Gary Ackerman Brief CV_web

On Social Cognition

Humans are social creatures. Our brains function differently when we are engaged with others compared to when we are engages alone. We have capacity to solve much more complex problems when working together compared to when we work alone, but we also have greater capacity to deceive ourselves.  This summer, I finally read Edwin Hutchin’s Cognition […]

Gary Ackerman Brief CV_web

On Collapse

Rereading Jared Diamond’s Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed has been on my “to do” list for some time. I first read it about when the second edition was published. I’m a fan of Diamond’s work. I especially appreciate the detailed evidence and analysis he adds to popular writing. While I am not […]

Gary Ackerman Brief CV_web

On Change

In their 2010 book Change, Chip Heath and Dan Heath, scholars and business leader who study change, attributed resistance to change to three factors. These are observed regardless of the type of change. First, until new practices become habit, people must exert self-control to adopt them; this self-control is necessary to continue using the new […]

Gary Ackerman Brief CV_web

Is This Part of a Greater Pattern?

I started my career in education in the late 1980’s. To increase my salary, I enrolled in graduate courses and the I could take a purchase order from the school when I enrolled. My principal or department head needed to “approve” the course, but it was informal. When I started I was in control of […]

Gary Ackerman Brief CV_web

Thoughts on Standardized Education

My career has approximately coincided with the history of personal computers in schools. I was an undergraduate student when “computer” meant a device that sat on a desktop and was turned on only after placing a diskette in the drive that loaded the only program that could be used during the session. The display was […]

Gary Ackerman Brief CV_web

Technology Literacy

Technology literacy has been on my mind. My definition is inexact, but I can recognize it in people. You might be able to judge your own technology literacy by reflecting on how you react to new technology. For this post, I am going to ignore those who enthusiastically accept any new device. These folks are goo to […]

Gary Ackerman Brief CV_web

On Doing Nothing

Decision making is an interesting activity. Ostensibly, we want leaders who step up and take action. We seek decisive leaders who step up and “get something done.” The reality, however, is that we often find those who make the best decisions do nothing… at least initially. Obviously, there are emergency situations in which one must […]