The Big Think

August 31, 2010

Lifelong Learning

Filed under: Education — jasony @ 6:38 pm

“… in times of rapid change, it is paradoxically more useful to immerse yourself in the basics and the classics than to try to keep up with the latest developments and hottest trends. You can be almost 100% sure that the hot theories making waves in academia today will be forgotten or superseded in twenty years — but fifty years from now people will still be reading and thinking about the classic texts that have shaped our world. Use your college years to ground yourself in the basic great books and key ideas and values that will last.

For the same reason, don’t worry too much about getting specific skills at this stage. You are going to keep learning new skills all your life and you are going to find many of your skills obsolete as time goes on (when I was a kid I was very good at operating something called a mimeograph machine). What you want to do now is to develop your ability to learn.

It’s a lot of work, but don’t panic; you are not going to get this all done in four years. Becoming educated is a lifelong project; you can’t turn your mind off and stop reading books when you finish college and expect to get anywhere.”

Good advice for college students (or students of all ages) on the coming Education Bubble.

1 Comment »

  1. Great advice — most of this is stuff that you and I have been saying for years. The only thing I’d disagree with is the part where he makes this seem like anything other than a correction: people will have to work really hard to do well in the future, but the implication that they’ll have to work harder than, say, our great-great-grandparents worked would have gotten a nice big chortle from our great-great-grandparents.

    Comment by barrybrake — September 5, 2010 @ 11:51 pm

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