Tuesday, October 14, 2008
the state of education
But this is a new one on me - an open notes test.
I asked the person taking the test if the professor thought the students were so unable to retain information that he had to resort to letting them use their notes to find the answers to the questions.
Pardon me for saying so, but in may day we called that cheating. You studied, you went in to take the test and you used your memory and reasoning ability to answer questions. You didn't rely on notes. You were actually required to "remember" what had been said in the classroom and show that you understood it enough to answer a question about it. Whatever happened to this concept?
Are current students' attention spans so limited that they can't be trusted to study and remember infomation given to them in lectures?
If so, I pity the nation.
We wont' have to wait for someone to overthrow the government, we'll give it away to anyone who has enough retentive memory to hold on to it.
I saw a stupid movie over the weekend, it was on one of the movie channels on Direct TV. It was called Idoitocracy. It's about how "dummied down" the future has become so that some low level jailbird with an average IQ is unfrozen (accidentally) from a cryochamber and ends up being the smartest person in the entire world. I thought it was a really stupid movie.
Now I am not so sure. It may be the way of the future.
Or probably only the way of the United States, because so many other places (like places currently refered to as third world countries) value education and improve on it instead of destroying it from the inside. They don't dummy down, they smarten up...
Unfortunately we will get pressure to make things easier and we do. To what purpose?
More's the pity.