Monday, April 13th, 2009

Dirigo!* (Maine takes the lead)

The University of Maine’s New Media Department has approved new promotion and tenure guidelines that take into account social media, so professors get some credit for a widely read blog, contributions to popular or professional wikis, and so forth.

A “rationale,” “New Criteria for New Media” was written for the peer-reviewed journal Leonardo (but you can be sure 99% of people will read the link just cited). As David Weinberger writes:

“This the right thing to do not only because it is a more realistic assessment of an academic’s worth. It’s also the right thing to do because it helps to build the value of the network. If knowledge and expertise are becoming properties of the network, it is the social responsibility of our institutions to encourage the enhancement of that network.”

As a Mainer, I take special pride in this. I only wish the New Media Department, at Orono, outside of Bandor, were closer to Portland.

*Dirigo, I lead, is the state motto. Maine has a lot of pithy mottoes. Portland, ravaged by fire four times, has the doughty Resurgam, “I’m gonna get up again!”

Labels: academics, maine


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