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What ever happened to studying the old fashioned way?

Answers:1   |   LastAnswerAt:2010.10  

Asked at 2010.10.13 00:41:07
I have been noticing that more and more kids (including college age) are resorting to chemical crutches to 'increase their studying efficiency'. I guess 'good' study habits have morphed into a 'gimme some pills so I can study' type of studying. I was, and I'm sure the more mature members here were, taught how to study early on by our parents. Comments?
answer genrethan  Answered at 2010.10.13 00:41:07
This is (obviously) a multifaceted question. As far as academic doping, it's one more way of cheating which students have done for as long as there has been education...that's not justifying it, it's simply stating a reality. Yes, there are those with a genuine need for psycho-stimulants to control attention/concentration deficits, but it is over-diagnosed and feigned to obtain these medications.

Education has changed. Some courses are still hard (will organic chemistry ever be a reason a college student cites as their reason to live?), but some of these courses are packing more content into less time without regard for the fact that students learning abilities and study habits are getting worse. This get more done in less time attitude is understandable because the U.S. is now 12th in the world in it's science education. The answer may be to increase the rate of education, but without addressing the fact that the majority of students have poor study habits, low expectations for themselves ("I just want to pass" or "I don't want to be a 'nerd' or interrupt my social life," etc.), treat school as a luxury they are forced to endure rather than a serious job, and the culture shift from seeing elders, especially teachers as persons to respect and admire to just public servants there to cater to them and make sure they pass, it will not stem the tide.

As much as technology helps, it can hurt as well. Technology only helps those who are serious students, whether by enhancing the learning experience, to assisting disabled students learn when they would otherwise be denied an education. Students who aren't serious are not benefited, rather they gain scads of new avenues to ease their studies and still pass a class without ever learning a thing. Example: Compare a student with serious social anxiety being assisted by distance education telecomm. tech. with a student who "writes" a 15 page "research" paper in one night with the assistance of pharmaceutical technology (prescribed speed), copy-and-pasting from the ever reliable Wikipedia, and then doing blind citations to make it look well researched. When you speak of the way things used to be, I don't think we could have imagined that students would be getting through school in this manner, and because they are doing it this way, we all pay the price.

Yes, I too was taught by my parents and my teachers that you sit down at a desk with a bright light, plenty of pencils, the textbooks, and a stack of notebooks. No music, no relaxing in bed with the laptop doing online studying with Facebook, IM, cell phone texting, calls, friends...etc. Humans aren't great multitaskers, but we pump the kids up with too much self-esteem, that they feel they can do anything and it should just come to them, then the teachers are blamed when the grades don't pass muster.

To much relative education standards--if the child feels good about themselves, that's all that matters. There is a relaxation in absolutes, even those of minimum attainment.

So of course, there will be the segment that has the chemical crutch, but my goodness that segment used to be small, relegated to individuals who knew no better or were in the minority as most had proper study skills--now it truly has exploded. We're losing talent, we're intelligence, we're losing our competitive edge...we're losing our future, both literally and figuratively.
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