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Re: [Fwd: [Fsfe-uk] Hello]

From: MJ Ray
Subject: Re: [Fwd: [Fsfe-uk] Hello]
Date: Wed, 24 Apr 2002 23:51:49 GMT
User-agent: slrn/ (Linux)

Richard Smedley <address@hidden> wrote:
> If however you merely train pupils you end up with the trained monkeys who
> might manage an MSCE, but will struggle to understand how computers and
> networks actually work.

They don't care how the tools work.  They just want to be able to work with
them.  They don't care that knowing how a tool works allows them to work
with a whole set of similar tools and figure out quite a few different ones. 

Sadly, the current education setup seems to have little provision to teach
them that point.  Nothing along the lines of "have a guess at generalising
this -- how can you tell if you're right?" is tested.  Instead you get a
load of chimps with skills that are fine for the next three years, but then
quickly depreciate.  So this is remedied with sticking plasters that say
"life-long learning" that just top up the short-term skills.

Is this because education is run like a business now?  Courses are
stream-lined and taught to achieve practical, measurable, specific
objectives.  Maximise the students per unit time by reducing the tuition and
marking times.  Also, keep them returning for more courses to keep their
skills up to date by not providing the skills to learn on their own.  More
money for the education business in total, but it doesn't really qualify as
an "educated workforce", does it?  Merely a "skilled" one.

Or maybe I'm just looking in the wrong places and very cynical at this time
of day.

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