I just finished reading two editorials in the Woodmen Edition, a sort of "small town" newspaper for our area of Colorado Springs. It usually has some good editorials so I always check them out. This week the two were:
The Suzanne Fields article discussed an event (party) at Colubmia University where all the participants must be naked. It goes on to discuss sexualism on other campuses, and basically the sorry state of affairs on many campuses.
Froma Harrop's article discusses a prediction by Peter Drucker, where he said that the modern university will disappear in a few decades; being replaced with the internet, online classes, recordings of lectures, etc.
To a certain extent - a "home school" college eduation - to use an analogy. We home schooled both our kids (or for the majority of the time they home schooled themselves). While it has many positive aspects, the major complaint I had against it, was not the quality of the education (it seems sufficient - or maybe even better than public school) or the lack of socialization (Jaime led a very active social life without it); but my major complaint was the classroom interaction. One of the things I enjoyed about college (depending on the size of the classes) was the interaction. Thinking about things and discussing them. I was 25, married and had 1 child - with a second born my senior year - so I was far less interested in social things (other than of course UofM football :)); than probably the majority of students. But I really enjoyed the class room. And when I got my master's I felt the same way. The "campus" was at MCI and consisted of the same group of students working on their mastors (starting with 12 I think and down to about 6 by the end of the class). While much smaller than most campus classes, this still allowed us to exchange ideas.
I know with things like wikis, irc, etc. - it is possible. But I still feel there is no substitute for actually sitting together and discussing, or working a problem, etc. I realize the benefits of on-line classes (you can work them when you want, you can have a full time job and still go to school, etc.) - and I haven't really participated in any - so don't know what kind of "interaction" they offer. And maybe I'm just old-fashioned. But I'd hate to see them disappear. And I don't see how they can, as not everything is "book learning" as they say.
Interesting though that one article is on how universities won't be around in the future, and another one is complaining about things that have nothing to do with learning at another. Maybe if schools got back to teaching, and aways from enlightening (at least in some areas); they'd be better off...
A lot going on lately - I think I'm in a reflective stage. :)