Friday, June 8, 2012

Using short stories to present issues in higher education

I write short stories that illustrate interesting and important issues or dilemmas faced in higher education. All characters, locations, and events in my stories are fictional, but the underlying issues are very real and often quite complex.  There are no easy answers to some of the predicaments in my stories.

I develop my stories from professional experiences and current events in the world of higher education.  Anything on the higher education landscape is fair game including teaching philosophies, athletics versus academics, grade inflation, budget crises, tenure, teaching versus research, online courses, and the like.

My stories are issue based and not about any real-life persons or institutions.  I never compromise confidentiality of any official activities that I participated in during my career.

You will rarely find any villains in my stories.  My fictional characters are generally honest, competent, and motivated to do the right thing.  They are often caught in difficult circumstances beyond their control – usually the result of sociological, economic, and/or technological influences in the ever-changing world around them.  Irony and humor play a part in my stories.

I’ll give some specific examples in my next post.

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