The LSU Top 5 #8

This is the eighth of our weekly links to the top 5 interesting bits and pieces we’ve found from around the internet.

(Linking doesn’t mean we necessarily agree with these articles!)

A Point of View: When students answer back – BBC

Mary Beard laments the importance placed on customer satisfaction within universities, wondering if it inhibits hard, ‘destabilising’ study. She says:

…the truth is, when you meet a group of ex-students years after they’ve left, you can pretty well guarantee that one of their commonest refrains will be, “Do you know what, I think in an odd way I learned most from that course I used to hate.”

Audio link

Transcribed text link

Tough exams and learning by rote are the keys to success, says Michael Gove – The Guardian

The British Education Secretary Michael Gove wants to see a renewed emphasis put on rote learning at schools, on the basis that tough exams which require the reproduction of large amounts of memorised information are the best way to motivate students.

Link

‘You’re hired’… no, wait… ‘You’ve got a scholarship’? – Times Higher Education

A scholarship hunt via TV show? Academically challenging and entertaining? Scotland’s Robert Gordon, in conjunction with the British Council, put 12 hopeful students from Ghana through a series of business challenges a la The Apprentice. The second season finishes in mid-December.

Link

‘What if we made fewer PhDs?’The Chronicle of Higher Education

Are there too many PhDs expecting full employment upon graduation who are then disappointed when the job offers don’t roll in? What would the ideal ratio of PhD graduates to non-academic positions be? This article discusses the importance of the expectations of graduate students and gives advice as to how to manage these as well as the reality of traditional PhD admissions and how it could be improved.

Link

What makes us intelligent? – BBC

It’s been regularly asked whether the internet is rewiring our brains. However, our intelligence and thinking is shaped by a much wider environment that this. We have always taken whatever shortcuts our environment offers, and therefore Googling facts rather than memorising them isn’t a fundamentally new thing.

Link

We love hearing your thoughts on these articles, so feel free to comment below!

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