Tuesday, September 2, 2014

'Aspiring Adults Adrift'
(Inside Higher Ed)

     In their 2011 book Academically Adrift, authors Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa, argued that colleges are failing to educate students. Many undergraduates, the authors wrote, are "drifting through college without a clear sense of purpose," with more than a third of students not demonstrating any significant improvement in learning over four years in college.
     Now Arum and Roksa have revisited a large sampling of those same undergraduates for a new book examining how they've fared after graduation. They're no longer students, the authors write, but they are still adrift.
. . .
     Many four-year universities attend to students' social adjustment rather than developing their characters, [Arum] said, allocating resources toward what will attract teenagers to their campuses rather than what will help them learn. Campuses cater to satisfying consumer preferences instead of providing rigorous academics and connecting what students learn to the real world, Arum and Roksa write. Like students and aspiring adults, they argue, colleges and universities are also adrift.
. . .
     Many of those living at home and looking for skilled, full-time work were still financially dependent on their parents, and were "meandering" to and from potential career paths and jobs.
. . .
     "Large numbers of students today do not apply themselves or develop academic skills in college," the authors write. "Thirty-six percent of full-time college students reported studying alone less than five hours per week."....

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

From an earlier thread:

"Most youngsters today, that is those who have bought into that whole gangland style of ghetto behavior and speech, that has been pushed by the Hollywood left and their culture industry, are just not employable.

One can't behave and speak badly and expect to have a job handed to them. For profit colleges have been using their acceptance of bad behavior to increase their enrollments, like in the Grand Canyon U. commercial where you see cheerleaders flashing gang signs. Very attractive to young, wanabe gangsters, indeed. Disappointing for a Christian school."

College has become more about accepting and embracing pop culture to cater to our youth instead of challenging them intellectually. Nonprofit schools are equally culpable. Why should a community college need a marketing department?

Roy Bauer said...

9:27, I am no fan of "gangland style," as you call it, but you seem to view young people's embrace of this "style" as a crucial problem. I can speak about my own students. To the extent that they embrace this style, it is a very superficial embrace. They do not seem to carry guns; I've seen no indication that they are preoccupied with drug culture; they don't say or do "gang" things in class. They're about as polite as they've always been.
Yes, they do seem to like tattoos. So what? To me, students' tattoos stand out about as much as does their shoeware--which is to say not at all.
9:27, you need to adjust your thoughts to a closer approximation of reality. Watching Fox News, are we?

Anonymous said...

Please gain a better (or any) understanding of gang signs. The cheerleaders are not flashing gang signs; they are "flashing" the spirit sign for their school, which just happens to be the same as the University of Texas Longhorns. Hook 'em, Horns.

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