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Can America compete: A textbook case of failure

  1. May 16, 2006 #1

    Pengwuino

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    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12705167/

    Damn textbook industry is run like the mob :uhh:
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 16, 2006 #2
    Most people at my school take only about 3 science courses :(

    It's sad when people say they hate chem or say physics is hard or say something else about biology or earth/space science. Most of my closer friends have taken over 6 science courses so far, as have I..... That's how everyone should do it, but nope... :(
     
  4. May 16, 2006 #3
    I've found that the courses i do best in and the ones that I learn the most in are the ones where I never even open a textbook. A good teacher can do far more than a textbook could ever hope to. I think we should stop buying them altogether. I've found that very few students read the textbook anyway, especially the science and math ones, and the ones that do usually just get confused. Then the teacher explains what they've just read and it all makes more sense. Why not just cut out the middle man and give students less homework by teaching them what they need to know in the first place rather than wasting money and time on textbooks that don't help that much in the end anyway?
     
  5. May 16, 2006 #4

    Pengwuino

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    Textbooks have the holy grail it seems: problems! Especially when you get into the higher levels of math, it becomes a pain to make up problems that come out nice. Plus at the high school levels, you really don't have teachers that are even capable of creating their own problems. Hell some teachers are barely qualified to teach the class from a textbook, let alone off the top of their head.
     
  6. May 16, 2006 #5
    That is exactly why i think our nations focus needs to lean more towards getting better teachers.

    As far as problems, for lower lvls it's easy and for higher lvls such as AP you can always get the problems from somewhere else. For example, most of the problems we did in my AP Calculus class came off of old AP tests. If teachers are truely having that hard of a time coming up with problems, maybe the people that write the textbooks should all become teachers.
     
  7. May 16, 2006 #6
    The people writing the books are teachers.

    Some of the people who write textbooks are horrible teachers. I've had two professors who authored the book I used in their classes. One was an awesome professor, and the book was my favorite textbook I've ever used. The other one, was not a particularly good teacher (he's not the most awful either though), and his book is awful.
     
  8. May 16, 2006 #7
    I think half of all high school students taking chemistry and one fourth taking physics is decent. At best that is about three fourths taking a science class. I see nothing wrong with just taking one of them, I know that if I had a choice in high school, I would not have taken biology. Concerning bad text books, teachers can always suggest students seek out other sources.
     
  9. May 16, 2006 #8

    Thats fine, so long as you see nothing wrong with the average education in this country being inferior to what students in other developed countries recieve. Meaning your children are less well prepared to compete in a global job market.
     
  10. May 16, 2006 #9
    At my high school there is a mandate by the school district that students must take Biology I in 9th grade, Chemistry I in 10th, and Physics I in 11th. Therefore, students can take a level-II science course (also an AP course) in 12th grade but a lot of students take the APs sooner or concurrently. It's possible to take AP Chemistry, AP Physics, and AP Biology all at the same time, of course. But there's no one in my school opting out of at least three years of good science. And by good I mean sufficient. The AP courses are where the quality's at.
     
  11. May 16, 2006 #10

    Astronuc

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    I think that statistics may include students taking both chemistry and physics, which may be the majority who take physics, so the fractions are not necessarily additive.

    I took two years of chemistry (junior and AP senior yr), one of physics, and continuous mathematics in high school. I would have gladly taken modern physics/ intro QM if they had offered it in high school.

    I did have one history teacher in high school who was brilliant. The first day of class, he distributed the textbooks, then promptly told us he would not need them, so we should just park the books in our lockers, which we did. Instead he lectured to use in a way that we could not help but learn. He knew his material, and we did outside reading. He was one of the best teachers I've ever had.

    BTW - President Bush’s No Child Left Behind is an unmitigated disaster. Students are being taught to pass standardized tests instead of learning.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2006
  12. May 16, 2006 #11

    loseyourname

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    I only took two science classes in high school - biology and physics. I opted out of chemistry since it wasn't a graduation requirement and I was taking a ton of extra classes every year any way (religion classes, drafting, four years of art, ceramics, and sports every year).

    I don't feel particularly undereducated nor do I feel like I cannot compete in a global job market. I know this is a science-oriented web site, but science is not the be-all end-all of human existence.
     
  13. May 16, 2006 #12

    Pengwuino

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    Yah, i personally don't see how someone can rationally be disappointed that 6 science classes aren't required in high school. I mean think of what art nuts must think. I know i only had to take like 1 or 2 year of art/artish classes. Then again art isn't really a requirement to getting anything in life.
     
  14. May 16, 2006 #13

    Its not so much the number of classes. Its the quality of them. In all fields.
     
  15. May 16, 2006 #14

    Pengwuino

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    It's all based on the teacher; that's what you need to control. It really is unfortunate that the teachers are the ones who, for the most part, can't cut it in a real major or at a real university and become liberal arts majors and get teaching credentials.
     
  16. May 16, 2006 #15
    Lovely generalization pengwuino. :uhh:

    There not? Says who, you?
     
  17. May 16, 2006 #16

    Pengwuino

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    sure is, what do you want, a list of the educational background of 2 million seperate individuals?
     
  18. May 16, 2006 #17
    Yes, do a study, then make a claim; otherwise, don't protest to make claims about teachers as a generalization that you have no clue about.
     
  19. May 16, 2006 #18

    Pengwuino

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    I didn't know you wanted to be a teacher
     
  20. May 16, 2006 #19
    Yeah, I'm going to school your ***. Ba-ha-ha-haaa
     
  21. May 16, 2006 #20

    Pengwuino

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    :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: Your funny cyrus, i don't know why i tried to have you assassinated. give me a hug! :!!) :!!)
     
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