Hannah Zimmerman—a public policy major at Stanford University and New York's youngest elected officialteamed up to write the Youth Organizing Guide to the Midterm Elections for Teen Vogue. (10/29/2018)




Kiran Sridhar—an economics major at Stanford University—co-authors this piece with General David H. Petraeus, U.S. Army (Ret.), for Politico.

The Case for a National Cybersecurity Agency 


Humility as a Leadership Trait

Recognizing what we do well, as well as what we do not do so well, is vital to self-awareness and paramount to humility. Here are some ways to demonstrate humility in the workplace:

  • Temper authority

  • Look to promote others

  • Acknowledge what others do


The Strengths and Weaknesses of 4 Distinct Leadership Strategies

Entrepreneurs who encourage agile and transparent company practices can empower their employees. As changes develop, leaders will need to use a combination of technical, pragmatic, and emotional intelligence to maintain successful companies. For your consideration, these four leadership styles:

  • Commander

  • Communicator

  • Collaborator

  • Co-creator


On the Dissertation: How to Write the Introduction

Above all, a dissertation introduction is a reverse-engineering project. You’ve finished all the chapters, so you know the goals of the work. Now it’s time to take those goals and write the intro to fit them. Your aim here is to turn the reader into an interested consumer of your particular dissertation.


Pathways to Public Policy Careers

What exactly is public policy? Where do lawyers fit into public policy? What is the best advice for someone pursuing a career in public policy?


Find out the answers to these questions along with resources for public policy employment.


How to Write a Thank You Note for Any Occasion (With 3 Examples You Can Use)

You should write thank you notes to:

  • Thank Someone for a Gift

  • Follow Up After a Job Interview or Meeting

  • Show Your Gratitude for Someone’s Help

  • Demonstrate Your Appreciation


How you actually do it:

  • Identify the Reason

  • Choose the Format

  • Write a Structured Draft

  • Edit Your Draft (to avoid common mistakes)

  • Send the Note ASAP


Guide to Gender Mainstreaming in Public Disability Policies

Inequality can be the result of gender, age, race, ethnic origin, ideology, religion or,  as  this  book  highlights,  disability-related  questions.  If  we  add  gender  to  the difficulties  people  with  disabilities  generally  encounter,  we  find  many  women  with disabilities are victims of discrimination and unequal treatment to a greater degree than men with disabilities.


Racial Bias and Public Policy

Research links both implicit and explicit racial bias to behavior, and uncertainty exacerbates the influence of bias in decision-making. Sample policy domains—where psychological research, race bias, and public policy intersect—include education, employment, immigration, health care, politics/representation, and criminal justice. Psychological research informs policy by documenting causes and processes, by expert testimony in court, and by generating and evaluating interventions to reduce race bias.


"Write a Sentence As Clean As a Bone" And Other Advice From James Baldwin

Write to find out. Spurn self-delusion. Use every experience. Read as much as you can. Travel. Write with recklessness. Trust the editing process (but know when to stop). Fight the conspiracy against you. Writing is hard. Don't be too ironic. Don't describe it, show it. Look deeply. Simplicity is king. Write towards truth. Talent is less important than diligence. Keep your distance. Write what you see. Remember why you write. Just keep writing.


Your CV Should Inform. Your Cover Letter Should Persuade.

Whereas the CV is a document that informs, the cover letter is a document that elucidates and persuades. The CV is a comprehensive record of the following:

  • The nature of your work.

  • The pace of your work.

  • The volume of your work.

  • The people in your corner.


In the cover letter, as an educator, you explain the following:

  • The substance of your research.

  • The contribution of your research.

  • The view inside your classroom.

  • How you "fit" the place.


In other words, if you don’t understand that a CV and a cover letter are not just redundant vehicles for the same information but are documents that exemplify fundamentally different genres, you are going to shortchange yourself and your application.


Dr. Tarr's Corner
A Little More Every Day
How you can eliminate bias in your own classroom


To lessen the effects of personal bias on our students’ (and colleagues’) experiences in academe:

  • Evaluate the work, not the worker

  • Acknowledge that bias exists

  • Self-assess

  • Actively listen

  • Don’t expect a finish line


Sept. 23, 2015

Teach a Law Student to Fish
A Tutor's Perspective on Legal Writing

In a writing center, the object is to make sure that writers, and not necessarily their texts, are what get changed by instruction. In axiom form it goes like this: Our job is to produce better writers, not better writing. (Stephen North)


April 13, 2015

Student Publishing
Motivation v. Inspiration

Youth is no barrier to great thinking, and great thinking is not just the byproduct of anomaly. If you want better writing, urge students to author something that matters to them, a point of view they want considered in the broader public. Ask them, “Why not change the world right now?”


July 14, 2014

Questions to ask in a job interview

Make sure you ask the question you really care about along with these nine — to both impress your potential employer and help you get useful insights into whether this job is the right one for you.



     Thanks again for your class visit and excellent presentation.



Stanford educator

    Kathleen is probably the best writing instructor I have ever encountered.



Stanford educator

       I learned almost as much from your IRAC presentation in 10 minutes of review as in an entire quarter in Legal Research and Writing.



Stanford educator

     Thank you again for all the help and advice.



PublPol graduate student

     Thank you for the nudge and the extra info! The info you’ve shared helps me understand the kinds of details I should share.



Stanford MPP alum

© 2018 by Novel Approach, LLC.

 T 650.723.3802 / F 650.723.0631 / ktarr[at]stanford[dot]edu

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