Sunday, September 28, 2008

DIY Scholar - a blog you all should follow

If you like my blog, you should also be aware of at least one other blog that is around: The Do It Yourself Scholar, or DIY Scholar. DIY Scholar is run by Dara, who manages to keep track of whatever free material is available from the world's universities and informs us how to obtain that stuff.

Since a lot of these are recorded lectures and among those are quite a few podcasts, Dara and I frequently report about the same material, but if you are interested in academic level educational material, a lot more can be found at her site. She will be the first to let you know what new institutions have started sharing their audio on iTunes U. She also helps using that directory and gives technical tips for converting files (where needed). Her attention goes not only to audio, but also to whatever course material is available as text or video.

There are numerous podcasts I have discovered thanks to Dara. Recently, thanks to her, I found out about the Teaching Company, which delivers a huge amount of streams, but also a new podcast. I might be reviewing the two lectures about the historical backgrounds (or lack thereof) for Dan Brown's best-seller The Da Vinci Code. On Dara's site you can already read a review about the lecture addressing the extinction of the dinosaurs.

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Psychologist writer - podcast review

One of the recent editions of Shrink Rap Radio featured an interview with crime writer Roberta Isleib. For those who wonder why this shows up in Dr. Dave's feed and not in that of The Writing Show, one should know that David van Nuys has an affinity with creative writing and Isleib is not the first fictional writer interviewed on Shrink rap Radio.

One of Dr. Dave's favorite subjects is discussed with Isleib (who is a psychologist herself) as well: the way psychology and psychologists are portrayed in fiction, be it literature, TV or film. It turns out that this is one of the reasons Isleib has psychologist characters; to counter-weight what awful imaging goes on. She doesn't try to describe an ideal situation, but rather a more realistic one as opposed to some of the examples from film she describes.

Another subject for discussion is how psychology is helpful for the writer. Isleib acknowledges it is. It helps for giving characters a life-like feel and obviously for situations that involve therapy. As to writing about golfers - this is where the interview starts - I am sure it doesn't hurt.

More Shrink Rap Radio:
Dana Houck, Prison Psychologist,
The humane working place,
Nirvana and the Brain,
Psychoanalysis - Shrink Rap radio review,
Conscious Living.

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