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Oh, we know the culture war

November 25, 2011

Earlier this week I did a quiz on the back of a cereal box and scored 100%.  Something is wrong with me though, I’m more proud of my B average in University, go figure, eh?  A score of 100% is obviously better than 74%, hands down.  It’s obvious I should take more pride on my kids cereal box quiz score.

What would you rather have, the highest score in a first year Geology course or have a score that ranks you in the top 20% of an MCAT (Medical College Admission Test)?   The answer is obvious, right? Who wants to be ranked, say, 1076th when you can be numero uno!  Even if there are over 80 000 MCAT’s conducted and only 50 people in your class being first is what matters most.  Let’s make sure we do not encourage our kids to pursue difficult coursework, frankly, it’s too hard.  There’s a much better chance at reaching the top in a field that is less competitive and demanding.

Say you knew a student who went to Eastern South-West Arkansas Bradford campus and graduated with a 4.0 GPA.  Would you be disappointed with another student who graduated from Harvard with a 3.8 GPA?  You should, it’s a lower score!  Throw prestige out the window altogether, we shouldn’t care what institution the grades come from. Expectations.

Why do we encourage kids to go into competitive fields of study when we can have them shy away from the best and excel in easier courses?  Isn’t the goal simply to have the best ranking and highest score independent of their field?  Leave all the hard subjects for other countries to focus on while we put our energy into being the best at easier endeavours.  Nuclear physics, brain surgery, forget about that stuff.

Let’s take this a step further and award scholarships on grades alone.  Don’t worry about what institution they’re attending or what program they’re in, highest grades get the scholarships!  We’ll end up funding easier coursework but let’s face it, it’s better to have 100% in Basket Weaving than 90% in Computer Engineering. Am I wrong here people?

This logic might seem insane but this is actually the way many Canadians (including media and organizations) evaluate sporting achievements.

  1. November 25, 2011 1:17 pm

    great post..

  2. November 25, 2011 4:18 pm


  3. Mark permalink
    November 25, 2011 10:33 pm

    ESW Arkansas-Brandford Alumni here!! Go Bobcats!

  4. November 27, 2011 9:07 am

    Whoa, whoa, wait… so you’re telling me that winning my hometown half (1st place out of 30 runners) isn’t as prestigious as you placing 3rd at STWM?!?! I’m crushed, and you should be ashamed for making me feel that way!

    • reidcoolsaet permalink*
      November 27, 2011 6:00 pm

      I wasn’t actually talking about comparing running results vs running results 😉

  5. Fred Urie permalink
    November 29, 2011 2:18 pm

    So how many miles you jog every day for your marathon? You could get bad knees from
    jogging that much. Don’t you get cold jogging in shorts?

  6. Chris permalink
    December 2, 2011 2:52 pm

    You know what’s sad, is the fact universities cater to this kind of shit. Take Western for example, they had a couple different first year options for everything in science. There was always the hard version, than the other for students aspiring to go into medicine. It still drives me nuts they created this dichotomy. There should only be one of each, either you cut the mustard or you don’t.

    It’s also why I felt when Bond-Mills was the head coach it was the best season of T&F there. She knew the difference between winning a 600m in 1:25, and finishing third in 1:21.??.

  7. Dan permalink
    December 14, 2011 2:15 pm

    Subtle but well played. What’s with the Volkswagen ad at the end?! Are they sponsoring you now? Maybe the German standards aren’t so tough; run for Germany!


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