Book Reviews

Book Reviews

Exploring the Opportunities and Challenges of College Students

Exploring the Opportunities and Challenges of College Students, a book of edited chapters by Seungyeon Lee (2020), is a delightful volume, and allow me to tell you why. It is wonderfully diverse from several different perspectives. The broad topics that you expect to find in a volume about college student success are here, but there are also niche topics that many readers will find innovative. There are chapters about college student mental health, resiliency, achievement, career decision-making, procrastination, motivation, parental influence (including overparenting), substance use, and relationships – all topics that education professionals need to understand about college students. I also appreciated chapter authors who took a deeper dive into narrow topics – like the sophomore slump, how the campus physical environment exerts its own “ambient power,” the benefits to forming a book club for students, how college students struggle spelling difficult words, how on-campus animal-assisted activities influence final exam scores, and how students process grieving when a loved one dies during their college experience. This volume gives you the best of perspectives — the macro and the micro – and the chapters are expertly assembled. I also noticed and appreciated the diversity of methodological approaches used across the chapters. Some of the chapters serve as expert review chapters/updates on a particular topic, other chapters provide the literature review feature and also present new empirical data—quantitative, qualitative, case study, and mixed method approaches were utilized when new data were shared. When you have been in higher education as long as I have (32 years as I write this), there are times when you read a journal article or a book chapter and you are just as impressed by the curated reference citation list as you are by the prose of the text. That was true in many instances in reading this book, particularly for Chapters 5, 7, 13, and 15 – I’m not going to tell you the topics of those chapters in hopes of tempting you further to read the book. Let me also mention another feature of this book I really liked – every chapter has an abstract. I wish all edited books had an abstract or synopsis at the beginning of the chapter – I found that very useful. If you care about college students, you need to read this book. It will provide you with insights about the key areas surrounding college student success and stimulate new ideas about perspectives you may not have considered previously. Seventeen sets of chapter authors have provided you with up-to-date citations and conclusions in areas of importance. I am a fan of the “one good idea” (OGI) approach; that is, if I come away with truly one good idea from a conference, a journal article, a book – then that is a success because truly good ideas are hard to come by (in my opinion). So as I am reading Chapter 2 by Natalie Burick and Crystal Machado, not only do they report on the existing research on the “sophomore slump,” but they also conduct a qualitative study to better understand this phenomenon. They offer specific recommendations for sophomore student success based on the results of their study (presented on p. 29) – I’ve never this type of detailed, excellent recommendations before to specifically counter the sophomore slump. For me (at the very least) that’s my one good idea that I will take away from reading this edited book. What will be yours?”
R. Eric Landrum, PhD
Professor and Chair
Department of Psychological Science
Boise State University, Boise, ID

Science Teaching and Learning: Practices, Implementation and Challenges

"The organizations, corporations, and countries that can acquire human talent in various science disciplines may attain competitive advantages over others. They may contribute to the solving of hard problems. They may create monetizable products and services related to innovations. They may cobble capabilities that others may not. Science is a superpower that may be deployed to solve mass-scale challenges and meet the needs of society (and humanity). How to develop science knowledge and skills becomes an important question. Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education, in combination with other academic learning, is critical to societal advancement and the well-being of citizenry. Paul J. Hendricks, editor of Science Teaching and Learning: Practices, Implementation and Challenges, focuses on some effective practices for science teaching and learning from K12 through higher education. This book contributes some strong cues for improvement of science teaching and didactics in its five chapters. The respective researchers who contributed to this collection maintained high standards in their work and documented their ideas closely...READ MORE"
Shalin Hai-Jew for C2C Digital Magazine (Fall 2020/Winter 2021)
Instructional Designer/Researcher
Kansas State University

Contextualizing Teaching to Improve Learning: The Case of Science and Geography

"Laurinda Leite, Luís Dourado, Ana S. Afonso, and Sofia Morgado’s Contextualizing Teaching to Improve Learning: The Case of Science and Geography makes the case for people integrating science knowledge, skills, and abilities into their daily lives as citizens and individuals. In the Foreword, Derek Hodson points to large-scale hard problems being faced by humanity: “deforestation and increasing desertification, acid rain, pollution of waterways, ozone depletion, climate change, soil loss, loss of biodiversity, exhaustion of many natural resources, explosive population growth” and societal disparities “in terms of income, access to proper housing, food and water security, educational opportunity, health care, freedom, justice and safety” (2017, p. vii). Together, these issues are referred to as Socio-Scientific Issues (SSI), and the idea is that area issues in one cannot be solved without the other. This edited collection makes a solid case for contextualizing science learning in a way that learners can see the relevance in their own daily lives and can apply the learning to their citizenship behaviors...READ MORE"
Shalin Hai-Jew for C2C Digital Magazine (Fall 2020/Winter 2021)
Instructional Designer/Researcher
Kansas State University

The Double Moon Drawing: An Instrument for Intervention and Research in Structurally Complex Family Situations

“I am delighted to endorse the publication of this book. The Double Moon Drawing (DMD) can be used in both clinical and research settings, facilitating the exploration and understanding of family boundaries and sense of belonging in structurally complex families. In particular, this symbolic-graphic tool allows the exploration of “absence”,  addressing how the subject deals with the loss or distancing of emotionally significant people. I have personally used the DMD, finding it a powerful and intuitive instrument, able to facilitate the participation of children and parents in the meaning-making process prompted by the clinician. Finally, the manuscript presents numerous clinical applications, which make it an invaluable resource for professionals working in the field of mental health. I strongly endorse the publication of this book, as I am confident it will make the application of the DMD more accessible and clinically sound.”
Tanya Lecchi, PhD
Anna Freud Centre
Kantor Centre of Excellence
London, England

How to Take Your Course Fully Online

“In this information age, the book “How To Take Your Course Fully Online” is a timely project having online-learning/E-learning as the central focal theme. It is a well-researched and a way-forward project in this given theme. It introduces ‘essential ingredients to instructional designers and a guide to unfamiliar learners’ and evolve with an effective and qualitative online teaching-learning methodologies. Having this aim in view, it proposes a stepwise online course structure projecting learning outcomes, learning resources and learning activities to make the course a more student-centric, self-directed and engaging than ever before by successfully transcending tempo-spatial gap and getting out of the traditional teaching-learning methods. This process is facilitated by identifying different learners’ type and impediments in existing online course design and to come up with an innovative Universal design for learning style (UDL) designing to execute ‘what, how and why of learning’ via course design, module development, module implementation, analysing and evaluating the module outcome. This is a must-read book for online course designers, content writers, researchers, practitioners and policy formulators across the globe. I strongly recommend this book to all the readers.”
Dr. Asmita Bhattacharyya, PhD (JU), JRF-SRF (ISI, Kol.), MPhil (JU), M.A(JNU, New Delhi), Fulbright-Nehru Awardee-2020-2021
Department of Sociology
Vidyasagar University
Midnapore INDIA

“The textbook entitled “How to Take Your Course Fully Online” is a textbook that we have been waiting for all over the years. Such a book is great because these days, the following advantages are welcoming:
• Flexible schedule and environment
• Career advancement and hobbies
• Lower costs and debts
• Self-discipline and responsibility
To be honest, this textbook teaches the instructor how to make a professional online course, and how to disseminate the information in a professional fashion. I do approve this textbook for all academics and even high school teachers who lecture and teach STEM subjects. Other disciplines do need to utilise this textbook.”
Alvin Holder, Ph.D., FRSC, CChem
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Old Dominion University
4541 Hampton Boulevard
Norfolk, VA, U.S.A.

Science and Mathematics Education for 21st Century Citizens: Challenges and Ways Forward

"Laurinda Leite, Elizabeth Oldham, Ana S. Afonso, Floriano Viseu, Luĩs Dourado, and Maria Helena Martinho’s edited collection Science and Mathematics Education for 21st Century Citizens: Challenges and Ways Forward strives to offer ways forward to developing human capital by advancing science and math knowledge. This is for the few who will innovate and contribute fundamentally to the betterment of human life. This is for the general populations who can align behind science for improved human health and a healthier and more sustainable environment. This collection was inspired during the 2019 Association for Teacher Education in Europe Winter Conference. A short year later, this collection offers educational programs for teachers, research, new pedagogical models and methods, and ways to build the capabilities of people and infrastructures for new generations...This book introduces programs (global, national, and local) that may help move humanity forward to meeting the challenges of the near-future, which is fast approaching. Humanity will need people with solid science rigor in all dimensions; they will need people who are creative, collaborative, conscientious and woke... READ MORE"
Shalin Hai-Jew for C2C Digital Magazine (Spring/Summer 2021)
Instructional Designer
Kansas State University

This book could not have been published at a more opportune time. Given the pandemic of 2020 and the constant barrage of statistics and mixed messages from politicians who tell us they have been ‘guided by the science’; this collection of 19 wide-ranging, excellent chapters offers the kind of critical analysis that the public now crave. It truly is a book for citizens of our newly-changed 21st century.”
Jerry Wellington
University of Sheffield, UK

“This stimulating book guides the reader through a wide range of important problem areas such as innovative approaches to teaching science and mathematics, inclusive schools, interdisciplinary approaches with technology, the STEM agenda or new ways of students´ assessment.”
António Cachapuz
Aveiro University, Portugal

This book is very exciting and breathtaking for science and mathematics educators because it covers all the new developments of the 21st century together. Especially taking into account teachers’ emotions in the teaching has brought a new sense to science teaching books. Innovative strategies for science teaching has excited me and I think it will be very helpful for educators.”
Neslihan Ültay
Giresun University, Turkey

“Multiple pathways are examined to address a wide range of pressing challenges that impinge specifically on Science and Mathematics Education. These challenges for 21st century education are comprehensively addressed throughout this book. Authors have identified and provide approaches, offering innovative and inclusive strategies that respond to the needs of a rapidly changing world.”
Christine Redman
University of Melbourne, Australia

This book may lead teachers to develop new strategies for teaching mathematics and science and learners to become scientific thinkers, which is one of the most important challenges for the future.”
Davide Parmigiani, University of Genoa, Italy;
President of the Association for Teacher Education in Europe

This book presents a lively and exciting collection of research and practice for science and mathematics educators at all levels! I found it fascinating, particularly the passion of many of the authors coming through in the chapters. Inclusion of primary science and mathematics is another delight, omitted in many similar texts. I learned a lot, and thoroughly enjoyed reading this book!”
Colette Murphy
Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin, Ireland

Intersectionality: Concepts, Perspectives and Challenges

"For a democracy to thrive in a pluralistic society, the pathways to opportunities should be open to all equally, with level playing fields and mitigations against stereotyping and exclusion. This should especially be so in institutions of higher education, which can be the differences not only for individual lives but for societies as a whole. There are benefits to including creative and divergent thinkers and doers. One step in this direction is to better understand social relationships in society, including problem areas that may need attention. Thomas Moeller’s Intersectionality: Concepts, Perspectives and Challenges (2020) is comprised of three works surround the issue of “intersectionality,” as a way of understanding people’s complex identities and embodied experiences and their social statuses (or its lack) in contemporary societies.  As a term, “intersectionality” is a highly contested one. Intersectionality, as a framework, refers to “how aspects of one’s social and political identities (e.g., gender, race, class, sexuality, disability, etc.) might combine to create unique modes of discrimination” (“Intersectionality,” Feb. 15, 2020); the insights from this approach are used to help address combined discriminatory injustices, given the real-world complexities of human interrelationships...Humans are complex beings, and triply so with the overlays of socialization and cultural dimensions. Social identities are constantly evolving along with societies, and engaging these with empirical knowledge can be powerful in building more equitable and just and inclusive societies, for the benefit of all...READ MORE"
Shalin Hai-Jew for C2C Digital Magazine (Spring/Summer 2020)
Instructional Designer
Kansas State University

Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Music Education

"The chapters form a unified whole, making the monograph of interest to both experts in the field of music education; students; as well as experts from many other areas (visual art, poetry, movement, language, dance, sciences and history). The most prominent feature of the monograph is interdisciplinarity and a link between science and art, which is particularly welcome to everyone who wants to go beyond the established deliminations of individual scientific disciplines or artistic (musical) fields."
Dr. Marija Javornik Krečič
Associate Professor of Didactics at UM

"Based on specified various approaches and ideas of the contemporary field of interdisciplinarity in the context of music education, scientific publication the Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Music Education represents an important contribution to the existing knowledge in this field. The authors have approached this issue through original research ideas and considered this phenomenon from different points-of-view. Accordingly, collecting various perspective attitudes, beliefs and new and authentic research methods, the obtained results revealed special scientific value of this work, that will be of interest to the target scientific audience in the artistic and other fields as well."
Blaženka Bačljija Sušić
University of Zagreb

"The book, scientific monograph, Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Music Education points to diversity and fusion in integrating different subjects with music in music education. It is of interest to the wider population (teachers, music teachers, students who touch music in their faculty programmes)."
Ivana Paula Gortan-Carlin
Juraj Dobrila University of Pula
Faculty of Educational Sciences
Croatia

Ethics in Higher Education

"Professions have rules and guidelines that define the standards of practice. It is the responsibility of programs in higher education that prepare persons for the professions to imbue the profession’s standards and to assure that those standards have been learned and practiced. While most books on ethics in the Academy are of a general nature, Ethics in Higher Education focuses on professional preparation in the fields of education and Speech-Language Pathology. The book's editors and chapter authors provide literature reviews and practices that offer a general discussion of ethics in teacher preparation programs and for clinical practitioners in the Speech-Language Pathology professions. Taken as a whole, the book’s content gives a good overview of ethics standards detailed by professional associations and accrediting bodies in general and in the areas of teacher education and Speech-Language Pathology preparation. In addition, comprehensive documentation of research related to standards and practices in preparing practitioners in these areas is provided. Suggestions for additional or improved preparation practices supported by research (e.g., best practices) are offered. The topic of ethics and ethical practice is particularly relevant in today’s political context. We are trying to address a history of racism and other ethical issues, including those related to the management of a pandemic. These circumstances make it all the more important for professionals to practice in an ethical manner that recognizes the needs of all individuals. The comprehensive literature reviews in each chapter in the book can inform our understanding of today’s ethical challenges in the preparation of professionals and strategies for addressing them. Three chapters in particular speak more directly to the need to educate the next generation of practitioners in sound ethical practices. These chapters focus on academic honesty (chapter 2), cultural competence in teaching diverse students (chapter 4), and strategies for addressing students’ diverse learning needs (chapter 5). All chapters provide recommendations for strategies to use in teaching ethical practices. There are several audiences for this book. These include Education and Speech-Language Pathology doctoral students preparing to teach in higher education settings, current faculty in higher education, and administrators in higher education who are responsible for overseeing preparation programs. The book makes a compelling case for improving both the programs that prepare professionals and the development of faculty responsible for the preparation."
David S. Hill, Ed.D.
Faculty Emeritus
SUNY College at Plattsburgh

The Next Big Thing in Education

The world changes dramatically right in front of our eyes in almost any way possible. As we witness these dramatic events we may ask ourselves - "what's next?". That is exactly the question we posed to leading experts, academicians, leaders, and practitioners in the field of education. And they answered. The result is this book - a collection of ideas, directions for future thought and action, from some of the leading minds in education. Contributions to this book come from various disciplines, different countries and cultures, and take varying perspectives on the seemingly simple question asked "what, in your opinion, is the next big thing in education?". Authors noted opportunities and challenges, had words of caution as well as advice and encouragement. This book may be of interest to educational researchers, policy-makers, administrators practitioners as well as students of teaching, pedagogy and education. Readers are invited to peruse the leaves of this anthology, and gain insight, new ideas, identify trends in the making and perhaps gain a tiny glimpse of the future of things to come.