Dixie Darr

Learning vs. Education

In creativity, degrees without debt, Learning, Learning Tools, work on October 5, 2010 at 8:46 am

Universities are full of knowledge; the freshmen bring a little in and the seniors take none away, and knowledge accumulates.” Lawrence Lowell

Okay, I admit I’m a cynic about education. While I’m a passionate lifelong learner, I’m skeptical about how much learning comes from institutionalized education. Too much bureaucracy. Too much compartmentalization. Too much homogenization. Too little time for reflection and curiosity and pursuit of passion.

I started this blog to show people how they could learn outside the walls of higher education. I don’t want to discourage people from attending college because I know good things (like self-confidence) can come from having a college education. However, I think the world of higher education is broken. Colleges have priced themselves out of the reach of too many people and become places for the elite or those who are willing to take on enormous debt before they’re old enough to know what they really want to do with their lives. It’s crazy.

I see too many stories about people who graduate at age 22 with $80,000 of debt before they even start their adult lives.

In our world of globalization and the Internet, it is now possible to bypass the traditional sources of higher education and save both time and money in the process. DIY U: Edupunks, Edupreneurs, and the Coming Transformation of Higher Education by Anya Kamanetz provides a comprehensive overview of some innovative and forward-thinking options, but even more have  appeared since her book was published earlier this year.

So, I’ll be looking at some of those and profiling creative learners in my posts here. To get started, take a look at this video by the author of Brain Rules 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School by John Medina.


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