Skip to main content

Six Duke-Penned Books to Prep for Back-to-School

Duke authors examine education issues pertinent to students, teachers and parents

Seven covers of education books authored by Duke faculty.

Duke Today presents seven Duke-authored books pertinent to students’, teachers’ and parents’ back-to-school experiences. These explore factors related to the classroom, home, primary and secondary school, learning, teaching and more.

These books, along with many others, are available at Duke University Libraries, the Gothic Bookshop or the Regulator Bookshop.

From Isolation to Conversation book cover with author Leslie Babinski

From Isolation to Conversation by Leslie Babinski

Professor Leslie Babinski, director of the Center for Child and Family Policy, and co-author Dwight L. Rogers investigate the struggles of first-time teachers in this 2002 book. “From Isolation to Conversation” uses a question-oriented form of professional development to allow teachers to engage in discussions with their peers about problems in their professional lives. Blending school psychology and teacher education, the book adapts a consultation model consisting of real teachers voicing real problems encountered in classrooms.

The Battle Over Homework book cover with author Harris Cooper

The Battle Over Homework by Harris Cooper

Homework is a staple in the modern school system, yet can be a contentious matter among parents, students, teachers and administrators. In "The Battle over Homework," psychology professor Harris Cooper explores the benefits and costs of homework at the primary and secondary levels. The book answers questions about the right amount of homework, the role parents should play in the homework process and the connection between homework and achievement.

College Prep 101 book cover with author Nicki Washington

Stay Prepped: 10 Steps for Succeeding in College by Nicki Washington

In this follow-up to “Prepped for Success: What Every Parent Should Know About the College Application Process,” computer science professor Nicki Washington provides a roadmap for current and incoming undergraduates for navigating through college. Using her own successes — and challenges — as a college student, as well as those of current and former students, Washington, who is known for her national work building student access to computer science and other STEM fields, discusses topics and competencies within and beyond the classroom. “Stay Prepped” covers dorm life, money management, financial aid, physical and mental health, time management, and information for first-generation college students.

Getting the Best Out of College book cover with author Peter Feaver

Getting the Best Out of College by Peter Feaver

Political science and public policy professor Peter Feaver’s insider's guide shares advice from leaders at top-tier institutions on making the most of your college years. “Getting the Best out of College” includes tips on how to impress professors, live with a roommate, pick and excel in courses, design a meaningful transcript, earn internships, prepare for a successful career, and more. This new edition includes chapters on what to do when college “just isn't working,” and feedback from students who put the book’s advice to the test.

The Broken Compass book cover with author Angel Harris

The Broken Compass by Keith Robinson and Angel L. Harris

“The Broken Compass” asks whether children do better when parents are actively involved in their schooling. Sociology professor Angel Harris and Duke alumnus Keith Robinson assess more than 60 measures of parental participation at home and in school. The pair consider whether greater parental involvement can make a difference in the fundamental problems facing children's education today. Through scientific investigation of how parents across socioeconomic and ethnic groups contribute to their K-12 children’s academic performance, this 2014 study challenges long-held beliefs about the role of the family in educational success.

Civics Without Critics book cover with author Ian MacMullen

Civics Beyond Critics by Ian MacMullin

Contemporary political and educational theorists argue that education for civil character is vital for liberal democracy to survive and flourish. Political science professor Ian MacMullen examines whether civic education should shape children's values, beliefs, preferences, habits and identities in "Civics Beyond Critics." The goal of this book is to recognize the value of the kinds of character formation that civic education has traditionally involved without losing the portion of the truth that can be found in the traditional view of civic education.

Read more on the Duke Today Books Page