Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Super Squirrel

Longest Running Thread EVER

Recommended Posts

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

The real problem is that many of the teachers are also dumb people. Well' date=' actually that is harsh. I'll rephrase, they are not capable of properly teaching and passing on the knowledge that students so desperately need....[/quote']

 

Of course, there are some inherent issues that must be granted from the outset. For example, people who understand quantum mechanics are not themselves understandable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

I also recall saying ... in fact, I think I'm in print with the comment ... that in a large 101-level science course, the worst students are the elementary education majors. (Most 101-level science courses don't have scholarship athletes in money sports in them.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

The real problem is that many of the teachers are also dumb people. Well' date=' actually that is harsh. I'll rephrase, they are not capable of properly teaching and passing on the knowledge that students so desperately need. Then of course you have the government stepping in, which is also composed of dumb people, and telling the teachers what they can and can't teach. So we end up with a case of the dumb leading the dumb. I think teachers, good qualified teachers, should be paid well enough that it would entice the more intelligent of the population to become teachers, and lead future generations into a more enlightened future. The fact that I make more than most college professors is just sad.[/quote']

 

At least part of the problem is the reality of the old adage "Those who cannot do, teach". During my bouts with education I have certainly come across a few teachers/professors who were doing what they did because they loved it. But most have been there because they had a degree couldn't really get a job using it, and working as a teacher was better than the other things they were qualified for.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

Of course' date=' there are some inherent issues that must be granted from the outset. For example, people who understand quantum mechanics are not themselves understandable.[/quote']

Very true, but those that understand and can teach it are by far some of the best teachers I've ever had. What tends to happen with those that are not understandable is that they prefer to "show off their intellect" rather than use that intellect to find ways to simplify concepts and build strong foundations on which the students can build their own master of the subject. It almost seems like a game that professors, referring to those that profess rather than teach, like to play with the students: Instead of teaching all of them, I'll search for the one shining star that can become my personal research assistant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

At least part of the problem is the reality of the old adage "Those who cannot do' date=' teach". During my bouts with education I have certainly come across a few teachers/professors who were doing what they did because they loved it. But most have been there because they had a degree couldn't really get a job using it, and working as a teacher was better than the other things they were qualified for.[/quote']

 

I've always hated that saying... I can do what I taught. And the best teachers I've had have always been those that can do what they teach. I think the saying should be modified to "Those that cannot do, teach poorly." That would be a much more legitimate and honest quote.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

In physics, there is a substantial literature about what does and doesn't work in teaching physics. I am not entirely convinced that literature is fully valid, because it's weak on control groups and there's a tendency to reach the result of "The way we are doing it works better." There's a major rant that follows from that, but it would be a digression.

 

OTOH, part of that literature is a collection of real conceptual stumbling blocks for students, and "tricks" ... I can't think of a better term ... to get them past those stumbling blocks. To a physicist, some of those fundamental misconceptions are just jaw-droppingly inexplicable, both in terms of the level and type of misconception itself, and in how pervasive the misconception is. Since I blundered across one such stumbling block by accident myself a few years ago completely by surprise, anything that lets me know what those conceptual hurdles might be ahead of time and how I can get over them with a maximum number of students still following me is worth reading and doing.

 

There are some aggravating factors in the sociology of the physics community, too. About 15 years back I saw Sheila Tobias give a talk to a major physics department about the shortcomings of physics "education" to some broad segments of the population who are ill-served by the way physics has been taught. In general, the physicists didn't get what she was saying. Physicists misapply their (correct) feelings of superior understanding about physics to the situation of trying to understand how other people approach the intellectual problems posed by physical reality, which is something they have no basis for feeling superior about. The result is a disconnect on a fundamental level: not a simple rejection of her main points, but rather a failure to recognize even what those points are, and reaching conclusions about those points which are wholly spurious, and doing so in a way which precludes their recognition of this fact.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

I've always hated that saying... I can do what I taught. And the best teachers I've had have always been those that can do what they teach. I think the saying should be modified to "Those that cannot do' date=' teach poorly." That would be a much more legitimate and honest quote.[/quote']

 

I wasn't intending that to be insulting, sorry if you took it that way. The intent of my post was to be agreeing with you. My point was that all too often teaching isn't what any given teacher really wants to do. They would prefer to be working a "real" job in their field, but weren't able to pull that off and so fell back to teaching because it is better than flipping burgers. I've known some great exceptions to that generality, but especially when it comes to primary education in my experience it is all too often the case.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

In physics' date=' there is a substantial literature about what does and doesn't work in teaching physics. I am not entirely convinced that literature is fully valid, because it's weak on control groups and there's a tendency to reach the result of "The way [u']we[/u] are doing it works better." There's a major rant that follows from that, but it would be a digression.

 

OTOH, part of that literature is a collection of real conceptual stumbling blocks for students, and "tricks" ... I can't think of a better term ... to get them past those stumbling blocks. To a physicist, some of those fundamental misconceptions are just jaw-droppingly inexplicable, both in terms of the level and type of misconception itself, and in how pervasive the misconception is. Since I blundered across one such stumbling block by accident myself a few years ago completely by surprise, anything that lets me know what those conceptual hurdles might be ahead of time and how I can get over them with a maximum number of students still following me is worth reading and doing.

 

There are some aggravating factors in the sociology of the physics community, too. About 15 years back I saw Sheila Tobias give a talk to a major physics department about the shortcomings of physics "education" to some broad segments of the population who are ill-served by the way physics has been taught. In general, the physicists didn't get what she was saying. Physicists misapply their (correct) feelings of superior understanding about physics to the situation of trying to understand how other people approach the intellectual problems posed by physical reality, which is something they have no basis for feeling superior about. The result is a disconnect on a fundamental level: not a simple rejection of her main points, but rather a failure to recognize even what those points are, and reaching conclusions about those points which are wholly spurious, and doing so in a way which precludes their recognition of this fact.

 

I think I've heard of a similar problem of thought before. A brief Google search on the term "Expert Blind Spot" netted this book: Understanding By Design. A quote from that book:

We call this problem the Expert Blind Spot throughout the book - the failure to grasp that key lessons involve understandings that have to be engineered, not facts that have to be transmitted. When the Expert Blind Spot is at work, we have lost sight of this understanding about understanding.

Which generally agrees with my (brief) memory of what I read on the issue. Please note that I haven't read the whole book.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

I can see that whole heartedly. I think there is a tendency for professors of many disciplines to take that approach, especially among the research schools where they aren't professors so much as researchers that have to teach. And to some degree I can understand the issue from my own experience. There have been many times when talking to others about more advanced computer concepts, especially programming methodologies, when they start throwing up hands and asking what can easily be considered rudimentary questions that any programming student should already know, and because I'm "in the zone," I would get the "what, you should know this" expression, and then realize, "oh yeah, these are beginning students." I think it is important for professors to remember their own early education, and keep their minds focused at the correct level of instruction even though I know this is quite hard to do when you are at higher levels of understanding.

 

Honestly though, I really don't mind the "superior level of teaching," initially anyway, as long as they are able to stop, field questions, and restate in simpler terms. I've hand a share of professors that refused to do any of those things, and in my opinion that is one of the greatest crimes a professor can commit when teaching. TEACHING being the key word, and the reason the students are there in the first place. I can only imagine how much more difficult it must be for professors such as yourself to teach courses that are so far out of the "average person's level of learning." Of course, I also think the reason for that is because the teachers at the grade school and high school levels either don't know the material well enough themselves to lay a solid accurate foundation for the students, or they flat out teach the wrong information, which I've also had happen with my own kids when I've asked them what they've learned. I've often wondered if perhaps we should adopt a slightly different approach to the economic model of education such as the one they have in Brazil. As I understand it, grade school is not free for anyone. You have to pay to go to grade school and high school, but college is completely free and funded by the government. I realize that there are some really serious socioeconomic issues with that method, such as the poor remaining so because they cannot afford school, and that is the reason we have a public school system; however, it would mean a likely greater amount of money flowing into the K-12 levels, which in turn would hopefully mean better paid teachers. Of course there are a million and one arguments why that wouldn't work either, but of all the issues in politics today, I feel quite strongly that education is the most important one, and is really where all the focus needs to go.

 

Imagine a US where the entire population has been given a solid education and everyone understands correctly the things that most of us on these boards take for granted such as what really happened in history, what the Constitution says, basic laws of physics and biology, the ability to read and write with comprehension, a strong understanding of algebra, and a solid understanding of ecomomics. I think that if our society had a proper understanding of these basic things then society as a whole would benefit greatly. If we look at all the biggest problems in the US, I believe we can trace these right back to a poor education for a large percentage of our population.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

I wasn't intending that to be insulting' date=' sorry if you took it that way. The intent of my post was to be agreeing with you. My point was that all too often teaching isn't what any given teacher really wants to do. They would prefer to be working a "real" job in their field, but weren't able to pull that off and so fell back to teaching because it is better than flipping burgers. I've known some great exceptions to that generality, but especially when it comes to primary education in my experience it is all too often the case.[/quote']

No, I didn't take it as an insult from you, and understand what you were saying. In my case, I really loved teaching. If I could, I would go back to teaching in a heartbeat. That really was my dream job. I was continually learning, and passing that learning onto others. As you can tell from my previous post just now, I think education is extremely important. Unfortunately, as we noted, teachers don't get paid well, when in fact they should be some of the best paid.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

I think it is important for professors to remember their own early education, and keep their minds focused at the correct level of instruction even though I know this is quite hard to do when you are at higher levels of understanding.

 

Honestly though, I really don't mind the "superior level of teaching," initially anyway, as long as they are able to stop, field questions, and restate in simpler terms. I've hand a share of professors that refused to do any of those things, and in my opinion that is one of the greatest crimes a professor can commit when teaching.

 

I agree. While I am not a teacher, and have a (imnsho) pretty good level of understanding programming concepts, I still remember my "eureka" moment when programming 'clicked' for me. I think that helped me relate to my nephew who wanted to start learning how to programm.

 

I also remember receiving instruction from a supervisor at work, and I didn't understand what was being covered, and after voicing non-understanding and a request to clarify, they just repeated themselves. :doi:

 

Imagine a US where the entire population has been given a solid education and everyone understands correctly the things that most of us on these boards take for granted such as what really happened in history' date=' what the Constitution says, basic laws of physics and biology, the ability to read and write with comprehension, a strong understanding of algebra, and a solid understanding of ecomomics.[/quote']

 

That's a pipe dream. :winkgrin: But seriously, as long as there is more than one school system (i.e., the Public school system, the many Private/Religious schools, and home teaching), this is not achievable. If nothing else, the presence of (Young Earth) Creationists denying Evolution and teaching Creation "Science" prevents that from happening on many scientific fields (Geology & Biology to name two).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

Got that part. Was asking what information you want specifically.

Here's the specific school: http://www.usfca.edu/bps/

Here's the program: http://www.usfca.edu/bps/undergraduate/ps/Information_Systems/

Thanks. That is a very well rounded course, though does your "BSIS - 320. Systems Analysis and Design" unit include Business Process Reengineering? And have you any experience with Soft Systems Methodology?

 

...rather than use that intellect to find ways to simplify concepts and build strong foundations on which the students can build their own master of the subject.
This to me is the essence of teaching. If the student doesn't grasp what is being taught then the educator has failed in teaching the student. In a very real way the student has to own the material and make it theirs for them to successfully taught. Once that happens the lesson is learned.

 

Rant:

And also each student learns at their own rate, which is one reason I find standardised use of end of teaching-period exams so useless. Surely there has to another way to assess that the student has learned the material. And surely the lecturer knows which students have learnt it and which haven't?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

There are some aggravating factors in the sociology of the physics community, too. About 15 years back I saw Sheila Tobias give a talk to a major physics department about the shortcomings of physics "education" to some broad segments of the population who are ill-served by the way physics has been taught. In general, the physicists didn't get what she was saying. Physicists misapply their (correct) feelings of superior understanding about physics to the situation of trying to understand how other people approach the intellectual problems posed by physical reality, which is something they have no basis for feeling superior about. The result is a disconnect on a fundamental level: not a simple rejection of her main points, but rather a failure to recognize even what those points are, and reaching conclusions about those points which are wholly spurious, and doing so in a way which precludes their recognition of this fact.

This would be a issue of pedagogy of physics who can teach physics best a physicist or an educator, right?

 

or to restate it, the issue is not about physics/physics curriculum but the teaching of it to those not versed with it?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

I think I've heard of a similar problem of thought before. A brief Google search on the term "Expert Blind Spot" netted this book: Understanding By Design. A quote from that book:

We call this problem the Expert Blind Spot throughout the book - the failure to grasp that key lessons involve understandings that have to be engineered, not facts that have to be transmitted. When the Expert Blind Spot is at work, we have lost sight of this understanding about understanding.

Which generally agrees with my (brief) memory of what I read on the issue. Please note that I haven't read the whole book.

 

From what I remember the concept of the trivium, the beginnings of the liberal arts was to teach the tools of learning -- so people learn how to learn.

 

IT would be nice for teachers to learn how to teach so students can learn how to learn. ;):P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

Education really is an initiation. You start of with baby steps and gradually "level up" so to speak. For tertiary education this really is apparent, and what I've read from what has been posted within the last 24 hours reiterates it.

 

Although I personally could do without the night-time 'exams' involving hungry crocodiles and the Egyptian pyramids. If you pass, you live; you fail...well you hope reincarnation exists but by then you're croc food.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

I post this as a very different approach to education.

 

"The School - Humanity's New Future" (The Ringing Cedars DVD 5) At this school, revealed in Book 3 of the Ringing Cedars Series, the children have designed, built, and decorated their own campus.

 

  • They cover the entire high-school curriculum in one year and get official Master's degrees by the time they are seventeen.
  • They cook their meals, do administrative work, and write their own textbooks.
  • They contemplate the meaning of the Universe and swim in mountain streams.
  • They dance, draw, sing, and pick strawberries in the surrounding fields.
  • They have no interest in the TV or video games.
  • They do not prepare themselves for ‘life' — they live every moment they breathe.

 

In this inspiring video these children will move you to tears and their words will touch the very core of your being.

 

Running Time: 30 mins

 

English dubbing · English subtitles

This place is in Russia. I realise that the dvd/books will put off a lot of academics, and I'm gussing from their pov that it would be viewed as "New Age".

 

However, if authentic (bolded for emphasis) is worth considering, and may point out the flaws that were designed within our 'system' of education.

 

If interested I've read it is best to read the first 3 books of the Ringing Cedar's series first. It is in the 3rd book that The School is mentioned.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

what the Constitution says' date=' basic laws of physics and biology, the ability to read and write with comprehension, a strong understanding of algebra, and a solid understanding of ecomomics. I think that if our society had a proper understanding of these basic things then society as a whole would benefit greatly. If we look at all the biggest problems in the US, I believe we can trace these right back to a poor education for a large percentage of our population.[/quote'] I agree with your post, and just want to comment on this section.

 

I'd include politics in that list. I think because the young kids are not taught politics (at least in Australia) that it why so many have little interest in it (myself included*). In Australia we have a federal election in full swing and the young people teenagers/early 20s have zero interest in it. I sadly think this gives our politicians license to pull the rug over the eyes of the electorate. A few knowledgeable people keep them honest, well try too, but a large population of Australia is just not knowledgeable about politics and I think this comes back to a failing of the school education system.

 

 

*I still don't know what terms like Left, Right, Liberal, Conservative, etc mean. All I do know is that if you lean to far one way you end up with a unnatural view of the world. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

If nothing else' date=' the presence of (Young Earth) Creationists denying Evolution and [b']teaching[/b] Creation "Science" prevents that from happening on many scientific fields (Geology & Biology to name two).
Rimshot: if they stopped bickering, they could learn from each other and realise that they are complementary not mutually exclusive.

 

...but as you said, it is a pipe dream. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

Thanks. That is a very well rounded course' date=' though does your "BSIS - 320. Systems Analysis and Design" unit include Business Process Reengineering? And have you any experience with Soft Systems Methodology?[/quote']

 

Business Process Reengineering--yes. It was actually covered in a couple different courses, and I immediately understood it because it was so similar SDLC which I used to teach in the programming classes I taught. Soft Systems Methodology--yes. I haven't had to use it myself, but I've learned how to use it. I actually learned it in some JC business courses before transferring to USF where it was covered again in the management course.

 

This to me is the essence of teaching. If the student doesn't grasp what is being taught then the educator has failed in teaching the student. In a very real way the student has to own the material and make it theirs for them to successfully taught. Once that happens the lesson is learned.

 

Rant:

And also each student learns at their own rate, which is one reason I find standardised use of end of teaching-period exams so useless. Surely there has to another way to assess that the student has learned the material. And surely the lecturer knows which students have learnt it and which haven't?

 

Agreed on all counts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

IT would be nice for teachers to learn how to teach so students can learn how to learn. ;):P

 

Amen!!! That is what fascinates me the most about bad teachers, and just teaching in general. So many teachers have never taken the time to evaluate their own methods of teaching to understand what it is that they are doing. However, that is a very difficult thing for anyone to do really.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

I post this as a very different approach to education.

 

This place is in Russia. I realise that the dvd/books will put off a lot of academics, and I'm gussing from their pov that it would be viewed as "New Age".

 

However, if authentic (bolded for emphasis) is worth considering, and may point out the flaws that were designed within our 'system' of education.

 

If interested I've read it is best to read the first 3 books of the Ringing Cedar's series first. It is in the 3rd book that The School is mentioned.

 

This sounds a great deal like Plato's Republic made modern.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

I agree with your post, and just want to comment on this section.

 

I'd include politics in that list. I think because the young kids are not taught politics (at least in Australia) that it why so many have little interest in it (myself included*). In Australia we have a federal election in full swing and the young people teenagers/early 20s have zero interest in it. I sadly think this gives our politicians license to pull the rug over the eyes of the electorate. A few knowledgeable people keep them honest, well try too, but a large population of Australia is just not knowledgeable about politics and I think this comes back to a failing of the school education system.

 

Interesting... I had written politics initially, but changed it to "history and Constitution" because I think politics have moved so far away from what government is supposed to be that studying it is more likely to confuse and corrupt than help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

Business Process Reengineering--yes. It was actually covered in a couple different courses' date=' and I immediately understood it because it was so similar SDLC which I used to teach in the programming classes I taught. Soft Systems Methodology--yes. I haven't had to use it myself, but I've learned how to use it. I actually learned it in some JC business courses before transferring to USF where it was covered again in the management course. [/quote'] BPR: THe second time I was taught it, the lecturer connected SDLC with BPR*. Previous to this I was introduced to it along with SSM (IIRC) and later did an accounting unit on Computer-Based accounting*. All the while the lecturer was talking about BPR/SDLC I'm thinking in the back of my mind "who engineered these processes to begin with". The answer is of course accountants. I wrote an addendum to a paper specifically pointing this out. before SDLC, before BPR in those wild times of the Mad Men (this is what I was thinking of actually) accountants were creating the policies and procedures, and internal controls that IT would like to think they preempted with SDLC/BPR. Nowadays I reckon IT Business Analysts should talk to the accountant and work with them for the best of the company (my 2c). :)

 

* This lecturer just go out of uni as SDLC was becoming in-vogue so he could relate first hand about its history. I remember it from when I studied it back in 1994/1995.

**This lecturer has taught the same unit for 20 years, he remembers making a BIG deal about this new fangled thing called a 'spreadsheet'. Can you imagine accounting today without a spreadsheet? :D

 

SSM: this was taught in the same class as I first learnt about BPR but not knowing (but I think guessing) its connection with SDLC. And I'd still yet to take the Computer-Based accounting class. Later on I bought a book written by the originator (Peter Checkland) as a reference.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Longest Running Thread EVER

 

Amen!!! That is what fascinates me the most about bad teachers' date=' and just teaching in general. So many teachers have never taken the time to evaluate their own methods of teaching to understand what it is that they are doing. However, that is a very difficult thing for anyone to do really.[/quote']

 

It may be that teachers don't know how to evaluate themselves properly. I'm sure SSM would help immensely. :D

 

(but then you'd have to teach them SSM...which is problematic situation in itself :P )

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...