The transition to OS-X Yosemite seems to have resulted in minimum messups. A few incompatibility issues but none that warranted my reverting back to an earlier version. I really would do myself a service by committing to one browser (I favor Chrome) and a manageable number of regularly used browser extensions (say, 7 to 9 […]

I continue to experiment with my “best” course to make it better by finding the right balance of technology-assisted and personally- delivered instruction. I have been pleased at the helpfulness, useful feedback and receptiveness of students as we “experiment.” I just made a Screenflow screencast of what I taught in lab this week (using SPSS to create […]

I seem to return to certain topics—like reducing virtual desk top clutter. I am once again in the process of reviewing “applications”—I’ve installed (first on my Mac, then on my Ipads, then on my PC’s).I read a thoughtful piece in the New York Times this morning suggesting that the urge to declutter or the perceptions of succeeding […]

Three books that I have reread the past few years are George Orwell (Eric Blair)’s 1984 and Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson)’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There. George Orwell fascinates me on a number of accounts—his mastery of language, his prescience, and his outlook about politics. While […]

        Good recent research suggests that repeated testing enhances learning. How can I best incorporate those important findings into my courses? As a beginning, I have revisited a piece of software,StarQuiz, (originally developed by a high school student) that has proven useful and reliable since I discovered it about 10 years ago. There is something […]

Continuing my reflections on cascading into the classroom technology learning tools I’ve explored the past 7 years thanks to influence of Jane Hart … A wonderful tool for teaching about random sampling and random assignment is available through the generosity of Scott Plous who created the invaluable online resource Social Psychology Network. I introduce students to […]

Learning never ends. I am continuing to explore the value of technological learning tools to make my best course, PSY205, even better. Initial student feedback has been quite favorable. In the past two weeks I have experimented with Quizlet and SurveyMonkey. Tomorrow I shall introduce screencasts using Screenflow and Vimeo. IntrotoScreenFlow from David Simpson on Vimeo. […]

  Refreshed, recentered, rejuvenated, and fortified by candy (hence David in Candy Land) from Galena, Illinois, I’m back in the office preparing syllabi. Classes resume tomorrow (Tuesday) for me at Carroll. Even though I am teaching only one class (twice) this semester (“Statistics and Experimental Design“), syllabus creation takes quite a bit of thought and […]

Just finished reading Gabriella Coleman’s book Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistle-Blower, Spy: The Many Faces of Anonymous. She greatly expands upon her earlier thinking expressed in a 2012 Ted-Talk. I now have a much better understanding of “Anonymous” and their modus operandi.

It was a foggy 5:30 a.m. morning when I let the Newf out for her morning “duties.” One of many good reasons for driving carefully to Carroll this Saturday morning at 6:30 a.m. I surely would NOT like to hit another deer—nor would Santa or my car. I can still see fog outside my Rankin […]

For numerous reasons I am a slow writer. I don’t type. though a nuanced writer I do not naturally dictate into a piece of software like dragon dictate. I’ve never had a secretary. I am a prodigious reader (and have been criticized for reading too much in order to delay writing). I revise multiple times […]

I’ve been continually very impressed by WordPress’s Akismet spam filters—and annoyed and depressed that individuals spend so much time spamming or attempting to perfect successful spamming techniques. Not a day goes by when my filter doesn’t catch 7-10 spam messages—usually from abroad. Some are somewhat clever in their design. This one in particular interests me because […]

Maybe it is my aging. Maybe it is a lack of motivation. Maybe it is a lack of focus on my part. Gone are the times when I used to master a new piece of software or a new computer in a few hours—exploring every drop down menu. Gone is my ability (or the time needed) […]

Amy Peterson 4 years ago, I anxiously started my career as a Psychology Research Assistant for none other than the “psychology professor with the big beard”, Dr. David Simpson. Our first encounter was delayed because after receiving my assignment and seeing his picture, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to work for him, what a […]

1. Amy’s List of Top Tools: “Like Air” that I don’t even think about: Google Search It goes without saying Facebook Key to staying in touch with friends Youtube Mostly for entertainment or “life” tutorials Google Chrome My primary web browser Skype Key for communication My home internet is slow. This is a problem, but […]

I hope I never find myself in the position of this monk where I need to call in technical support to figure out how to read an object called a “book.” In my judgment there IS a danger, however, in becoming too dependent on “technology learning tools.” My favorite tools remain a # 2 pencil with an […]

It was a reasonably quiet day at Camp Carroll as I returned to campus for the first time since Mothers’ Day (Commencement) . I adjusted my invisibility cloak to semi-permeable but kept the missile defense system active. I spent most of the morning shoveling a path through my office and lab—the piles of papers, notebooks, etc. gave […]

  I’ve been thinking a lot about bagpipes lately. Perhaps that is because of my listening to NPR about the Scottish soda Irn Bru. Or perhaps it is because of my incipient interest in exploring my Scottish ancestry. A wonderful tradition on my campus both on the first day before classes and again at graduation is […]

Dear First-year Student, I may not meet you for awhile since I am not teaching first-year courses as often as I used to. I do offer you a heartfelt welcome.  You may well be the son or daughter or niece or nephew of one of my former students. That happens a lot. First-year students have […]

Too many apps. I am on a decluttering mission. I am especially interested in keeping (cross-platform and cross browser) software that enhances my capabilities for writing, screencasting, and facilitating global communication. First I shall revisit each application and attempt to answer these questions: Why it is on my machine? Was it pre-installed? Perhaps it was very favorably […]

Too much stuff. An embarrassment of riches: Books; office supplies; projects; computers; planners for organizing my life:). Too much either wasted or neglected: space; knowledge unshared; time; opportunities; networking. Inspired in part by the first chapter of Gretchen Rubin’s well written and thought provoking The Happiness Project and in part by my panicking that it is almost […]

As I systematically revisit Jane Hart’s Top 100 Learning Tools List, I must confess that (like Adam Grant) I continue to discover new ways to maximize Twitter’s usefulness for me as a learning tool. Though I have no interest in becoming a Twitter Ninja :), I am delighted by the capabilities, for example, of creating […]

As I wrote about earlier , I’m looking for ways to improve my course Psychology 303, Experimental Social Psychology. My first such course, experienced while I was an undergraduate at Oberlin, was life-changing for me as I discovered that the discipline of psychology could scientifically study issues such as prejudice, attitude change, interpersonal attraction, and aggression. I’ve […]

I’m sitting on the porch attempting to complete the bulk of my Fall semester Carroll University course preparation before intentionally disconnecting from the Internet and enjoying five days of pure vacation in northern Michigan a week from tomorrow. This year I shall be teaching two sections of Psychology 205 (Statistics and Experimental Design) and one section of Psychology 303 (Experimental […]

The letter was posted out of state on April 29, 2014. It appeared in my campus mail box a few days later. I glanced at the hand-written envelope (too) quickly, guessed that it might be a (sigh, yet another) solicitation for a letter of recommendation, and didn’t have a chance to open it until the following Saturday while I was […]

I recently purchased a five-year journal and I’m using it, as a planning tool for things I want to accomplish in the next five years. Inspired by my sister-in-law who a year ago told me that she might attempt to read my late father-in-law’s copy of James Joyce’s Ulysses, I’ve begun identifying “great books” which I’d like […]

It is about time to discard my invisibility cloak and return to campus. TIME is the campus -wide theme 2014-2015 for Carroll University (Waukesha, WI, USA) where I teach. Across the course of my 36 years of teaching, I have enjoyed creating special courses (‘Why War?” “Happiness” “Pioneering Web 2.0 Technology Tools”) when I have been allowed […]

Robin the Newf knows about FLOW. In an interesting article entitled “The What, Why, When, and How of Teaching the Science of Subjective Well-Being” in the April 2014 issue of the journal Teaching of Psychology Ed Diener and Christi Napa Scollon point out that in the past few years there have been over 10,00 publications […]

  Christine Smallwood has a thoughtful review in the June 9 & 16 2014 New Yorker “Ghosts in the Stacks” of Phyllis Rose’s The Shelf: From LEQ to LES. Smallwood raises some issues about reading of considerable interest to me: how we choose books today has been dramatically changed by technology (our preferences and reading […]

Commencement 2014 was a month ago. I have already begun preparations for teaching in the Fall (how the years have flown by since February, 1978 when I taught my first class here). From time to time I disconnect and disengage from my seemingly always being online and from focusing on productivity. Try it —-you may […]

This thought piece  has been slightly revised from a blog piece I wrote a number of years ago for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel under the name “Curious David” when I was a community educational blogger for them. I’m nervous and excited. Time to take off my invisibility cloak. Tomorrow (Tuesday, September 2, 2008 at 8:00 a.m.) I […]

When I initially arrived at Carroll with my “ABD” degree (All But Dissertation) in 1978 it made much sense to me and to my chair, Dr. Ralph Parsons, to teach what I had specialized in during graduate school at The Ohio State University. My introduction to the field of social psychology had come while I […]

Whispered Words of Wisdom from My Mom at Her Memorial Service Saturday, May 17, 2014 Sun City, Arizona Good Morning! I am David Simpson, Pat’s oldest (perhaps Prodigal ) son sometimes called  “David D.” by her.  A Professor of Psychology for the past 35 years, I am wont to speak for 50 minutes or to […]

  Commencement Is history. Academic life takes on a different rhythm. End of semester revisiting of goals. Planning for fall semester courses. Reflection, rejuvenation, redirection. One of the first academic professional development efforts I’ll engage in this summer is in reworking my Experimental Social Psychology course, PSY303. I need to somehow incorporate into it lessons […]

I have long had a fascination with languages. In high school I studied Latin for two years and followed that with two years of Spanish. When I graduated from Oberlin College in 1971 with an A.B. in Psychology I also had studied the equivalent of a Spanish major (including credits earned at the University of […]

Today is Mother’s Day  in the United States—my first since the passing on of my Mother on April 18 of this year. Some variant of this important Day of Recognition is of course celebrated throughout the world. Please pass on these three simple thoughts to your Mom—as I do to mine.   Ek is lief vir […]

My thoughts may be even fuzzier this Saturday morning as I sit here in my office—a little over 24 hours before your Commencement Day. I have just returned from a three hour meeting in my role of Faculty Observer at a Board of Trustees Meeting, and I was most impressed by the poise, courage, compassion, and […]

What does a professor DO? My answer to this question changes as a function of when you ask me—at different times of the academic year and developmentally at different times in my professional career.  I began to address this question in my first blog for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in October of 2007 when I […]

There was a time when I kept rough drafts of everything I wrote. Now, I am no longer in that habit and am in the process of cleaning out all my files (both electronic and legal-pad format). It is amusing to (re)discover some early writings when I thought I was at the leading edge of knowing […]

I’ve been doing a lot of time traveling lately partly due to my bed time reading of the marvelous 900+ page paperback The Time Traveler’s Almanac.  I’m tempted to try out Mr. Peabody’s Wayback machine. This is also the time of year where I am flooded with memories of my time at Carroll (and my […]

  Many WordPress bloggers have shared their vicarious and first-hand experiences with autism. A number of books attempt to describe the autistic experience through fiction and there are many films dealing with this topic. Below, Keri J. Johnson, one of my Carroll University research students shares her observations as a mother. According to Autism Speaks a […]

I’m in the process of revisiting several resources that have influenced my choice of online teaching tools. This post focuses on the book by Steve Johnson (2011)—a thoughtful and concise compendium of his thinking about today’s “tech-savvy” (high school age) learners and how to prepare them for their digital future. He systematically  evaluates over 30 “etools” […]

I’m going to miss these two student friends/students/best teachers/fellow conspirators when they depart campus on May 11 as graduates. Thanks, Phoumany and Ryan for all the laughter and learning and for making my Carroll experiences more joyful. Things we’ve done in Dr. Simpson’s Office Over the Past Few Years: (red items added by DumbleDave) Catalogued over 1,000 books (Dr. Simpson most likely […]

Five years ago I was quite hesitant to use Twitter. My student assistants found little value in using  it. They failed to see differences between it and, say,  the “update function” of Facebook. I read two books about it, consulted several Carroll alumni who DO use it (thanks Chris G,  Lori S, and Fred K.), […]

Now that I’ve returned to writing this blog with some regularity, I’ve begun to have a sense of the directions I hope to take it—or it to take me. My present thoughts are to write more regularly. I have just finished rereading Janet Majure’s wonderful Teach Yourself Visually WordPress, and have benefited much from studying online WordPress instructional […]

Robin the Newf is a guest collaborator tonight. Because of her presence (at my feet) I’ve been ruminating tonight about canine companions. My father-in-law, Walter G. Schmidt,  also loved dogs. In fact his love of dogs was extolled in his eulogy given by the Reverend Charles Valenti-Heine: …”And that world, for Walter, included his beloved Canines. Lucy, […]

  1) Earth Day concerns should be unifying every day concerns . 2) We must do more than merely virtually explore the wonders of our precious planet. 3) Preserving, savoring, celebrating, protecting, and nurturing Mother Earth should be a super-ordinate, cross national,unifying effort of international  concern. 4) We are all earthlings. 5) There is much to learn. 6) […]

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There is no excerpt because this is a protected post.