Documentary Special

Sunday 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

A different documentary special is featured each week.

10/09/2014 - The global energy economy is undergoing tectonic shifts. America is poised to be an oil exporter - something unthinkable a decade ago - and severe weather and climate disruption are driving a push toward clean fuels. On the next Climate One, Host Greg Dalton talks with business leaders, scientists and authors about the path toward a prosperous and sustainable economy.  He will also talk about what is driving the droughts, floods and other freaky weather around the country.

10/02/2014 - An Intelligence Squared Debate - In K-12 education, there is nothing more controversial than the Common Core State Standards, national academic standards in English and math. Adopted by more than 40 states, they were developed, in part, to address concerns that American students were falling behind their foreign counterparts. Has the federal government overreached and saddled our schools with standards that have been flawed from the start? The debaters are Carmel Martin, Carol Burris, Michael Petrill, and Frederick Hess.

09/25/2014 - An Intelligence Squared Debate – Is independent political speech the linchpin of our democracy or its Achilles' heel?   For democracy to work, some say, citizens (and corporations, and unions, and media outlets, and other voluntary organizations) must be allowed to express their views on the issues, candidates, and elections of the day. This proposition, they say, is exactly why the First Amendment protects the freedom of speech and of the press. On this view, restrictions on independent political speech undermine and subvert our constitutional structure.

Ready to Work

Sep 18, 2014

09/18/2014 - Vocational education was once a staple of American schooling, preparing some kids for blue-collar futures while others were put on a path to college. Today the new mantra is “college for all.” But not everyone wants to go to college, and more than half of jobs don’t require a bachelor’s degree. Many experts say it’s time to bring back career and technical education.

This American RadioWorks documentary explores how vocational education is being reimagined.

The New Face of College

Sep 18, 2014

09/11/2014 - Just 20 percent of college-goers fit the stereotype of being young, single, full-time students who finish a degree in four years. College students today are more likely to be older, part-time, working, and low-income than they were three decades ago. Many are the first in their families to go to college.

This American RadioWorks documentary shows how universities are adapting to serve these new students. It explains changing demographics, and explores what colleges must do to remain engines of social mobility.

09/04/2014 - The United States is in the midst of a huge education reform. The Common Core State Standards are a new set of expectations for what students should learn each year in school. The standards have been adopted by most states, though there’s plenty of controversy about them among activists and politicians. Most teachers, however, actually like the standards.

The Science of Smart

Sep 18, 2014

08/28/14 - Researchers have long been searching for better ways to learn. In recent decades, experts working in cognitive science, psychology, and neuroscience have opened new windows into how the brain works, and how we can learn to learn better.

In this program, we look at some of the big ideas coming out of brain science. We meet the researchers who are unlocking the secrets of how the brain acquires and holds on to knowledge. And we introduce listeners to the teachers and students who are trying to apply that knowledge in the real world.

08/14/2014 - If consciousness is just the workings of neurons and synapses, how do we explain the phenomenon of near-death experience? By some accounts, about 3% of the U.S. population has had one: an out-of-body experience often characterized by remarkable visions and feelings of peace and joy, all while the physical body is close to death. To skeptics, there are more plausible, natural explanations, like oxygen deprivation. Is the prospect of an existence after death “real” and provable by science, or a construct of wishful thinking about our own mortality.

08/07/2014 -Americans, and especially Californians, have had a big dose of severe drought this year. Though it hit the state hard, farmers were the most effected. They continue to worry about the threat the water shortage poses to their multi-million dollar almond, kiwi and walnut crops. The answer has been to irrigate crops with water that is pumped up from underground stores. The problem is that so many farmers are digging so fast and pumping so much water, that the aquifer levels are in danger of depletion. That puts the agriculture industry ultimately at risk.

0731/2014 - Is independent political speech the linchpin of our democracy or its Achilles' heel?   For democracy to work, some say, citizens (and corporations, and unions, and media outlets, and other voluntary organizations) must be allowed to express their views on the issues, candidates, and elections of the day. This proposition, they say, is exactly why the First Amendment protects the freedom of speech and of the press. On this view, restrictions on independent political speech undermine and subvert our constitutional structure.

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