A logical fallacy is an invalid element in an argument. There are many kinds of fallacies. Read more
Dr Michael Johnston
Dr Michael Johnston has held academic positions at Victoria University of Wellington for the past ten years. This includes being the Associate Dean (Academic) of the University’s School of Education for the last 3 years.
Prior to his time at Victoria, Dr Johnston was the Senior Statistician at the New Zealand Qualifications Authority, a position he held for 6 years. Before that, he held positions at Melbourne and Latrobe universities.
Dr Johnston holds a PhD in Cognitive Psychology from the University of Melbourne.
He lives in Roseneath, Wellington, with his wife and two young children.
On many American university campuses over the last few years speakers are shouted down, students and professors say they are walking on eggshells and are afraid to speak honestly, and rates of anxiety, depression, and suicide are rising. Deplatforming in universities is also on the rise in New Zealand. Read more
New Zealand’s education system is in a state of deep malaise. For more than two decades, the literacy and numeracy achievement of our young people has been declining. Read more
I hated sitting exams at school and university. I would break out in sweats and get the shakes. Read more
Many students … intuitively know what the schools do for them. They school them to confuse process and substance … to confuse teaching with learning, grade advancement with education, a diploma with competence, and fluency with the ability to say something new. Read more
This week's podcast is a Free Kiwis episode. Drs Michael Johnston and James Kierstead discussed a range of issues with Dr Eric Crampton. Read more
Holly Gooch is part of the KiwiNet Emerging Innovator programme to progress a project to help twice-exceptional secondary students. Michael Johnston sat down with Holly to talk about her PhD research project. Read more
History is replete with war motivated by religious disagreement. One example is the centuries-long clash between the Catholic and Protestant variants of Christianity. Read more
Michael Johnston sat down with Emma Chatterton, Strategic Project Lead at ImpactLab, to discuss her experience gaining registration and certification as an overseas-trained teacher. In addition, they discuss how New Zealand might improve teacher supply through immigration, and the country's growing truancy rate. Read more
Spending money does not, on its own, fix problems. It matters how that money is spent. Perhaps you think that is obvious. Read more
The debate over free speech at universities continues to rage across the English-speaking world, including in this country. But what does the data show? Read more
Hailed as the “first freedom,” free speech is the bedrock of democracy. But it is a challenging principle, subject to erosion in times of upheaval. Read more
One of the few things more irritating than someone saying, “I told you so”, is someone sticking their fingers in their ears when you’re trying to tell them something important. In July of this year, the New Zealand Initiative published a Policy Note titled, A Way Ahead for Literacy and Numeracy. Read more
James Kierstead and Michael Johnston discuss the results of a second pilot for literacy and numeracy assessments, as well as an upcoming survey on the extent to which university students are willing to express their ideas. To listen to our latest podcasts, please subscribe to The New Zealand Initiative podcast on iTunes, Spotify or The Podcast App. Read more
I’ve always thought of Wellington as being a bit like Tolkien’s Hobbiton. It’s peaceful, comfortable, and largely ignored by the dark forces of the world. Read more