Robert Hurst raises an important point about the relationship between education and economics. The US educational system (particualrly the university system) is so firmly entrenched within the marketplace that questions of the "educational value" of specific classes (like "Film Studies" for example), have become redundant. Here's my solution: All those who attend universities as a conduit to the world of highly paid, high-powered jobs, should just pay their 4 years tuition up front (it's an investment right? Like and IRA or playing the stock market?) and be handed a degree that allows them to take their position within the elite workforce. Those who go to university to get an education should stick around and take classes that are challenging, force them to ask questions and make them squirm occasionally. I've no time for students who moan about classes (or individual "texts") that contribute nothing to their "education" (read: earning power). They make me puke. What the hell happened to this country? Bill Elliott ____________________________________________________________________ ORIGINAL MESSAGE > In discussing conflicts between students and instructors over course > materials we also need to look at the evolving role of the university and > its relationship to students. At > this university many students are interested solely in getting a degree to > help their earning capability - which I'm sure surprises no one. The > result is at times a student who is put out at the idea of core > requirements let alone material that may challenge his/her views. > > In this sense the university is serving two functions which become clearer > all the time - one as an institution of higher learning, the other as a > glorified trade school. We can see some other evidence of this trend in > the talk of a "fast track" degree, which would enable a student to finish > in three years without wasting any time on courses outside their interest. > This is not necessarily to disparage today's student; getting a good, > cheap degree is an economic imperative to students who know that a BA or > BS has become what a high school diploma was a few decades ago. > > So into the pot of intolerence and prejudice you can also toss money > matters, which unfortunately become more important each year. In a society > that does not value education for its own sake it is diffcult to argue for > what many consider a watse of time.