Uneducated students?

I just read an article on CNN that all college professors need to read. Click here to read the article. Some researchers did a study on about-to-be college graduates, asking them simple questions that relate to everyday life. Could they calculate a tip? Figure out if they had enough gas to make it to the gas station? The results of this study were surprising to the researchers, but not to me. While at KU, I noticed that in all of my classes, we learned about fascinating and complicated things. But we never took a step back and learned about basic, everyday life things. For example, I took four semesters of Spanish. Once I was finished, I could order a fancy meal at a Spanish restaurant. However, if my house was on fire or my friend collapsed and was not breathing, I would have no idea how to communicate my problem in Spanish. Isn’t being able to say, "Send a fire truck, my house is on fire!" more important than knowing how name all the animals at the zoo? In my psychology classes, I learned all about some fascinating disorders, and what medicines are used to treat them. But I never learned what to do or say if my friend told me they were thinking about committing suicide, or what to say to a grieving mother who just lost her son. These are the things I am more likely to come into contact with in the real world, and yet they were ignored because they were too basic. Unfortunately, my nursing school has this same problem. We spent several hours discussing the environment, yet only spent one hour (which ended up equaling one practice poke per student) on starting IV’s. Hmm… which one is more important to me as a future nurse…?  Well, I have to get back to my reading on the Chaos theory. Somehow, it is going to make me a better nurse. Hopefully it comes in handy when I mess up doing an IV from my lack of practice, which will cause my patient to get upset, which will cause an increase in his blood pressure, which will cause……..

6 thoughts on “Uneducated students?

  1. You are so right. At the high school I attended, I had to take a class called PSL (Personal Social Living) It was a class on all this basic stuff you were talking about. One of the few classes I actually never \’cut\’ LOL!! More schools should have a class like this as a required course.Carrie

  2. Oh, I totally agree. It was the same way for me in college and education classes. They gave you all this theory and "best" practices, but it does nothing for what you actually need to know about the reality of the classroom. I mean, this theory is good and all, but it\’s does nothing in the reality of life. Sometimes, I think they really have it all wrong in colleges in educating us for our professions. Josh

  3. <laughing!!> I\’m NOT going to let Scooter\’s Daddy read this particular entry because he\’s back in school and complaining about relevance! I give him long, dry lectures (I should be a prof!) about how these classes are expanding his mind and helping him to broaden his think path… He especially hated his humanities courses–oh how he hated them!! lol!!! He just didn\’t see how in the world they could be useful! I absolutely agree with you that we need the basic skills, but I\’ll tell you (now that I\’m not in the middle of exams and deadlines) that I LOVED being in the middle of so much stretching–I actually am one of the crazy people who ENJOY all of that "useless" information because it makes me *think* more deeply, more intricately and more roundedly. 😀

  4. Katie,I learned more in the first 6 months of working as an RN than I did in all of my classroom/clinical instruction cumulatively. You will too. We usually learn best by doing and experiencing. I am addicted to your weblog and read it everyday. You are quite a gal and I would bet my next paycheck that you will be an outstanding nurse!

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