The Internet is (Haphazardly) Replacing our Poor Education System

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posted on Sep, 18 2013 @ 01:55 AM
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What we know is built on the shoulders of giants. Education is fundamental for any society to function. Many things and ideas have been explored by philosophers and scientists for thousands of years, who have been conducting experiments or simply observations that have been the subject of critical thought for millennia.



In fact, the whole purpose of a bibliography in the back of a book was to trace that book's origins - in fact, a book kind of has a family tree of sorts in that respect, because the book referenced can be referenced, and some of those roots actually do extend back to places like Ancient Greece, in particular.

Breaking off from this cultural structure is not a great idea, necessarily - because a lot of things people think on A.T.S. and whatnot have already been thought of, a lot of things I think about have already been thought of -

Although it is still an amazing thing to have ideas that intrigue one enough to learn more about it - and it is also good to find new ways of learning things, or to be able to see past labels, or to bring new perspectives to the table and not be limited by past constructs,

as long as this is done in moderation and we are not cut from the lifeblood of our ancestors entirely. In that case, we could ironically be held hostage to perspectives that are much more limited in scope.



Our education system has little interest in building this foundation, instead its entire purpose is indoctrination -

Think about it, why pass laws to enforce strict limits on learning, but limits that do make sure that people know, and only know, what they need to function and go to work? The point is indoctrination, it is not education.



The internet allows for free access to information,

Notice that there is a natural tendency of people to want to learn more! How come this isn't harnessed by our education system?

I'm not saying to get rid of the education system, I am saying that we need to protect the right and encourage the right of the people to be educated, especially outside of a hostile environment like a classroom. It particularly worries me when the same hostile environment to learning is also carried to the home life.

What constitutes a safe learning environment may be entirely different from person to person, but we do need to be encouraging people to get together and talk about things in the community, and we somehow need to provide a way for that learning to be held accountable to reality in a way that simply keeps people from being misinformed but does not obstruct progress or making mistakes, or creativity, or ambition.

In addition, we need to make sure that people have the opportunity to have safe learning environments. This includes making sure that people are allowed freedom of speech and freedom of assembly, these are the two cornerstones of an education system that is operating outside of the establishment -

And as I mentioned earlier, there is nothing wrong with that, because it can compliment what we learn in school with what we actually want to learn in life.



But if the internet is shut down, are libraries going to return and be full of updated texts and fresh books with the latest? Not necessarily. Businessmen may figure out that they can make quadrillions of dollars by taking something we already have (information) from us and siphoning it back to us in exchange for disproportionate prices.

Finally, reading stuff online is not the same as experiencing it, or talking about it with someone, or making sure that sources are accurate - so the risk of disinformation runs a bit there.
edit on 18-9-2013 by darkbake because: (no reason given)




posted on Sep, 18 2013 @ 02:10 AM
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reply to post by darkbake
 


Public education was not welcomed with open arms when it was established. It was shoved down the throats of a community crying out against indoctrination. I'm not saying we should get rid of public school, but we do need to do away with the system we have now.

It's getting worse every year too. If you look at elementary school exams from say the '50s or '60s, what you will find is something the average high school student of today would probably not be able to handle. The "No Child Left Behind Act" was the nail in the coffin for any hopes of a system of education that actually worked.

This is a great topic to bring up. S&F for you!



posted on Sep, 18 2013 @ 03:14 AM
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reply to post by darkbake
 


Perfect timing with this thread. I agree that the internet has changed the very foundations of what we think of as education. Here's my example...

For my aquaculture class (community college) I had to take some measurements of a population and figure out the ideal length and weight of an organism, based on a smallish sample. Long story short, I had no idea what standard deviation was, how it applied to statistics, or how to present my information in excel.

One hour and a few youtube videos later and I can tell you more about normal distribution graphs than my wife who actually took statistics in college.

In the long, long, ago time before the internet, think about how long it would have taken me to figure that stuff out.

I think you've got to have a strong foundation but kids are brighter than we give them credit for and everything you need to know is online. Education in the US is ripe for a paradigm shift and being a new dad myself I've been thinking a lot about my kid's future education experience. I just hope it's better than mine was.



posted on Sep, 18 2013 @ 03:55 AM
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I hated school, always saw it as a place to learn How to pass an exam, that gave you the qualification for a job, but not the actual experience needed to perform that job. It was a place to mould you into a person who does what authority tells you to do.
I failed in school, I didn't get any qualifications except one, post-school which is supposed to be awesome but no one cares for it.

After school ended and I was stuck in unemployment, I was on the internet a lot and I'd find myself learning...and learning more....and learning more.

I'm now one of the smartest guys around, just not academically. Its amazing what you can learn, and with other peoples recommendations in books, essays, lectures, etc. Its very easy to gain information.

I didn't take physics at school, but I now I am quite knowledgeable on the subject.

And with a massive array of readily available information, I can learn anything I want.
edit on 1892013 by Bragi because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 18 2013 @ 05:34 AM
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darkbake
Think about it, why pass laws to enforce strict limits on learning, but limits that do make sure that people know, and only know, what they need to function and go to work? The point is indoctrination, it is not education.



In addition, we need to make sure that people have the opportunity to have safe learning environments.

These two things are powerfully linked.

I'm not disagreeing with the thrust of the point, I have a feeling the OP will agree with me but ...

Education shouldn't be safe, it should be dangerous and awesome. Debate and being challenged was part of the heart of being educated at one point. Young persons spent time learning the basics of rhetoric and questioning before they ever stepped into a lab or wrote essays. Many universities used to insist that all students read the great philosophers as a requirement regardless of course.

I imagine the current state of education started out with good intentions once upon a time, but parents grew concerned and thought school might be unsafe. Challenging has become unpopular, creative teaching is feared, and parents actually want to send their student to a Catholic school for example and be given back a Catholic adult as if they're ordering a big mac meal with fries.

They want children filled with facts and spoken to from authority, not fully formed people with opinions and respected mentors who might challenge that parental relationship. Educational institutions spend so much time avoiding controversy now that it hurts my tiny brain, and the problem is we still walk around acting like most degrees mean something. The majority of them don't mean much!

I don't think the internet or the education system has come up with a replacement for an amazing personal mentor who cares about you yet, and I think both attempt to stifle that relationship to a degree. Freedom of speech and freedom to assemble are great but it's not very educational when we use it to stand in rooms with groups of people we agree with and furiously try to avoid hurting each other's feelings, yet we still do both in education and on the internet.



posted on Sep, 18 2013 @ 05:52 AM
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reply to post by darkbake
 


I disagree with most of the concepts in your post. (I can expound if you like.)

To the major premise: No form of thought policing is good. So, I disagree with that too.

Cool pictures though.



posted on Sep, 18 2013 @ 02:10 PM
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reply to post by Bleeeeep
 


They are good pictures, thanks.

Go ahead, were you going to make an argument about thought policing being needed? I left out the last paragraph I was going to write because it didn't flow with the piece - compound on whatever you like.

I was going to say that relying on un-sourced information on the internet can result in quite a bit of misinformation or even disinformation being spread - that's actually why I put "Haphazardly" in the O.P. title -

In fact, I have read articles from mainstream news sources discussing how polarized our society is getting due to the fact that people are only accessing and reinforcing their own viewpoints online -

one of the themes I'm getting at is that people want to learn, but are turning to somewhat sketchy places to get their information - at the same time, there needs to be places that offer safe information for free. Also, learning how to think critically and get accurate information would be beneficial, in my opinion -

As ZeroReady noticed, if one is good at finding correct information (as he seems to have done quite well, which is a skill in itself, and covered in some college courses), it available on the internet - but so is completely false information.

As Ragi noticed, our education system sometimes doesn't actually get us the skills we need to enter the work force easily, as it doesn't provide hands-on learning -

In fact, I have a few friends who really would have rather gone to a trade school to learn some kind of mechanical skill of some kind, and they would absolutely have been better off today if they had, as that is their skill set - they are intelligent as well, but now one is a stay-at-home dad struggling and the other works at a call center.
edit on 18-9-2013 by darkbake because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 18 2013 @ 02:16 PM
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Pinke
Education shouldn't be safe, it should be dangerous and awesome. Debate and being challenged was part of the heart of being educated at one point. Young persons spent time learning the basics of rhetoric and questioning before they ever stepped into a lab or wrote essays. Many universities used to insist that all students read the great philosophers as a requirement regardless of course.



Wow Pinke, that was amazingly well-written. I completely agree, what I meant was it isn't safe for people in our education system to be challenged - and also, it isn't safe to think critically, necessarily, or have debate at all, in some cases, and this trickles into our society. I think it was my my word choice - I meant safe and awesome. Yeah.

This is from an article in The Seattle Times from today about how hostility in the global warming "debate" is actually causing people who are for global warming to push too far into unscientific extremism because they have no one to stop them.


Can we even talk anymore? Maybe not, discovered Cliff Mass.

Mass is an atmospheric sciences professor at the University of Washington. He has been troubled for years by the way the subject of global warming can turn typically even-headed scientists into politicized, tribal warriors.

As he sees it, there are the vast majority of scientists, including himself, who think human caused global warming is a reality. But some in this group, frustrated at the political inaction, have begun hyping the effects of climate change beyond what the science supports.

"It has taken on some of the traits of orthodoxy, in that it can't be questioned," Mass says.


When science and hyperbole mix, the result is uncivil debate, The Seattle Times

Anyway Pink, I completely agree with what you said there -
edit on 18-9-2013 by darkbake because: (no reason given)
edit on 18-9-2013 by darkbake because: (no reason given)





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