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Posted: 10/27/2013 12:35:56 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/27/2013 1:21:35 PM EST by absael]
EDIT: Please read my post before responding. I am NOT saying that a Bachelor's degree should not include general education courses at all.

ETA2: after re-reading the post, I see that the first paragraph didn't say quite what I intended it to; I meant to ask whether you felt that any, not all, of these courses were unnecessary. Unfortunately, after a couple of edits, that meaning wasn't clear. I'm not going to change it, but please read it with this in mind.

For those who are either in college or have earned a Bachelor's, how do you feel about taking a large number of general education courses, or courses that are only tangentially related to the major? Do you feel that the courses in composition, history, social science, humanities, etc. were worthwhile, or would have preferred to either graduate with fewer hours, or take more courses in the major area of study?

On the one hand, some of my favorite courses were outside my major (Astronomy and Cosmology, Anthropology, Logic), and I overcame writer's block and became a better writer after two semesters of composition (what do you mean, it doesn't show? ). And I understand the viewpoint that a college graduate should be expected to have an education that's at least somewhat well-rounded - and that a BS degree should include a broad education in the sciences, and a BA degree should include a broad education in the arts.

OTOH, I'm having to take three courses with "Cultural" in the title, and I can't help wondering how that time and money might be better spent. And my major requires twelve hours of "Secondary Focus" courses, which are in areas that are only marginally related to the major. Combined, these courses comprise 17.5% of the hours required for graduation. I can't help thinking that there are far more useful courses that I could take instead - or that the 120 hour minimum for a Bachelor's degree could be reduced.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:37:56 PM EST
Yes. Why did I need to read Shakespeare for an IT degree?
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:40:57 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/27/2013 12:43:34 PM EST by RedDane]
I guess that depends a lot on what you are there for.

One could argue that if you are just there for a specific trade that classes outside of that are a waste of time. Meanwhile others could say that by learning a wide range of topics you are getting an eduction.

I'm from the camp that there isn't any such thing as useless knowledge. I enjoyed my core classes. YMMV.

EDIT:

The only classes I didn't enjoy were the African American Literature, a.k.a. Politically Correct Red Herrings that the administration felt necessary to interject into the curriculum in an attempt to avoid lawsuits.

Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:41:05 PM EST
Yes both my nursing degrees required less classes from private colleges than any local state schools.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:41:14 PM EST
You are supposed to come out of college with a "well-rounded" education.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:42:06 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Willmar:
You are supposed to come out of college with a "well-rounded" education.
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I agree. (BSET, MSEE)
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:42:12 PM EST
It's supposed to be like that. It makes you in to less of an asshole if you study things you aren't interested in but others are.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:42:52 PM EST
College isn't trade school.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:43:21 PM EST
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Originally Posted By rdblan2:
Yes. Why did I need to read Shakespeare for an IT degree?
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Completely agree..."well rounded ...yada yada."

In other countries you don't waste time (money) keeping the 20 professors of philosophy employed.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:43:50 PM EST
Depends on the degree. Mine did not have too many non related classes.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:44:21 PM EST
A college degree isn't a technical certification. It includes the implication that the recipient is somewhat well rounded.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:44:41 PM EST
"General Education" requirements are just a way to force funding in to programs that otherwise would not be self-sustaining.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:45:10 PM EST
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Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.
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+1
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:45:37 PM EST
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Originally Posted By rdblan2:
Yes. Why did I need to read Shakespeare for an IT degree?
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One does not need to read Shakespeare for an IT degree. You chose to seek an IT degree from an institution that required that of its students. Perhaps the institution believes that well rounded graduates will be more successful and by producing such graduates, they might improve the reputation of their brand. That is their right, as it is yours to seek an IT degree from another institution.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:45:46 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Infantry26:

Completely agree..."well rounded ...yada yada."

In other countries you don't waste time (money) keeping the 20 professors of philosophy employed.
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Originally Posted By Infantry26:
Originally Posted By rdblan2:
Yes. Why did I need to read Shakespeare for an IT degree?

Completely agree..."well rounded ...yada yada."

In other countries you don't waste time (money) keeping the 20 professors of philosophy employed.


Bad example, don't IT guys have to study up on Logic?
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:46:36 PM EST
Yes and no.
Science, math and engineering degrees have too much general ed stuff in them.
General ed degrees do not have enough science, math and engineering in them
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:47:18 PM EST
Yes and No. Most employers want to see that you stuck it out and made it through all of the bullshit. I never understood why i needed French to get a history degree, but whatever I got it.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:48:26 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/27/2013 12:50:24 PM EST by mayday]
College is a journey -- not a destination.

Its not simply completing a number of course and going home; its there to mold you into a well educated person in all aspects. It also helps you mature mentally, socially and emotionally -- which is why it takes four years.

...and to answer your questions; i loved learning about subjects unrelated to my field. I took classes in Biology, Astronomy, Golf, WWII History, Film -- loved them all.

I enjoyed every minute of my college experience and would not trade it for anything. to this day i say it was the best four years of my life.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:48:38 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Scaldfish:


+1
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Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.


+1

This.

Go to a Vo Tech and get a technical certificate if you're scared of that reading and writing stuff.

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Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:49:18 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Scaldfish:


+1
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Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.


+1
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:51:10 PM EST
College has evolved into a form a Trade Schools. If there was a place I could get a Finance degree that would be accepted by major employers that didn't involve psychology, or literature credits, I would take it and skip those classes. I can see the well rounded part, but I also see it more as revenue generation for most Colleges.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:51:29 PM EST
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Originally Posted By absael:
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.
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Originally Posted By absael:
Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.


+1
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.


Well, that settles it. Colleges need more English classes.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:52:18 PM EST
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Originally Posted By skinny79:


Well, that settles it. Colleges need more English classes.
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Originally Posted By skinny79:
Originally Posted By absael:
Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.


+1
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.


Well, that settles it. Colleges need more English classes.


LOL

OP, yes I scanned it and there is an implied no, I do not think there are too many general courses, in my post.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:52:32 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/27/2013 12:53:14 PM EST by RedDane]
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Originally Posted By skinny79:


Well, that settles it. Colleges need more English classes.
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Originally Posted By skinny79:
Originally Posted By absael:
Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.


+1
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.


Well, that settles it. Colleges need more English classes.


LOL! Meanie
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:52:45 PM EST
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Originally Posted By absael:
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.
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Originally Posted By absael:
Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.


+1
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.


Why don't you think they should be required?

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Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:53:52 PM EST
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Originally Posted By NoStockBikes:

This.

Go to a Vo Tech and get a technical certificate if you're scared of that reading and writing stuff.

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Originally Posted By NoStockBikes:
Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.


+1

This.

Go to a Vo Tech and get a technical certificate if you're scared of that reading and writing stuff.

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile
You didn't read my post either, did you? Don't be scared of that reading stuff; it's only a few short paragraphs.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:55:25 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/27/2013 12:57:27 PM EST by mayday]
Originally Posted By absael:
EDIT: Please read my post before responding. I am NOT saying that a Bachelor's degree should not include general education courses at all.


For those who are either in college or have earned a Bachelor's, how do you feel about taking a large number of general education courses, or courses that are only tangentially related to the major? Do you feel that the courses in composition, history, social science, humanities, etc. were worthwhile, or would have preferred to either graduate with fewer hours, or take more courses in the major area of study?

On the one hand, some of my favorite courses were outside my major (Astronomy and Cosmology, Anthropology, Logic), and I overcame writer's block and became a better writer after two semesters of composition (what do you mean, it doesn't show? ). And I understand the viewpoint that a college graduate should be expected to have an education that's at least somewhat well-rounded - and that a BS degree should include a broad education in the sciences, and a BA degree should include a broad education in the arts.

OTOH, I'm having to take three courses with "Cultural" in the title, and I can't help wondering how that time and money might be better spent. And my major requires twelve hours of "Secondary Focus" courses, which are in areas that are only marginally related to the major. Combined, these courses comprise 17.5% of the hours required for graduation. I can't help thinking that there are far more useful courses that I could take instead - or that the 120 hour minimum for a Bachelor's degree could be reduced.
View Quote


...i didnt take the time to read your post -- i kinda' scanned for a key word here and there -- and i concluded that you hate Baby Jesus and America. Am i right?

Buck-up tiny camper; someday you'll be let out of the reformatory and will get a chance to go to College.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:57:09 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/27/2013 12:58:14 PM EST by NoStockBikes]
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Originally Posted By mayday:


...i didnt take the time to read your post -- i kinda' scanned for a key word here and there -- and i concluded that you hate Baby Jesus and America. Am i right?
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Originally Posted By mayday:
Originally Posted By absael:
EDIT: Please read my post before responding. I am NOT saying that a Bachelor's degree should not include general education courses at all.


For those who are either in college or have earned a Bachelor's, how do you feel about taking a large number of general education courses, or courses that are only tangentially related to the major? Do you feel that the courses in composition, history, social science, humanities, etc. were worthwhile, or would have preferred to either graduate with fewer hours, or take more courses in the major area of study?

On the one hand, some of my favorite courses were outside my major (Astronomy and Cosmology, Anthropology, Logic), and I overcame writer's block and became a better writer after two semesters of composition (what do you mean, it doesn't show? ). And I understand the viewpoint that a college graduate should be expected to have an education that's at least somewhat well-rounded - and that a BS degree should include a broad education in the sciences, and a BA degree should include a broad education in the arts.

OTOH, I'm having to take three courses with "Cultural" in the title, and I can't help wondering how that time and money might be better spent. And my major requires twelve hours of "Secondary Focus" courses, which are in areas that are only marginally related to the major. Combined, these courses comprise 17.5% of the hours required for graduation. I can't help thinking that there are far more useful courses that I could take instead - or that the 120 hour minimum for a Bachelor's degree could be reduced.


...i didnt take the time to read your post -- i kinda' scanned for a key word here and there -- and i concluded that you hate Baby Jesus and America. Am i right?


Looks like he hates 17.5% of all cultures. His astronomy degree sounds fun, but he has to work 120 hours?! Sounds brutal.

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Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:58:13 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Willmar:
You are supposed to come out of college with a "well-rounded" education.
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This.

Also, it seems to me, just out of curiosity in four years there would be a bunch of courses outside your major that you would want to take.
There aren't a lot of majors over 70 credits leaving at least 20 or so choices open.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 12:58:51 PM EST
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Originally Posted By absael:
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.
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Originally Posted By absael:
Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.


+1
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.


of course I fucking read it. am I not allowed to give my opinion?

university is not a job training factory. that's a relatively new idea in western society. less than a century ago, university was only for the upper crust. university is intended to broaden one's world view and enrich one's mind; it is a vehicle through which a student may grow as a person. ergo, it is appropriate that the university student should be required to take classes in a broad spectrum of topics.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:00:46 PM EST
I believe my 2 Associates degrees required too many basics.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:01:53 PM EST
It's nice to be well-rounded.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:04:19 PM EST
Padding the bill.

Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:04:42 PM EST
No, in answer to your REVISED OP, no, I do not believe the universities require too many core classes.

Disclaimer: my experience in this is 21 years old. YMMV.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:04:57 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Scaldfish:


of course I fucking read it. am I not allowed to give my opinion?

university is not a job training factory. that's a relatively new idea in western society. less than a century ago, university was only for the upper crust. university is intended to broaden one's world view and enrich one's mind; it is a vehicle through which a student may grow as a person. ergo, it is appropriate that the university student should be required to take classes in a broad spectrum of topics.
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Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By absael:
Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By 98_1LE:
College isn't trade school.


+1
Did either of you read my post? I'm not saying that general education courses shouldn't be required, I'm asking whether you believe there are too many. I'm not posing it as an "either/or" question.


of course I fucking read it. am I not allowed to give my opinion?

university is not a job training factory. that's a relatively new idea in western society. less than a century ago, university was only for the upper crust. university is intended to broaden one's world view and enrich one's mind; it is a vehicle through which a student may grow as a person. ergo, it is appropriate that the university student should be required to take classes in a broad spectrum of topics.
Please see my second edit in the OP, after re-reading my post, I think I owe those who I chastised an apology.

However, you still haven't answered the question that I intended to ask: Do you think that your major required too many general education courses, or that it limited some general education electives to areas that did not contribute to what you consider a properly well-rounded education?
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:05:07 PM EST
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Originally Posted By TexasTerror:
I believe my 2 Associates degrees required too many basics.
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there is an important distinction between an university and a junior college. the junior college that you attended is intended to be more of a vocational institution; therefore, it should follow that the coursework is more tightly focused on your major with less extraneous work.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:06:29 PM EST
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Originally Posted By rdblan2:
Yes. Why did I need to read Shakespeare for an IT degree?
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Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:09:12 PM EST
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Originally Posted By tyman:

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Originally Posted By tyman:
Originally Posted By rdblan2:
Yes. Why did I need to read Shakespeare for an IT degree?



why do you think that you need to read shakespeare for an IT degree?

if you're out driving around town and you suddenly get thirsty for a drink of water, do you stop into the Ruth's Chris and ask to be seated for a drink of water?

no?

then why would you go to a university if all you seek is a vocational degree? go to a private trade school that specializes in technology.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:11:47 PM EST
My degree required an extra 20 hours above what the norm was at the time to get an extra 20 in the core. Instead of 130 it required 150 hours for a BS. Forest/Wildlife Management.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:11:55 PM EST
I just had a mail server crash here at work. Since the school made me read all that Shakespeare, I started speaking in tongues and blurted out some Taming of the Shrew to management, as well as the server, and it has magically spun back online.

For this reason, that class was not at all a waste of my time or money.

Wait...

Yes, yes it was.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:12:21 PM EST
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Originally Posted By absael:
However, you still haven't answered the question that I intended to ask: Do you think that your major required too many general education courses, or that it limited some general education electives to areas that did not contribute to what you consider a properly well-rounded education?
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well, my major (and subsequent career) is one of the few "classic" fields for which university was actually intended. if i am not a well-rounded person, then i cannot do my job to the best of my ability. that is not the case with all people, but it is the case with me. therefore, I did not take issue with a single one of the classes i was required to take. every one of them broadened my world view in one way or another. your mileage may vary.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:13:56 PM EST
Depends on whether you think people go to college for an education or for training.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:15:47 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:20:04 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Scaldfish:


well, my major (and subsequent career) is one of the few "classic" fields for which university was actually intended. if i am not a well-rounded person, then i cannot do my job to the best of my ability. that is not the case with all people, but it is the case with me. therefore, I did not take issue with a single one of the classes i was required to take. every one of them broadened my world view in one way or another. your mileage may vary.
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Originally Posted By Scaldfish:
Originally Posted By absael:
However, you still haven't answered the question that I intended to ask: Do you think that your major required too many general education courses, or that it limited some general education electives to areas that did not contribute to what you consider a properly well-rounded education?


well, my major (and subsequent career) is one of the few "classic" fields for which university was actually intended. if i am not a well-rounded person, then i cannot do my job to the best of my ability. that is not the case with all people, but it is the case with me. therefore, I did not take issue with a single one of the classes i was required to take. every one of them broadened my world view in one way or another. your mileage may vary.
OK thanks, this is exactly the kind of answer I was looking for.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:20:34 PM EST
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Originally Posted By rdblan2:
I just had a mail server crash here at work. Since the school made me read all that Shakespeare, I started speaking in tongues and blurted out some Taming of the Shrew to management, as well as the server, and it has magically spun back online.

For this reason, that class was not at all a waste of my time or money.

Wait...

Yes, yes it was.
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You were able to reference some of Shakespeare's work while making a joke.

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Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:22:24 PM EST
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Originally Posted By NoStockBikes:


You were able to reference some of Shakespeare's work while making a joke.

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Originally Posted By NoStockBikes:
Originally Posted By rdblan2:
I just had a mail server crash here at work. Since the school made me read all that Shakespeare, I started speaking in tongues and blurted out some Taming of the Shrew to management, as well as the server, and it has magically spun back online.

For this reason, that class was not at all a waste of my time or money.

Wait...

Yes, yes it was.


You were able to reference some of Shakespeare's work while making a joke.

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LOL.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:22:31 PM EST
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Originally Posted By NoStockBikes:


You were able to reference some of Shakespeare's work while making a joke.

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Originally Posted By NoStockBikes:
Originally Posted By rdblan2:
I just had a mail server crash here at work. Since the school made me read all that Shakespeare, I started speaking in tongues and blurted out some Taming of the Shrew to management, as well as the server, and it has magically spun back online.

For this reason, that class was not at all a waste of my time or money.

Wait...

Yes, yes it was.


You were able to reference some of Shakespeare's work while making a joke.

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Yes, now that ~$3K and ~3 months hardly seems wasted at all.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:23:21 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/27/2013 1:24:23 PM EST by TDIllini]
Too many f***ing gen-ed classes in my opinion. The quality of the gen-ed courses in particular (very large, well respected university) was inferior in every way to what I had gone through in high school.

I think gen-ed's are a way to make students pay more for their piece of paper (diploma) than they really need to. If you want to be well rounded, you can easily accomplish that on your own.

-EDIT- Plenty of gen-eds are full of commie TA's and professors too, sociology in particular.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:24:31 PM EST
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Originally Posted By skinny79:
A college degree isn't a technical certification. It includes the implication that the recipient is somewhat well rounded.
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It's fucking stupid. People are taking out a ridiculous amount of loans for these 4 year degrees, but 1.5 - 2 years of it is useless. The history of rock and roll class I took really helped me become a doctor.
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:25:15 PM EST
I was very uninterested in most of the General Ed classes. They ped to apathy which led to poor grades and ultimately me leaving school.


I plan on going back, now that I have a job that will support the cost, but it blew my advisors mind that I was getting straight As in all my Major related 3&400 classes, but was failing North Dakota History 101.

Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:26:58 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/27/2013 1:31:04 PM EST by CaverX]
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Originally Posted By skinny79:


Bad example, don't IT guys have to study up on Logic?
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Originally Posted By skinny79:
Originally Posted By Infantry26:
Originally Posted By rdblan2:
Yes. Why did I need to read Shakespeare for an IT degree?

Completely agree..."well rounded ...yada yada."

In other countries you don't waste time (money) keeping the 20 professors of philosophy employed.


Bad example, don't IT guys have to study up on Logic?


I would say the philosophy courses were actually some of the more valuable general studies classes I took.

Science, and problem solving in general is often not just about being able to regurgitate some piece of knowledge, but in how you approach a problem and what questions you ask.

I didn't have to take any history classes, or biology 100. Tried to get out of an English class, scored really high but they rejected my essays. I would say about half the English classes I took were just a vehicle for the instructor to push their personal agenda.
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