Have you ever wondered right when you graduate high school, why there is a need to retake all the same classes that you just learned right when you enter college? When did this start to happen? How is it that students have to take classes all over again in college that they understand completely, just because society says that we need to become “well-rounded individual?” Why can it be that the high school classes are actually for general education purposes and the college classes are to begin the start of a career? Instead, so many years are wasted in college going over the same classes they took in high school. Most students go straight to college out of high school. Upon having to take the same courses just taken in high school, the students can begin to feel the burn out with school. There would be more of an excitement upon graduation high school and starting their dream career degree. If the automatic requirement in taking general education classes right out of high school were to be changed it could benefit the colleges, teachers, job creators and most importantly the students lives and well being. The system should change so that students can start taking career classes straight into college, that actually relate to what they want to do for the rest of their lives.
From a student’s personal perspective, we want to be experts in our field that we have actually signed up for. Not saying that these classes required do not mean anything but why take them all over again when we already have? These classes should be offered to those who are undecided in what major they want to get into, or to students who have very low test scores upon graduating high school and when entering college. As David Becker puts it into great words, through an article he wrote, “This way, the students would go into classes where they can find out what they want to do with the rest of their lives. However, to have every students be forced to take these classes is absurd.” If you have known the career you want to go into without a doubt, then you should be able to go straight into that.
For a long period of time, students for generations have been forced to take classes which are often known as “general eds.” They mostly consist of classes that are extremely similar to the ones you take in high school, but once again, you are forced to basically re-take these classes in college in order to get any type of degree. These general education classes that you have to repeat in college consist of composition/english, math, science, and history (Becker). Why not finish our general education in high school and pursue our career straight into college? Why are students forced to take these classes all over again before even heading into the direction they would want to go in for the rest of their lives? This will not only save many students time because they will be able to get into what their career objective is right away, but it will also save then all kinds of money.
Now, this system of how America allows all students to earn a bachelors degree, isn’t required around the world. For example, as it explains from the World Higher Education Database, some places in Norway, students from ages six through seventeen are instructed to do lower and upper education requirements and then they are allowed to go straight into a program that offers them a degree within two to three years, only taking classes that are in relation to their career. This happens not just in Norway but in so many other countries as well. Yes, they do pay higher taxes and fees in the year to year payments but it is a lot lower then what America requires you to pay out for college. By doing it this way, you would be able to save more time for yourself and much more money.
The time spent in taking classes that does not apply to your major is pointless. Let us say you know that you want to be a writer or have an english major. Right when you graduate from high school you are so excited to pursue your dreams in becoming what you have envisioned for yourself since you where very young. Then you get into a college that you had hoped for as well. You are so eager to get to know how to write better and educate yourself even more in this specific field. Now English 1A would be so helpful for you because it is in relation to what you are wanting to do and a great refresher (Teoh 111-119). Well, is math at all related to this career? Are you ever going to need math to become a better writer? But it is not like you don’t know math at all. You actually have already taken math and have proven that you have an understanding with this particular subject. If college is all about receiving a degree for the type of career you want, then why take classes that are not relatable to that career at all?
The government does not really help the middle class income families. America’s government system is all about getting the most money possible. From Detroit Free Press as David Jesse expresses, “The federal government made enough money on student loans over the last year that, if it wanted, it could provide maximum-level Pell Grants of $5,645 to 7.3 million college students.” We pay into this because college is so ridiculously expensive. The cut off for students being able to get any type of financial aid is very low. For me personally, my dad is the only income provider for my family and putting mine and his together makes it too much money to get any support from the government. But little do they know that I am the one having to provide most all the money for college because my parents do not have the means to help me completely. I would never be able to live on my own as of now and be able to go to college at all unless I take out large amounts of loans each year. So what about the students that actually pay for their whole college career? Why do we have to put our parents income for financial aid when they aren’t even helping us at all? The government always assumes you are getting some kind of help. If you could determine that you are not, this could help you get more money from the government to pay for college and not be in so much debt when you graduate.
Another argument that many people have, is that a lot of kids graduating high school do not know what they want to do for the rest of their lives (Shoben 5).What if we had a system that made you take a personality test straight out of high school to determine what kind of field you would work well in? This would not only give students actual concrete ideas to go over with themselves but also help them not to have ideas that are just not realistic to begin with. For the students that do not like the test results of the personality test then maybe they could take the general education classes to explore what they like all over again. America tells you from the beginning that you can be whoever you want to be. For the most part this is true, however, the way the college system is set up most people cannot make this a reality. It makes it very difficult that once they have graduated with their degree that students will have their dream job straight out of college. Instead they receive their degree but now have a large amount of debt to pay off because of all the years spent in college. Not to mention that many degree jobs are also very scarce these days. Therefore, resulting in that many students will have basically turned their dreams and dream careers into hobbies due to lack of jobs and major debt.
Many older adults and teachers think students might be way too young to make any kind of decision for themselves at that age. What if high school really prepared you for that one single idea? What if it could be used for that one big stepping stone in your life? As I remember in high school, teachers would rarely bring up the future and the direction we wanted to go into until senior year. Another problem with high school and college is the relationship between the students and the teachers. The relationship is much different. Teachers in high school do not have respect for their students and students do not have respect for their teachers (Forrest 148). From a students perspective of how high school was, some of the classes that were taken one could just ease their way through it and still pass with an A without even learning the criteria. Teachers would do tests together as a class or even barley give out very little home work at all. Where as in college the relationship between students and teachers is much more strict. There is a mutual respect and high expectations for both the teachers and the students of one another. High school needs to work the same way as college does in order to help high schoolers adjust easier to the transition into college. Then, in order to see if the students actually understand what they have learned there should be a final test just before graduating high school. The results of that test would determine if a student needed to retake the classes they scored low in when entering college.
For the kids that already know what they want to do with their lives and score high in the final test with what they have learned in high school, should not they be able to start with their career classes that right away? Being able to get out of college at a faster rate could benefit young adult’s lives in so many ways. Generations are changing left and right (Tucker 14-16). With the more technology increase through the years, and peoples likes and dislikes, the younger generation understands change much better. If we know what we want to do we would be able to get jobs faster which would mean more ideas and better plans, sooner rather then later. You would be able to grab better attention to that specific generation that you grew up in. This would allow you to have better trends and understandings for the older people to use in that field. Even if you entered a field and then eventually decided that it was not for you, you would be able to change and do something else faster than how students change their minds now with how the education is set up in America.
If we eliminate general education and get the use out of it that we need in high school we will not have to be in school for that long. We will go right into what we want to do for the rest of our lives and not have to take classes and pass classes that do not relate at all to the career we are going into. The way the system works for high school would have to be changed. There would need to be better standards of how high school classes are taught. Afterwards, a student would have to provide competency of what they have actually learned in high school to be able to take the next step into career goals. This benefits not only the middle class but the government as a whole. People will become who they want to be at a younger age which means more ideas. less student debt, more jobs and different standards for America as a whole.
Becker, David. “The Time Has Come to Get Rid of General Education Requirements.”Copyright 2017 Logos Light. http://www.niacc.edu/logoslite/2015/11/10/the-time-has-come-to-get- rid-of-general-education-requirements/
Forrest, Scott N. “Achieving Student-Centered Success on the High School Exit Exam: Five Components of an Effective Remediation Program.” CATESOL Journal, vol. 21, no. 1, 01 Jan. 2010, pp. 148-161. EBSCOhost, chaffey.idm.oclc.org/login?url=http:// search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=eric&AN=EJ1112260&site=ehost-live.
IAU from Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education (NOKUT), Oslo, 2006. “Norway Structure of Educational System.”Copyright © IAU, World Higher Education Database (WHED) http://www.euroeducation.net/prof/norco.htm
Jesse, David. “Figures come as concerns mount about growing loan debt for students, graduates.” Detroit Free Press. 25 Nov. 2013. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/ nation/2013/11/25/federal-student-loan-profit/3696009/
Shoben, Edward Joseph, Jr. and Washington, DC. American Personnel and Guidance Association. Needed: Fully Functioning Counseling Centers or Viable Communities?. 01 Apr. 1969. EBSCOhost, chaffey.idm.oclc.org/login? url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx? direct=true&db=eric&AN=ED033408&site=ehost-live.
Teoh, George Boon Sai, et al. “Which Aspects of the English Language Do Distance Learners Find Difficult?.” Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education, vol. 17, no. 3, 01 July 2016, pp. 111-119. EBSCOhost, chaffey.idm.oclc.org/login? url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx? direct=true&db=eric&AN=EJ1106362&site=ehost-live.
Tucker, Al. “What Are Those Checkerboard Things? How Quick Response Codes Can Enrich Student Projects.” Tech Directions, vol. 71, no. 4, 01 Nov. 2011, pp. 14-16. EBSCOhost, chaffey.idm.oclc.org/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx? direct=true&db=eric&AN=EJ956770&site=ehost-live.