducting further investigation and collecting critical information.” 

Trinh worked closely with NCDOC and key stakeholders to include 24/7 Watch as part of the cyber incident response process. Moving forward, the NSWC PHD cybersecurity team plans to conduct a more formal exercise in spring 2018 to solidify the notification process across all organizations. In addition, the team is working with LCS to identify requirements for future cyber-related support. 

NSWC PHD is a field activity of NAVSEA and provides the global United States Navy fleet with integration, test and evaluation, lifecycle logistics, and in-service engineering for today’s and future warfare systems. Located at Naval Base Ventura County, Calif., NSWC PHD employs more than 2,500 personnel. 

Source: DVIDS (press release)

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PhD: Small desks cause 'hostile' environment for fat students | Campus Reform

Photo: Toni Airaksinen
  • Heather Brown interviewed 13 fat women in college, finding that “classroom design and furniture,” especially “too-small desks,” not only make fat women feel “unwanted,” but also perpetuate “thin privilege and fat hatred.”
  •  Brown argues that colleges “must make attempts to alleviate the damage a hostile physical environment causes to fat women learners,” suggesting renovating classrooms with “differently sized chairs and tables.”

    Toni Airaksinen, New York Campus Correspondent reports, "The executive director of a research institute at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte (UNCC) recently argued that small desks cause a “hostile physical environment” to fat students."

    Photo: Campus Reform

    Heather Brown, who heads the Women and Girls Research Alliance at UNCC, published an article in the new issue of the Fat Studies journal titled “There’s always stomach on the table and I gotta write! Physical space and learning in fat college women.

    For her research, Brown interviewed 13 fat women in college, ultimately finding that “classroom design and furniture,” especially “too-small desks,” not only make fat women feel “unwanted,” but also perpetuate “thin privilege and fat hatred.”

    Kari, one student that Brown interviewed, lamented that she felt “self-conscious” in classes because of the size of the desks, saying, “I can’t help thinking about it, and then it would turn into, like,‘Maybe if I lose ten pounds then I wouldn’t look so fat in this desk…’” 

    Later, Kari told Brown that she was too distracted in her classes to focus. 

    “Sometimes, it’s just, like, ‘Do I look okay in this shirt? What if someone’s looking at me weird? What if I don’t look good in this shirt? What if this shirt makes my arms look fat?’” Kari told Brown.
    The fact that many fat students feel “fat stigma” on their campus may explain why they tend to get worse grades, Brown suggests, arguing that it “is not body weight but rather weight stigma that is a key barrier in learning.”

    Source: Campus Reform 

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    University of Edinburgh PPLS PhD Scholarships 2018-19 | The Siasat Daily

    "The University of Edinburgh’s School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences (PPLS) invites applications for PhD Scholarships 2018-19 from postgraduate students who are willing to pursue a full-time or part-time PhD program within PPLS (Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences)" inform Buddy4Study.

    Photo: Buddy4Study

    To be eligible for the scholarship, an applicant must –
    — Hold or be studying a postgraduate masters degree or equivalent in relevant discipline.
    — Be willing to pursue a PhD program in Philosophy, Psychology or Language Sciences.
    — Hold an excellent academic qualification at undergraduate level.

    Note: The applicants who are existing doctoral researchers in their first or second year of study are not eligible to apply for the award.

    Deadline: 24-11-2017

    How To Apply:
    Eligible candidates can apply for the scholarship through following steps –
    Step 1: Click here to apply for PhD in Philosophy program OR click here to apply for PhD in Psychology program OR click here to apply for PhD in Language Sciences program.
    Step 2: Fulfill all application requirements.
    Step 3: Finally, submit your application form.
    Note: There is no separate application process for scholarships. The PhD applications completed in all respect will be automatically considered for the scholarship. 

    Source: The Siasat Daily

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    Tuesday, November 14, 2017

    City PhD student recognised by Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers | City, University of London

    "The Master's Medal is directed specifically at those making their initial 'first author' published contribution to the advancement of optometry or physiological optics" inform City, University of London.

    Photo: The Master's Medal for 2017 was awarded to Deanna Taylor, of City, University of London, for her paper “Searching for Objects in Everyday Scenes: Measuring Performance in People With Dry Age-Related Macular Degeneration” – an assessment of the real life impact of dry age-related macular degeneration.

    Deanna Taylor, a PhD researcher working in the Crabb Lab at City, University of London has won a prestigious Master’s Medal prize from the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers for her research into the real life impact of dry age-related macular degeneration.

    The Master's Medal, also known as a Bronze award, and the purse of £750 is directed specifically at those making their initial 'first author' published contribution to the advancement of optometry or physiological optics. The presentation was made at an awards ceremony at Apothecaries’ Hall in London on the 4th October 2017.

    In particular, Deanna’s award was for her paper “Searching for Objects in Everyday Scenes: Measuring Performance in People With Dry Age-Related Macular Degeneration”, which highlights the difficulties that people with different severities of dry age-related macular degeneration can have with a visual search, an important everyday task. The paper can be accessed here.

    The Bronze Medals are the subject of a competition, publicised among universities, colleges and medical and optical institutions each Spring. Competition winners are invited to receive their medal at a lunch at Apothecaries' Hall, so that their work can be recognised and rewarded publicly by the Master, Wardens and Court of Assistants.

    Speaking about the award, Deanna said:

    “It is a huge honour to have received the Master’s Medal for this paper. The study has implications for management and rehabilitation of people with dry age-related macular degeneration and our methods also have the potential to be used as a meaningful ‘real-world’ outcome for clinical trials. I very much hope that this paper will lead to greater awareness and understanding of the impact of dry age-related macular degeneration on people’s day-to-day lives.”

    Read more... 

    Source: City, University of London (press release)

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