Public Awareness Project (General Education, all levels)

This project was used in a general education course on genocide. Throughout the semester, students learn about the stages, starting with how othering creates out-groups, discrimination against those groups, and how that leads to more series action such as persecution before genocide actually occurs. Students have created some really innovative materials for this project! IContinue reading “Public Awareness Project (General Education, all levels)”

Poster Presentations (Undergraduate, Upper Level)

The following assignment was used in an capstone course for the Interdisciplinary Studies major in the College of Social Science at MSU. Final posters were presented in a public location on campus (see images below). For your final course project, each group must construct an interdisciplinary explanation of a specific genocide, using factors from yourContinue reading “Poster Presentations (Undergraduate, Upper Level)”

Improving Presentations in Quant Classes

I’m currently taking Dr. Echo Rivera’s class on Stellar Presentations, and trying hard to cut down on wordy Power Point slides to enhance learning. I find it easier to do this in my undergraduate courses, where I can easily use imagery to make my points, but it’s proving more difficult in more advanced courses, suchContinue reading “Improving Presentations in Quant Classes”

The Current Stage of Genocide in the U.S.

The political scientist Gregory Stanton has studied numerous genocides throughout history, and noticed they all followed similar patterns. They all develop in common ways, although aimed at different groups. After thorough analysis, Stanton has developed 10 stages through which all genocides seem to proceed: Classification Symbolization Discrimination Dehumanization Organization Polarization Preparation Persecution Extermination Denial Every country–everyContinue reading “The Current Stage of Genocide in the U.S.”

Why Is It So Difficult to Say “What Works” with Regard to Gun Violence?

As a criminologist, I try to base my opinions on crime policy around “what works” with regard to findings from academic research. Certainly, there are times I have strong personal opinions about policies… but if the research says they don’t work (or work in a way that I wouldn’t expect), I need to abandon myContinue reading “Why Is It So Difficult to Say “What Works” with Regard to Gun Violence?”

Academic “Social Media” and Copyright

Academic social media sites are becoming commonplace. Referred to as “Scholarly Collaboration Networks,” (SCN’s), sites such as ResearchGate,, and were all created to allow academics to share their work and network with others in their chosen fields. One interesting aspect of these sites is the degree to which they encourage the uploading ofContinue reading “Academic “Social Media” and Copyright”

Enhancing the Classroom Experience

Last month, I spoke to a group of our faculty about using Facebook for teaching. You can view my class page here, which contains posts relevant to my topic. Students can earn participation points for posting in my classes, and many remain “fans” of the page long after the course is over. I’ll be speakingContinue reading “Enhancing the Classroom Experience”