As you probably are well aware from some of my previous posts, I'm not a huge fan of college institutions. I think that they are outdated, misinformed, corrupt and greedy.
While I'm against colleges, I'm pro-learning. I think that learning is the foundation to any great civilization and any progressive and forward-thinking society.
Colleges though, tend to actually act in the opposite interest of a forward-moving society. They are slow to innovate yet they continually increase their prices.
In the U.S. you can't even declare bankruptcy on your college debt.
In 2008, we had the housing crash and big banks were in big trouble. How'd they get out of trouble? Government bailouts.
So a big bank can lose millions upon millions of dollars - a lot of that being customer money - and still receive a bailout from the government, yet some 18 year-old kid can go to college for 4 years, rack up $250k in college debt, and still not be eligible for any sort of bailout.
Seems like a pretty fair system...
What I mainly want to talk about in these next few articles are the reasons why colleges are just outdated. Simply put, they are offering a service - learning and a degree that indicates potential future success - and a high price tag to go along with it.
The main problem in my eyes is with both the learning and with the price tag.
First of all, learning in a college setting is typically not even real learning. It's rote memorization of facts and then applying it to a test, forget those facts and learn new ones and apply it to the next test and rinse and repeat.
In a world where most facts are available at your fingertips, why would anyone need to memorize them for the pure sense of regurgitation? Especially if they're likely to forget 90% of them when the test is over.
Rote memorization in this setting has little value in the real-world.
If you've studied learning, then you'll understand that the best way to learn is to learn in a way that is interesting and encapsulating to the student.
Something like playing a video game that's centered around a historical event will teach the student that historical event in a meaningful and memorable way - a way in which the student is unlikely to forget anytime soon.
So why are these institutions continuing on with the old tactics of sitting in a lecture, taking notes, memorizing a bunch of random facts and then regurgitating them onto a test?
Because they think they can get away with it. They think that the customers will come no matter what they do.
These institutions are putting a hefty price tag (one that is constantly growing every year, I might add) on an "education" which is outdated and declining in value with each passing year.
So what's the solution? What could happen in the next several years to solve this issue? I'll explore an idea that I've been thinking a lot about in part 2.