Saturday, August 21, 2010

More Reasons to Homeschool College

Anybody who reads homeschooling forums and blogs is well familiar with school horror stories from the grade schools, which often involve mobbing, violence, bad teachers, and/or poor academic standards. Many people believe that colleges and universities are a step above this. However, I recently found two blogs which help to prove the contrary.

Rate Your Students and College Misery are websites which are well worth visiting for anybody considering a brick-and-mortar college. Both blogs are written by college professors, and most of the comment writers are also professors. Rate Your Students gives the horror story of the day, in which a college writing class is devoted to teaching the students how to write on lined notebook paper, complete with six rules for doing so, ie, don't write to the left of the pink vertical line.

Another post at Rate Your Students is written by a professor who swears in class, partly to make her students aware that they've entered the adult world. This is a good example of the modern tendency to confuse negativity with maturity, as there are many adults, even college students, who don't swear and find it offensive. Movies which contain pornography and violence are often referred to as "adult" entertainment. This attitude ignores the act that it's only been very recently that foul language has become socially acceptable, and that even today, there are many places in the adult world where swearing isn't allowed. For instance, many TV and radio stations don't allow their anchormen to use foul language.

College Misery reveals the hostility which often exists between the professors and the students. At least one post refers to the female students to as "snowflakes," and the professors' overall view of the students seems to be that they're mostly drunk and lazy. Reading the posts, and the following comments, gives one the impression of an environment in which the professors are frustrated and burned out, and who are dealing with students who don't really want to be at college nor learn anything there. As neither of these blogs is limited to professors of only one college, it shows that the problems with today's colleges are widespread throughout many schools.

This situation might also make one wonder if the traditional college experience is really necessary. As I was reading the horror stories, I kept thinking about the expense of college, and whether the hostile environment there really offers enough benefits to be worth the trouble. At one point, I considered becoming a college history professor. These blogs make me glad that I didn't.

There's another benefit to doing college homeschool-style. There was one night last winter, when the temperature was below freezing, the sidewalks were covered with snow, it was ten 'o' clock at night, and I was studying economics. It was an enormous relief that I only had to turn off the laptop and pull out my sofa bed, instead of traipsing out into the freezing cold to get home.

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