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I advise my students to argue only topics they are willing to change their mind about because arguing with the single minded is an oxymoron. However, I am compelled to reply to Andrew Plato.....
>>One thing you have to keep in mind is that education is a business. Underneath
the Ivory Tower there is money. Places like Harvard and Yale can afford to be
picky because they have tradition that keeps them flush with cash.
However, your average state or community college has to keep churning the
students through the turnstile else go out of business. Certificate programs
are an excellent way to get more paying customers because they offer a lot for
a little time investment. I am sure if you did a cost analysis on a certificate
program, they are probably one of the most profitable services universities
Of course education is a business. And a business doesn't make it for long if the product it sells doesn't work. The product of a school, particularly the smaller two-year colleges you refer to, is a student. If a program at our tech college doesn't meet a certain placement level, and right now it's above 90%, the program closes. I don't imagine that is unique to the college I teach at.
>>Now, we all know that skills do not come from a certificate. They come from
hard-work, intelligence, and experience. There is no short-cut to those things.<<
What if hard work, intelligence and experience were brought to a certificate, both from the instructor's end and the student's end. Wouldn't this facilitate the process of a person becoming a good technical writer? Does the certificate have to be mutually exclusive of personal and independent learning?
>>HA! Advisory boards LOATHE people like me. Like the programs they oversee -
these organizations provide the illusion of action through hours of pointless
babble. Leadership is not the same as consensus. >>
Obviously you feel strongly about the issue of education and technical writing. I look forward to seeing your definition of leadership in action as you work to make technical writing ed better.
General Education Department
Alexandria Technical College