Skip to comments.Will Dumping Math Requirements Increase College Grad Rates? / worthless college degrees
Posted on 08/23/2012 5:31:40 PM PDT by wintertime
HetchingerEd is offering a rather radical proposal to increase the number of American students who graduate college: dump math. Specifically, the argument is that since many college students, a disproportionately large number of them of an African-American or Hispanic descent, are unprepared to tackle college-level mathematics courses, they might be stymied by a requirement that all those receiving a degree from a particular institution must pass the freshman version of the course.
A fifth of students entering a four-year college dont have the needed math skills to pass the course and are forced into remediation. Nearly half of community college freshmen find themselves in a similar situation. This delay makes it much less likely that they will be able to graduate on time or graduate at all. Only a tenth of community college students who take remedial college courses finish their college programs in 3 years, and only a third of four-year students complete theirs in 6 years.
Those statistics come from a report on remediation published in April by Complete College America. The reports numbers suggest that math requirements may be the primary obstacle to graduation for many students: In many states, a larger percentage of students enroll in remedial math courses than in remedial English courses.
These numbers ignited a debate among education experts with many calling for better algebra preparedness in high school, while an increasingly loud minority suggesting that colleges do away with universal math requirements altogether.
(Excerpt) Read more at educationnews.org ...
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Bah! When I started coding we didn’t even have 1’s; only 0’s. And we were grateful, GRATEFUL to even have that.
1912 Eighth Grade Examination for Bullitt County Schools
Take this 1931 8th grade test (you will probably flunk)
My wife is a RN, and back when she was in school for Nursing, she said that a LOT of the students failed because of the Math alone. Luckily, she was always great in Math, and it was a breeze for her. I looked at it, and I could fully understand how it could be very difficult for some(I'm not great with Math myself).
Ding Ding Ding - We have a winner.
This is the reason employers are now demanding internships.
Personally, if I were an employer I would ask for SAT or ACT scores. ( I retired a few years ago and no longer hire people.)
Historically, little of the work done in the U.S. needed a college degree, and even today, most of what a person learns about a job is "on the job". A solid eighth grade education was more than sufficient for my parent's generation ( born 1913) and should be enough today, coupled (possibly) with selected college level course work. Employers should dump the college degree requirement and merely use SAT scores and ( possibly) a few specific college courses.
Charles Murray, author of "The Bell Curve" recommends dumping the majority of college degrees and moving toward certifiable qualifying exams. A tremendous amount of course work is already available for *free* online. What is missing is a way to prove to an employer that the information has been mastered. Certifiable qualifying exams, SAT and/or ACT scores, and internships could prove to an employer that an applicant was motivated, focused, and intelligent enough to do the job.
Just imagine how many high paying jobs are available for a B.A. in Afro-American or Latino Studies (with or without a math requirement)? Answer: zero, zip, nada, none.
Better that high school grads go into a trade school or other professional training that doesn't need a college degree. One thing for certain, you won't be paying for a worthless $100,000+ piece of paper with an embossed seal.
Please... we DO NOT need to further dumb down education in this country. We’ve already dumbed it down to the point that Wendy’s has trouble find people who can reliably take orders and run the cash register. Kids graduating today have mush for brains. It’s sorrowful.
We need to start building education back up. The sooner the better.
The only thing that should be graded in America’s schools...including its universities...is self esteem.Grads with high self esteem will be able to compete very well with the Chinese,Japanese,South Koreans and Germans.
Probably OK unless the degree is in mathematics, statistics, any quantified science, medicine, engineering, computer programming or quantified business major, including accounting. You could dispense with the GBS/GBA requirements for those, but not with the math, physics, and core courses. Simply impossible to do without those. Sorry, but people doing science and technology need to be well-educated. Aptitude or general intelligence (which is mostly what SAT measures) are not enough.
My father and mother were born in 1913. Few of this generation graduated from high school let along went to college, but look at the health, wealth, and fun produced by this ( greatest) generation. If college was not required for most of the work done then ( except for some very specific professions) then the same is true today.
Sitting here laughing. Very cute!
IMO, a better choice is to drop the algebra and trigonometry for most college majors and replace it with accounting, statistics and probability. These math skills are most often used in the real world, while still adhering to the “you need to learn math in college” standard.
Their should be “There”. Oops!
I absolutely agree with you, and so does Charles Murray, that some professions absolutely require a university setting.
But? ....Do you think that everything those in the science professions study needs to be acquired on a campus. There are AP ( advanced placement) tests now given on the high school level that are fully accepted by many colleges. There is a wide variety of AP tests offered.
One young man in my church has a masters in chemical engineering and he complete nearly two years of college credit by taking AP courses ( a certifiable qualifying exam). It saved him a ton of money and **time**.
“IMO, a better choice is to drop the algebra and trigonometry....”
I never thought I’d actually use algebra in day-to-day life, but I was proven very wrong. I had to use it regularly for years, and still occasionally do. Trig. on the other hand, I’ve never used. Every college student should know at least basic algebra.
“Specifically, the argument is that since many college students, a disproportionately large number of them of an African-American or Hispanic descent, are unprepared to tackle college-level mathematics courses, they might be stymied by a requirement that all those receiving a degree from a particular institution must pass the freshman version of the course.”
So let’s admit it, blacks are a bunch of IDIOTS and should not be held to the standards that white America is held to. But consider this:
My kids went to Christian schools here in Houston. They were years ahead of their grade level (since we taught them before entering schools and then on the side), but they had to compete against this no-name BLACK school, Imani, in spelling and math Olympics. These kids literally, at least in Houston, BLEW THE DOORS OFF of white Christian School kids. My kids managed to beat them, but only because of their education outside of schools.
One other thing worth mentioning. These Imani kids knew how to cheer for and support their classmates. They also knew how to behave and put the whities to shame when it was time to be quiet and respectful.
I realize that Jesse, Shelia, and the rest just wish these kids would go away - but some of us are VERY PROUD of them.
A better choice would be to drop college attendance completely and take accounting, statistics, and probability if needed by the job.
Think about it. Why does the Marriott Hotel check-in clerk need a college degree, accounting, statistics, or probability unless, ( by demonstrating focus and dedication) she/he would be identified as someone who should be groomed for management. A solid eighth grade education should be more than enough to do the job.
Welcome to the warped world of the Pooblik Skool Collective.
A godless, single-payer,compulsory use, compulsory funded, prison-like, socialist-entitlement, and price-fixed cartel! Managed by the People's Collective elected by the Voting Mob! ( Misnamed School Board)
“A solid eighth grade education should be more than enough to do the job.”
My grandfather had an 8th grade education and was married to a school teacher. I’m guessing his education was a heck of a lot better than what we’re graduating today.
No, no. Men are rational. Women are irrational. If men are real, women are imaginary.
You bet! And....The majority of his generation attended one-room schools.
So?...Think of a nice cozy one room school where all the parents know each other well and the teacher, and then compare that to your local public school that looks like a minimum security prison. Many of the towns in my state have elementary schools with FOUR first grades. What is that? A factory? A prison?
My son got his B.S. in Mech. Eng. from the University of Illinois. He had to pay an extra $3K in tuition each year. The concept is that an engineering lab costs a lot more to build and run than a library. Also, an engineering professor can make more as an engineer than an English professor can at ... whatever else an English professor might do for a living.
OTOH, he got a job that paid $55K/year + a car and overtime when he graduated.
And some men are imaginary.
I learn something new every day on Free Republic. I had no idea.
“The majority of his generation attended one-room schools.”
And they learned using chalk and slate. Parent’s didn’t have to sign a waiver to pay $1000 if the personal lap top was damaged, they didn’t need a computer lab, they didn’t have reams of paper in all the colors of the rainbow, as well as paint, colored pencils, magic markers, or paper towels, Kleen-x, etc. How did we ever manage to get where we are? When I got the list from my daughter’s school of what was expected to be sent for the “collective,” I had more than a few expletives I wanted to write on the paper and send back. They aren’t schools, they’re social engineering centers run by the government funneling money to unions. If we hadn’t been in bankruptcy thanks to Bush and being directly targeted by the government, she’d never have stepped foot in a public school.
And they learned using chalk and slate. Parent
“And they learned using chalk and slate. Parent”
But I repeat myself. Still good advice- parent your children.
I have a degree in chem Eng from a world renowned university. I was required among other math related courses to take a course called ‘Higher Math for Engineers and Physicists’. In my many years of industrial work I came away with the idea that there is certainly a a place/purpose for having the reasoning capability of the higher math. However, there is probably just as many places/purposes where a much lower level of math by some ‘technician’ is needed to get a project successfully completed. There is no substitute for coordinated levels of mathematical capabilities.
Did you have t-shirt that read-
“Chem Es Do It In Packed Beds”
That was my personal favorite college t-shirt back in the 70’s.
I have an abacus which my father taught me how to use for simple math calculations when I was very young (a long, long time ago). My eleven-year-old grandson who spent a week with me while his parents were out of the city saw it on the table and asked what it was so spent time on several days teaching him how it works. His father, who received straight A’s in all math and physics classes was impressed. Grandson is going to take it to school this fall and teach kids in his class.
BTW, I still have my slide ruler. Didn’t like using it when I had to. If ammo weren’t so expensive, I might also consider putting a bullet through mind. Trig and calculus were difficult for all my female college classmates. Maybe because women think they have to understand and analyze everything right down to a gnat’s ass. Once I figured out you just do it and move on, it was somewhat less difficult.
Eliminate any course that requires effort and an IQ over 75 and Obama sons', illegal aliens' and welfare parasites' graduation rates and college degrees will soar.
And they will all be more than qualified to serve in government jobs.
For Obama voters.
People do not understand the concept of percentage. They cannot even look at raw numbers and realize that a drop from 44,000 to 31,000 is not a greater than 50% decrease.
Come now, there are hundreds of thousands of jobs for such folks in government bureaucracies, academia, and large corporations.
I googled the Ohio State University web site for the word "diversity". There were over 80,000 hits. Within the first ten pages you can find the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, the Diversity Services Office, the Vice Provost for Outreach and Engagement, the Diversity Council, the Diversity & Identity Studies Collective, the Diversity Counseling & Consultation Service, the Multicultural Center, the Faculty Diversity Committee, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Diversity Catalyst Team, the Faculty of Color Caucus, the Diversity Enhancement Program, and separate diversity offices for the colleges of medicine, law, optometry, engineering, business, nursing, education, arts & sciences, and public health.
Hundreds of jobs right there, by golly.
Millions for "diversity"...but not one cent for math.
No, no, not sell! Just give it to them. Why bother going through all this time, fuss, and expense. Just ask minorities what they want their degree to be, and give them the diploma.
College has become a joke now anyway. Have you heard any college athletes speaking lately? Many of them can’t even speak proper English. Just give them the degree and be done with it. Employers must find a different way to assess an applicant’s skills and education. Maybe soon we will abandon our overrated colleges and let kids learn on the job working as interns or apprentices. Makes more sense than what we are doing now.
And...back in those days, fifty years ago, there were complaints that an MIT-style education in science and math produced an exam-passing machine that couldn't think his way out of a paper bag if there were no way to quantify it.
Seems quaint in restrospect, doesn't it?
Agreed. A bunch of those students might even pass. There was a report that colleges make money from remedial courses and lose money on some of the college-level courses. Who knows how many of those students really need to take remedial classes... No doubt, they're performing poorly on the entrance exams, but maybe once in class they'll remember what they learned in high school.
Many eons ago, I was one of those students - twice ordered into remedial math, first at a community college and later at a university - after being away from school for awhile. Thanks to some fast-talking, I was allowed to register for college level math, anyway, and I earned an A in both courses.
The exact opposite is happening: The money from remedial classes is subsidizing some of the higher, college-level courses that are big money losers for the college. I wish I could find the study posted here a few years ago, but a search doesn't bring it up. It had to do with certain courses - such as lab sciences, if I remember correctly - being money losers for colleges, while remedial courses brought in more money.
My 16yo son has been banking credits in math at a local college. So I hear ya' on the added fees. It would be worse, though, to have to pay hundreds for a course that carries no credit.
***SNERK*** This is the story this week?
The above is the dismissive remark of someone who claims to be a professional public school teacher.
Well....Hopefully, some lawyers, who are “meaner than a junkyard dog”, will pick up on this.
It is, in my opinion, criminally fraudulent to award grades, make our passing report cards, and award government high school diplomas to students who are illiterate and innumerate or barely so. These are government documents. Teachers and principals who do this are lying to the student, the parents, the taxpayers, the school board, and the legislators. It is also malpractice.
Teachers and principals want to be considered “professionals”. In any other profession to submit government forms that are **deliberately** false is a CRIME. It is also malpractice. Other professionals are personally sued and have their licenses to practice revoked.
Where are the attorney who will go after these teachers and principals and the **personal** wealth of these government workers? They do have malpractice insurance.
It shows the education of the writer when the ‘from’ is dropped in the first sentence. I couldn’t read any more after that.
The above is the whining of a failed "Medical Professional" who used the public school system when it was convenient. This person would rather sit around and do nothing after having used the system to their own ends. It should also be noted that their own children view them as so extreme that they have sent their own children to public and parochial schools.
If this person had a shred of dignity they would reimburse the system for all the money that they sucked from the public teat and now whine about.
How about ponying up some cash to one of these lawyers so they can take the case. maybe have some of your home schooling allies start a fund to pay the lawyer for their services.
>>The above is the whining of a failed “Medical Professional” who used the public school system when it was convenient.<<
We who homeschool PAY for the public school system. We complain about the substandard education given. There is a reason for that. (In fact, in owning a home since 1989, and having parents who owned a home since 1961 and sending all of us to Catholic School, I would say, my family has paid a whole lot). In the world, the public school education is inadequate. We keep paying into it.
So stating that using the public school system when it was convenient is disingenuous. Using something that we are forced to pay for and using it in hopes that “this time” it will be better, is human nature.
It’s nice to be on the receiving end of the gravy train, however.
And let me add, I’m not going to complain about the dumbing down of the schools. My 12-year-old was just accepted into Rochester College. (along with her sister who is 14) I’ll work on improving the schools once they are squared away.
Quaint but ultimately true in my experience.
In an increasingly distant past life, I directed the research of of more than a few technical PhD students who I would not even consider letting baby sit my Goldfish for the weekend, much less do anything complex like manage the grave yard shift at the local Piggly Wiggly mini mart.
Math and Science knowledge is critical to managing ones life and being a responsible voting citizen in our modern technical society, but without a solid knowledge of History (including Western Civ), Logic, Ethics, Philosophy, the Social Sciences and the full range of other Liberal Arts disciplines.
Even for a highly trained technical professional, in real world design and problem solving, the hard core STEM curriculum primarily allows you supplant your creativity, intuition, project management/organizational skills and design skills or judgment with realistic physical understanding of what you are trying to accomplish and to predict and model the performance of a design before building it.
To combine all of these elements requires a well trained, finely honed critical thinking process to anticipate what needs to be accomplished to produce a successful project and to anticipate potential problems and eliminate or work around those problems as part of the process using sound judgment.
A strong moral compass and a well formed sense of ethics and intellectual honesty is also surprisingly important to getting a complex and difficult job done.
These characteristics are also of major importance to evaluate whether or not the work one is doing is ethical to begin with, whether it will be used in an ethical fashion once it finished, and whether the work will cause harm to damage to individual people or to society in general.
As our advanced technology and advanced tools puts powerful capabilities in a relatively small handful of people to create amazing but potentially problematic or dangerous work products, a strong sense of ethics and the critical thinking skills base a strong sense of morality to make appropriate becomes of utmost importance.
Unfortunately, our Left wing Faculty and Administration would prefer to teach subversive PC drivel and egg their students on to storm the Mall and shout meaningless slogans like “Hey,hey, ho,ho - Western Civ has got go”, the ever popular “We're here, we're Queer - get over it” and the increasingly meaningless, “No Justice, no peace”
Ironically since the Radical Profs and Students have killed the study of History and Western Civ , Logic, Ethics and the study of the works of all those homophobic, misogynistic, racist dead white male oppressors through the ages, they have no grasp or understanding of the concept and true meaning of Justice nor can they understand it's proper place and proper application in a Fair and Just Society.
This is significant because the concept of Justice is fundamental to the Rule of Law and the proper application of the Rules of Law in a Fair and Just Society.
As soon as the understanding of the principals, the moral values,and the sense of right, wrong that form the basis of our shared concept of equity and basic fairness are eroded or revised, the fundamental meaning of Justice is lost, and the Rule of Law becomes increasingly replaced Lawlessness and the Rule of Man and Injustice prevails over Justice.
The destruction of our truly Just System in the pursuit of some false Utopian Justice System based on a distorted, revisionist concept of Justice was a major goal of the Radical Profs. Unfortunately, this new Utopian, revisionist concept of "Justice" forced on us by the radicals most closely resembles the concept of "Injustice" to all of us with a more traditional world view and value system.
A quick review of recent events in our current so called "Justice System" suggests we may be well along in this process.
Having been at ground zero at the birth of the PC movement in the 80’s, I can attest to the fact that the PC movement was fomented, organized and led by the newly tenured Radical Left Wing professors , many of whom had no interest in scholarly or intellectual goals and who instead studied for their PhDs so they could avoid the Draft and organize campus protests and use their academic positions to indoctrinate student to further their political goals.
Now these same Profs who led the PC charge are trying to complete their goals of the destruction of our eduction system and the eduction of a new generation of students who are educated based on radicalization, political indoctrination, and the development of an illogical, emotion driven thought process.
This new concept of eduction is based on a twisted and distorted set of revisionist ethical principals and assumptions which are devoid of any moral,logical, rational foundation and one which is ignorant of several thousand years of historical and cultural background , science, math and other traditional elements of a traditional Liberal eduction.
Just as the Radicals are transforming Justice into Injustice in the pursuit of some abstract, unattainable and Utopian concept of Cosmic Justice, they are also transforming what was once a Liberal Philosophy of Education into a fundamentally Illiberal Philosophy of Education in the name of Radical Liberalism
This new generation of students is increasingly unable to make even basic informed decisions, much less be able to make informed critical decisions and exercise appropriate good judgment in the making and implementing of these decisions.
Our Western Civilization made such enormous progress in such a short period of time in large part because the development of the Philosophy of a Liberal Education.
The wide spread pursuit of a Liberal Education gave birth to the novel in world history focus on concepts of Justice, Freedom, Fairness and Personal Liberty as the basis of new and better form of government, a Government For and By the People.
Our Education Establishment is destroying our tradition of a Liberal Education which is the basic underpinning of our society. They are replacing our Liberal Education with a fundamentally Illiberal Education based a value system that is diametrically oppose to the traditional values of our amazingly successful Liberal Education system.
Students educated in this Illiberal System are losing the basic skills and values understand the merits of our system and defend that system of government against those who wish to tear down our current Government For and By the People that is based on Justice, Freedom, Fairness and Personal Liberty and who wish replace it with a new system that is "Fundamentally Changed"
We run the risk that our new generation of students are so poorly educated, so illogical, so irrational and so thoroughly indoctrinated with false doctrine that they cannot grasp it follows that, by definition -
"Fundamental Change" in a Justice based society is an Injustice based society.
"Fundamental Change" in a Free society is an Unfree society.
"Fundamental Change" in a Fair society is an Unfair society.
"Fundamental Change" in a society based on Personal Liberty is a society with no basis for Personal Liberty.
"Fundamental Change" in a society based on the Rule of Law is a lawless society based on the arbitrary and capricious Rule of Men.
"Fundamental Change" in a society based on Self Determination of elected leaders by vote of the people is a society where the ruling elite are not freely and fairly elected by the people and the people have no peaceful recourse to replace arbitrary, capricious, incompetent or corrupt rulers.
Finally, and most importantly
"Fundamental Change" in a society where the government is based on a Constitution that guarantees that government will based on system where the Government is For and By the People is Government not grounded in any written Constitutional Guarantees, where the Government is not by the people , but by those in power, and where the government is not for the people and answerable to the people, but instead governs to benefit of those in power and their cronies and which answers to no one
The common terms used to describe a government based on such "Fundamental Change" are Tyranny and Dictatorship.
Hope I didn't make too much of an ass of myself in the process.
I guess I feel kind of strongly on this topic.
Absolutely correct, except in Winter's case that is not what was done. Winter freely admitted in this forum that his/ her children went to public school when some family members went on trips or when she/ he was pursuing a medical degree.
And let me add, Im not going to complain about the dumbing down of the schools. My 12-year-old was just accepted into Rochester College. (along with her sister who is 14) Ill work on improving the schools once they are squared away.
Congratulations on that tremendous accomplishment. I went to RIT and I had a friend that went to the U of R both great schools.
Just so I am clear, are you saying you will work on the schools when your children are squared away, or when the schools are? It is not clear from your last sentence.
You realize that transcendental is a subset of irrational, don’t you?
PDE was the pons asinorum for me too.
>>Just so I am clear, are you saying you will work on the schools when your children are squared away<<
I’ve been working all along to get the schools to a better position. I volunteered for MAPSA (the charter organization in my state) and will continue to volunteer after my kids are set. My opinion is, whatever the PARENTS choose, but the actual facts about the quality of the education are fair game. One good teacher or one good school does not the “Education System in America” make. Too often, people think that their good school (or good experience) is the norm. It’s not.
>>Winter freely admitted in this forum that his/ her children went to public school when some family members went on trips or when she/ he was pursuing a medical degree.<<
Personally, I don’t care why anyone utilized Public Schools. My girls did ‘specials’. I pay for them, why not? However, looking at the dumbing down of the schools and pointing at someone else is silly. It’s bigger than a few years or a few months in school. In fact, I would say that using the Public Schools to one’s own advantage is brilliant! Wintertime needed ‘daycare’. The schools were probably glad to get her kids to blow the state required testing scores out of the water. I know mine were. They loved getting my 11-year-old, who was working on 10th grade at home, completing the 7th grade test. That school looked good, and I did the teaching. (actually Switched-on-Schoolhouse and Saxon did. I’m not that smart)
In my state, which has the loosest homeschool laws in the US, the districts have gotten SO smart. They are offering free virtual school + “satellite” classes in churches. If you don’t want your kid in the “Lord of the Flies” atmosphere, you can pick and chose from all of those classes. Choice is what’s important and they are seeing that those homeschoolers are not the enemy. All teachers would be wise to do the same.