Thursday, March 1, 2012

Looking at Liberal Arts Education to Advance the Future of Education

By Sean Scarpiello

As society pushes to bring a better education to more people, certain educational institutions will benefit while others will struggle. One of the providers of education which may struggle in this transition from traditional education to the future of education is liberal arts schools. Liberal arts colleges are often criticized for being expensive and for lacking a wide range of majors. These drawbacks of a liberal arts college education make such colleges inefficient which is why many education professionals feel that there will be less and less of these colleges in the future. Is it smart to scrap the ideals of a liberal art education or can we learn something from them to incorporate into the future of education?

I am personally an advocate of a liberal arts education. They have many more pros than cons, but overall provide a better education than larger universities. First off, liberal art colleges typically have smaller class sizes which are very important. Professors are able to track each individual’s progress and make sure students are coming to class. This cannot be said about massive universities where classes are held in huge lecture halls and the professors rarely learn the names of all their students. Also, smaller class sizes mean that students in class get to interact with each other. This again is a huge benefit not only for the education aspects of college, but also the social aspects of education. Being able to interact well with others in the workplace is vital, especially as the average worker has more and more different jobs. Education cannot always be about memorization of facts, but it should include the application and analysis of this knowledge. Larger universities struggle at making their students communicate the information they are studying.

This lack of communication in the education field leads to an antisocial aspect of society. Already there is a lack of person to person communication due to technology like Facebook, emails, and texts messages. A liberal arts education forces students into an uncomfortable atmosphere and subjects, thus allowing students to work their way through problems together, much like in the workplace. As we enter this new era of education where masses of people are being educated at low costs, it is import to try and incorporate the communication aspects of education. In all colleges, students learn more outside the classroom than inside the classroom. In computer based education, it is often easy to avoid dealing and interacting with people, an aspect of all occupations.

One way to incorporate communication into education for the masses is by having video conferences or debates through the internet. The program could be set up much like a classroom in a liberal arts college where a professor moderates the discussion. Also through this, there will be a flow of ideas around students. Students can learn a lot from listening to others because everyone brings their own perspective to the table. This allows students to begin thinking outside of the box and critically.

Overall, liberal arts colleges may not be the most efficient, but we still need to keep the ideals of a liberal arts education around as we transition into a farther reaching educational system. One such example would include the communication and interpersonal aspects of education, which can easily be overlooked in this digital age.

1 comment:

teamfaisal said...

I agree with you . art is one of great field of education that should be implement