Higher Ed

In their lively and entertaining weekly discussion of issues related to higher education, KUT’s Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger explore the topics of higher education, lifelong learning, and exercising the brain. Ed and Jennifer practice what they preach, too, by introducing math puzzlers and brain teasers to keep listeners on their toes.

Hurricane Harvey hit Texas in August, schools along the coast and in Houston were closed for weeks. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss how students, teachers, and schools can rebound when their school year is disrupted.


Some alumni just love the schools they attended and cannot wait to go back for Homecoming and Reunion. Other alumni say "good riddance" as soon as they get their diploma and never want to hear from their schools again. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss what keeps alumni connected to their schools and how social media has impacted that relationship.


Miguel Gutierrez Jr./KUT News

The cost of college continues to creep higher and higher – and financial aid isn’t keeping up.

More Texans are receiving those hefty student loan bills in the mail after graduation, but is college still worth the investment?

Nonprofit online college WGU Texas took the temperature of how Texans are feeling about the state of higher education in their annual poll, which you can read here.

Josh Blank of Strategic Research Associates conducted the study, and he says most Texans are still on board with higher ed.

Empathy. Sympathy. We probably think we know what those words really mean, but in truth they are often confused or misunderstood. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger take a closer look at both and how they relate to learning.


A listener wrote in to "Higher Ed" about his decision to pursue a Ph.D. in pure mathematics after studying classical piano performance and working as a pianist. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss becoming a mathematician later in life and the joys and challenges of making a career shift.


Getting back into the swing of school is always an adjustment. Alarm clocks, long days and homework make the school year schedule fuller and more structured than summertime. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger talk about some ways to get the school year off to a smooth start and get the most out of it. They also respond to some listener comments about "Higher Ed" that came in over the summer.


This episode was originally published on April 23, 2017.

This episode addresses a question from a "Higher Ed" listener whose daughter is a sophomore in high school. The daughter has started attending college fairs and reading online about schools, and the family wants to know about the impact of studying abroad on a student's education. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger dig into the topic of studying abroad.


This episode was originally published on April 9, 2017.

College students who work hard might tend to play hard, too. School can be filled with temptations that keep students from leading healthy lives: caffeine, junk food, late nights, partying. We know those habits aren't good for us, but why does school present so many temptations? In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss balancing work and learning with health during school (and beyond).


This episode was originally published on Feb. 5, 2017.

This might be a familiar scene to you: You're walking down the street and see someone heading toward you, not looking up, face firmly transfixed on the small screen of a smartphone or tablet. What does all that time spent attending to devices do to our personal interactions, conversations and learning? In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger look at the personal and educational implications.


This episode was originally published on Dec. 11, 2016.

We all face questions in life that seem just about impossible to answer. Maybe it's a really tough question on a test. Or maybe it's a challenging assignment at work. What can we do when the answer just won't come to us? How about not answering the question? In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger explore ways to break down seemingly impossible questions into manageable parts.


This episode was originally published on Nov. 20, 2016.

Was there a subject in school that seemed so hard and unsatisfying to study that even to this day the thought of it makes you cringe? For many students, that subject was math. And perhaps more specifically, calculus. Maybe it was the confusing terminology or seemingly abstract concepts. Can calculus ever redeem itself? Is it ever useful? On this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger give calculus a second chance.


This episode was originally published on Oct. 20, 2016.

It's good manners to say "thank you" and show gratitude. But there are also ways that slowing down to notice and appreciate what's happening around us can give our brains some much needed rest. In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss the impact of showing gratitude and appreciation on learning.


This episode was originally published on Oct. 23, 2016.

Most dictionary definitions of "learn" make reference to acquiring knowledge or skills, becoming informed or finding out something. Sure, that makes sense, but what does it really mean to learn something? How do we know if we've actually learned it? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss what learning does and doesn't mean.


This episode was originally posted on Oct. 16, 2016.

How can educators, parents and other adults encourage young people to be curious and get creative? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger respond to a listener's question about promoting intellectual curiosity and confidence in kids.


This episode was originally published on Oct. 9, 2016.

What do you think of when someone is described as "smart"? They know a lot of things. Maybe they got high grades in school. Or maybe they always use correct grammar. But what does it actually mean to be smart? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss the deeper meaning of the word "smart."


In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger tackle a question posed by a listener about teaching giving and philanthropy in school. Can it be done? Should it be done? And if so, when?


So much of what we encounter in formal education is planned; we attend scheduled classes in designated classrooms and go through specific lessons plans. But there can also be real educational value in chance encounters or unexpected opportunities. In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss lessons learned on the fly.


What factors show that a student is ready for college? Good grades? High test scores? A killer application and essay? Or, are more intangible qualities better indicators of college success? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss what makes a high school student ready for higher ed.


"Goodbye." It's a word that actually gets said a lot in education. Students are constantly changing teachers, classmates, subjects and locations during their years in school. In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger talk about saying goodbye and moving on in education.


It is college commencement season, and graduating seniors will be hearing all kinds of sage advice from commencement speakers. But what advice would those graduating seniors give? What would they tell their younger selves as students if they could? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger share what some seniors say they wish they had known when they started school.


Teachers. We've all had some great ones, and we've all had some teachers who didn't rank among the best. What makes a good teacher? How has the profession changed over time? How has technology impacted the way teachers do their jobs? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger talk about the evolving role of teachers.


Usually during the Higher Ed podcastKUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss issues related to learning and education. How does it turn out when they add another voice to the mix? In this episode, they are joined by second-year Southwestern University student Tristin Evans. She adds a student perspective to the discussion and talks about what it was like to move from being a student to being a teacher's assistant in one of Dr. Burger's classes.


"Job well done." What does that mean, exactly? That someone got a lot accomplished or that someone did a few things very well? Multitasking is often praised as a valuable skill, but what are we sacrificing for speed? In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger work their way through a discussion on quantity and quality when it comes to getting stuff done.


Note: This "Higher Ed" episode was originally posted on Feb. 28, 2016.

In an ideal world, every student comes to class, or to any educational situation, well-prepared and ready to learn. But in reality, all kinds of life circumstances outside the classroom - such as poverty - can influence what happens inside the classroom. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger talk about how those factors impact students' experiences.


A bill has been introduced in the California state Legislature that would add elements to school curricula to teach students to "judge the credibility and quality of information found on Internet Web sites, including social media." We think we know fake news when we see it, right? Well, maybe not always.

In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger answer a listener's question about the role of formal education in teaching about "fake news."


In a recent episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger used the phrase "hurt yourself intellectually." Doesn't sound like a great idea, does it? In this episode,  KUT's Jennifer Stayton talks with Ed about the phrase means in relation to our learning and education, and why a little intellectual "hurt" might not actually be the worst thing - as long as it's done with awareness.


A popular topic for discussion on the "Higher Ed" podcast is lifelong learning: taking on educational opportunities at any stage of life, especially well after the formal education years are past. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger talk about what we can all learn from Jennifer's venture back into the classroom - after many decades out - and her own pursuit of lifelong learning.


It's a major milestone in our educational development: learning to read. Throughout school, we read books for classes and assignments and also just for fun. But what happens once we're out of school? Do we still enjoy curling up with a good book? In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Dr. Ed Burger explore our relationship with reading and books.


Every once in a while it makes sense to take a step or two back and look at the "big picture" of anything. You know: How are things going in general? What are the latest trends? What are the biggest challenges? What about the greatest joys?

In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger take that big picture view of what's happening in higher ed these days.


What would you say is the quintessential element of effective learning: Intelligence? Persistence? Skills?  In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss what Ed argues is that key element: change.


Pages