Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Schooling vs. Education

I'm sure that each one of us heard, at least once - and probably more than once - the association made between a college degree and lots of worldly knowledge, and true wisdom and capability. Don't get me wrong; I'm far from saying college is all evil. During my college years, I met some wonderful people, and learned many things that can be a blessing to my family when, God-willing, I will become a wife, mother and homemaker; but I don't think it's necessary at all to become a skilled, intelligent, talented and capable woman.

The entire spirit on our campus was so ambitious, competitive and self-absorbed. What about modesty? I studied in an almost girls-only class, and I still had to struggle against negative influence almost every day. At times, I felt like shutting my ears so I don't have to listen to stories about immoral behavior. To sum it up, college contributed some to my knowledge, but little to my wisdom and real-life skills.

I did learn valuable things, but I think it was more despite, than thanks to the teaching methods. I'm sorry, but cramming my short-term memory with facts, spitting it all out during an exam, then forgetting all about it isn't exactly what I consider effective learning. Maybe it works for some. It didn't work for me and for many others. Yes, I handled it. Yes, my grades were generally good. But what about knowledge? All the time, I had a feeling I'm stuck inside a huge industry that cares only about one thing: stuffing my head with theories, hauling me towards an exam, then allowing me to forget everything I learned.

When we try to examine a certain method of education, be it college, professional courses, or any other thing, we should ask ourselves the following question: how well does it prepare us for the role we want to dedicate our lives too (this goes, of course, for men as well as women)? How much wiser will we emerge from it?

And while I'm reflecting on this subject, here's a wonderful topic-related video on 'Visionary Daughters'


Laura H. said...

Glad to be back! I will observe for the rest of the month. Looking forward to more of your wonderful posts!

Laura H

DelightinginHim said...

I totally agree with what you were saying in this article and in some ways it makes more thankful that I chose not to attend college. Honestly, I feel I have remembered way more from my homeschooling years than the little I've learned from other teachers in a more traditional classroom setting.

Anna S said...

Delightinginhim: I, too, learned much more on my own than during lectures with a 100 other people that were always interrupted by someone's questions.

Rebekah S. said...

Amen, Anna! Thank you for a wonderful post!

Emily said...

I definitely understand your point Anna. In very few ways did university or school help train me to become a wife and mother - and yes there are so many things that I could've easily learnt from self-study than in a classroom.

However, it is only now that I am truly beginning to appreciate what my degree taught me - all the little academic style stuff like referencing properly and even writing itself - as I have been editing and getting my book on modesty ready for publishing. I am really grateful for my school education - although it was certainly far from perfect or godly - and I know that I definitely couldn't have learnt some of the stuff on my own as I could having my tutor explain it. There are many things I feel God is calling me to be - a wife and a mother yes, but also (and especially as I am single) an author, a teacher (not the school kind lol), a businesswoman, and so on. Most of these things have stemmed from my schooling education, and I don't think I would be half as good at them had I not gone to the schools and university I did.

Nevertheless, that is because that was God's plan for me. For others it will be completely homeschooling and self-taught or family-taught education. For others it will be a mixture. And for some it will be like mine. It all depends on what God has individually called us to do in life.

In fact, sometimes it's not even about the education but about being a light in the darkness and reaching other students with the gospel!

Hope that all makes sense! I really do see your point Anna, but I also wanted to defend schooling - because if that is what God ordains for someone, then it is good and right because it is part of His plan :).

P.S. Although I disagree with most of what Visionary Daughters teach, I enjoyed that video you posted - Vauddie Baucham is great. He shaped a lot of my thinking about marriage and family through some sermons I heard of his a couple of years ago.

Francisca said...

Hello, I was looking for material for a paper I´m going to write in my educational class and I found your blog. I want to share my experience which is very different from yours.
College made realize that Good is closer than what I thought...
When I just started I had a lot of prejudices against people that don´t share the same ideals as me, I thought that only christians could be a good fit for me. I was SO wrong bacause I meet amazing people that in spite of having a different religion or not religion at all had plenty of love to give to others and were very idealistic.
For me college made grew up intellectually but most importantly spiritually. I left all my prejudices aside to discover the love of God in everybody. I also learned a lot of things, including english that allows me to read and answer this bog right now.
I'm from Chile and I currently live in the USA. I have found that college here is not so different as in my country, young people are the same everywhere, it is just a matter to open your heart to discover the beauty in everybody.