Commentary

Interviews with Arab Albertan students reveal their encounters with uneducated views at school.

09
May
2019

I was a full-time high school teacher in an Ontario Islamic school in 2008 when I noticed that my Arab Muslim students led lives of religious conformity at school that reflected their Islamic values at home but did not necessarily define their full selves.

For example, many students who wore the hijab or who prayed at the required times were skeptical of beliefs parents and teachers expected them to take for granted, like creationism. At the same time, they studied the Ontario provincial curriculum and they were equally unsure if this curriculum resonated with how they see themselves in the world.

I was aware of my existence as both an authority figure and a lifelong learner in a system that approached religious teaching with rote learning. I did not feel the curriculum reflected traditional Islamic ways of knowing, which are rel...

Headlines

21
May
2019

COMMENTARY || UCP promises would imperil academic free speech

Policy proposals to guarantee free speech at universities and pin government funding to economic performance would undermine academic freedom, argues political science researcher.

Now that the UCP is in power, there’s been a broader outline of some policy initiatives on the horizon. Although details are still slim, the UCP has said that they’ll be pitching legislation that
16
May
2019

COMMENTARY || The deadly consequences of proposed Canadian asylum restrictions

Tightening refugee law won't stop migrants from trying to come to Canada—it will only make the journey more perilous, argues U of A historian.

Seidu Mohammed lost all 10 of his fingers to frostbite in December 2016, exposed to the harsh cold of a Manitoba winter when he avoided official border crossings on his trek from the United States
07
May
2019

COMMENTAIRE || Le retour aux sources conservatrices en Alberta

Jason Kenney veut ramener l’Alberta au cœur des débats nationaux, d’où la dimension pancanadienne importante que comporte son élection.

La victoire sans équivoque du Parti conservateur uni (PCU) de Jason Kenney le 16 avril dernier―avec 54,8 % des voix exprimées contre 32,7 % pour le Nouveau Parti démocratique (NPD) de Rachel
01
May
2019

COMMENTARY || 'Unbefriended' seniors are the forgotten population

U of A researchers call for expanding role of public guardians to ensure ‘unbefriended’ seniors have access to basic living needs beyond food and shelter.

What happens when a person grows older and is no longer able to make health and financial decisions for themselves—but also does not have family or friends who can make those decisions on their
01
May
2019

COMMENTARY || Alberta grizzly bears will feel the effects of climate change

Food staples like buffaloberries are ripening sooner, which could affect the vulnerable bears' reproductive rates, say researchers.

Toward the end of each summer, grizzly bears in Alberta’s Rocky Mountains gorge on the tart red berries of a shrub called Canada buffaloberry (Shepherdia canadensis). Lacking the salmon of coastal
30
April
2019

COMMENTARY || Lower speed limits give core residents what they want

Proposed 30 km/h speed limit on residential roads in central Edmonton makes sense for the people who live and commute there, argues U of A urban planning expert.

Streets are for street hockey, at least the streets in my neighbourhood are. They are for young kids riding bikes, for unloading and loading our vehicles, for chatting with neighbours who stop as
30
April
2019

COMMENTARY || Traditional masculinity may keep English-speaking men from studying new languages

Top employers value “soft skills” that come from education in the humanities—which is why it's economically important to understand why men are avoiding these female-dominated fields, argues U of A researcher.

For decades, more women have been entering male-dominated educational fields and careers. The proportion of men in female-dominated areas, on the other hand, has remained mostly unchanged. Now,
25
April
2019

COMMENTARY || Google’s algorithms discriminate against women and people of colour

Racism and sexism in search results reflect tech giant's inattention to users who aren't white and male, argues U of A expert.

At the start of Black History Month 2019, Google designed its daily-changing homepage logo to include an image of African-American activist Sojourner Truth, the great 19th-century abolitionist and
23
April
2019

COMMENTARY || Jason Kenney won by portraying himself as the Guardian of Alberta

By taking on a defender role typically reserved for Alberta premiers, the UCP leader positioned himself for predictable success in the provincial election, says U of A political scientist.

A number of years ago, I wrote a book about how to become a premier of Alberta. In it, I suggested one of the keys was to cast oneself as the “Guardian” of the province’s interests. The findings
12
April
2019

COMMENTARY || We need more organ donors, but presumed consent is not a magical fix

Nova Scotia’s plan to adopt opt-out system is an opportunity to build evidence needed to improve organ donation rates across Canada, argues health law expert Timothy Caulfield.

Organ donation is a tough issue. The vast majority of Canadians agree it is a good idea and we are keen to help, but few—about 20 per cent—actually sign up to be an organ donor. Indeed, Canada has
11
April
2019

COMMENTARY || How public education is under threat in some Canadian provinces

Proposed and actual policy reforms in several provinces echo similar international efforts that have eroded public education, argues U of A expert.

From a global perspective, education in Canada is a great success story. Vibrant schools are offering quality education and Canadian schools are well-resourced when compared to many other