Whats Wrong w/ Higher Ed in the US? Lots!

Newmark’s Door has a great blog entry offering a compilation of criticisms of higher education in the U.S. Those quoted included professors, entrepreneurs, and . Those targetted include law schools, humanities, and computer science departments. There is something for everyone in this piece. Here are a few snippets and who they are attributed to.

Joel Spolsky (Entrepreneur):

Many universities have managed to convince themselves that the more irrelevant the curriculum is to the real world, the more elite they are. It’s the liberal arts way. Leave it to the technical vocational institutes, the red-brick universities, and the lesser schools endowed with many compass points (“University of Northern Southwest Florida”) to actually produce programmers. The Ivy Leagues of the world want to teach linear algebra and theories of computation and Haskell programming, and all the striver CS departments trying to raise their standards are doing so by eliminating anything practical from the curriculum in favor of more theory. Continue reading “Whats Wrong w/ Higher Ed in the US? Lots!”

Watching Announcement of Sec Ed Arne Duncan…

I just watched the press conference where Obama introduced his Secretary of Ed nomination, Arne Duncan. A colleague/friend of his from Chicago. Obama and Biden gave basic comments; nothing earth shattering.

Arne Duncan, in his comments, made no mention of higher education. I am going to check the transcripts, but it seemed like all he did was talk about himself and his great works in Chicago. (Not a good way to start in my opinion). His focus is clearly on primary education. He might be an innovator (a reporter’s question to PE Obama referenced Duncan’s plans to pay kids for grades), but he might not get the breadth of his job quite yet.

We’ll see what this means, if anything, but Arne Duncan’s first 5 minutes did not not do much for me.