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Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Value of College Education

1- What a College Education Buys:

But the education kids are rewarded for may not be the same education their parents think they are paying for. Economists would say that a college degree is partly a “signaling” device — it shows not that its holder has learned something but rather that he is the kind of person who could learn something. Colleges sort as much as they teach. Even when they don’t increase a worker’s productivity, they help employers find the most productive workers

In recent decades, the biggest rewards have gone to those whose intelligence is deployable in new directions on short notice, not to those who are locked into a single marketable skill, however thoroughly learned and accredited.

2- College Education and The Placebo Effect:

The placebo effect is scientifically established, well-known effect in medicine. Basically, when doctors prescribe a sugar pill (a placebo), a good percentage of patients do get better. Note that while a placebo is just a sugar pill, the effect on the patient is very much real - patients do get better, not just imagine that they get better, so there is no quackery involved. The human mind and the human body have powerful self-healing mechanisms, and these seem to be triggered by the placebo.

3- Education Unbound:

IIT Bombay has a budget of Rs 120 crore a year, of which Rs 100 crore comes from the central government. With 5,000 students, this means a subsidy of Rs 2 lakh per student per year. This is not sustainable and is the key reason why the government system has not expanded. The private sector has to step in, and it has.

When you turn degrees into commodities and anyone can buy one from somewhere, you're going to lower the overall level of education in the population - while those with the pieces of paper hold them up as proof that they are educated. They FEEL educated. The universities are charging for their human capital as much as their teaching prowess. Yes, it is partially selling certification and there is no doubt that many schools engage in this. The value of this certification fades over time, though. The chance to be around so many people who are driven and creative and resourceful at an important time in life does not though, it pays dividends through the years.

3 comments:

  1. once in our department, one guest-speaker has said," Value of education does not lies only in learning everything. But to learn,How to learn anything is more important in this fast evolving
    world."

    ReplyDelete
  2. he was absolutely true amit.. can i know the name of that speaker?

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am not completely sure but I think that he is Proff. G.S.Raju, ex. Director of IT-BHU.

    ReplyDelete

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