We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
We have often opined here that the traditional BA may have outlived its usefulness, keeps the average kid out of the real world too long, and has become so degraded in its rigor as to be of little meaning other than as an expensive, Wizard of Oz credential. A quote from Charles Murray's piece in the WSJ (h/t, Flares):
Outside a handful of majors -- engineering and some of the sciences -- a bachelor's degree tells an employer nothing except that the applicant has a certain amount of intellectual ability and perseverance. Even a degree in a vocational major like business administration can mean anything from a solid base of knowledge to four years of barely remembered gut courses.
The solution is not betterdegrees, but no degrees. Young people entering the job market should have a known, trusted measure of their qualifications they can carry into job interviews. That measure should express what they know, not where they learned it or how long it took them. They need a certification, not a degree.
The BA degree was created for scholars, and as a foundation for the professions. It meant that you knew Latin and Greek, probably German and French, the sciences, math, and history - but it mostly meant that you wanted to be a scholarly person who intended to study stuff for the rest of your life. I think I'm on safe ground in saying that that is no longer the case. Education is such a huge, entrenched industry today that things are unlikely to change, but it's still worthwhile thinking about rational alternatives.
Absolutely agree. We've all known this was the case for some time, now. Most kids go to college to get a piece of paper that says they can work in a white collar job -- their motives have very little to do with scholarly intentions or ambitions. The colleges and (most) Universities are only too happy to go along with it all and hand out "degrees" that amount to ridiculously overpriced vocational certificates.
At many of the large public universities most of the teaching is done by pitifully underpaid graduate assistants, most of whom are foreign graduate students with limited command of English in a speaking environment.
Yes, the earnest future white collar workforce (ha! most of whom focus on the fun of being out of direct parental review for the first time, not exactly scholars) really get a bang for their parents' bucks, or their own student loans, or both.
And the universities often barely mention undergraduate education when discussing their missions and proudest accomplishments.