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Category: Curiosity & Education (page 1 of 2)

If you think you know everything, you can’t learn anything

From PBS:

When students come into Dan Levitin’s lab, he spends most of his time trying to teach them that they don’t know everything they think they do. “Knowledge can only be created in an environment where we’re open to the possibility that we’re wrong,” he says. Levitin shares his humble opinion on the best way to help students.

Skim reading discourages critical analysis, making us more likely to accept false information

We are not taking time to think about and examine what we are reading. We are hardly taking the time to read past the headlines. It’s having a dramatic effect on us.

We need to cultivate the capacity for deeper forms of thought and critical analysis. To do otherwise is to become susceptible to other people’s views and wishes. This is how we become less self-reliant and less able to discern what is true and what is not.

Without critical thought, whomever screams the loudest will therefore get our attention. Sleazy salespeople and fraudsters will successfully sell us snake oil and empty promises.

We do not err as a society when we innovate, but when we ignore what we disrupt or diminish while innovating. In this hinge moment between print and digital cultures, society needs to confront what is diminishing in the expert reading circuit, what our children and older students are not developing, and what we can do about it.

We know from research that the reading circuit is not given to human beings through a genetic blueprint like vision or language; it needs an environment to develop. Further, it will adapt to that environment’s requirements – from different writing systems to the characteristics of whatever medium is used. If the dominant medium advantages processes that are fast, multi-task oriented and well-suited for large volumes of information, like the current digital medium, so will the reading circuit. As UCLA psychologist Patricia Greenfield writes, the result is that less attention and time will be allocated to slower, time-demanding deep reading processes, like inference, critical analysis and empathy, all of which are indispensable to learning at any age.

Read more, please, at The Guardian

NYU makes tuition free for all medical students

CNN:

New York University will offer a scholarship that covers tuition to every new, current and future medical student, it said Thursday.

All students enrolled in the MD degree program are eligible, regardless of their financial need or academic performance. The scholarship covers the full cost of tuition, which this year amounts to $55,018.

The NYU School of Medicine is the first top 10-ranked medical school to make tuition free, the school said. There are currently 442 students enrolled, including the 102 new students entering this fall semester. They learned they would be receiving the scholarship at Thursday’s white coat ceremony, which marks the beginning of their careers in medicine.

Meanwhile: Georgia Tech Creates Cybersecurity Master’s Degree Online for Less Than $10,000

Best countries in the world in 2018

U.S. News & World Report has released their annual “Best Countries” index.

They evaluated 80 countries and surveyed 21,000 people from four regions (the Americas, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East and Africa). Countries were graded 65 different ways, from how well they rank in “citizenship,” “cultural influence,” “education,” “heritage,” “power,” to “quality of life,” to name a few.

Interestingly, both the UK and the USA are down one position in this year’s rankings.

  1. Switzerland
  2. Canada
  3. Germany (up 1 from 2017)
  4. United Kingdom (down 1 from 2017)
  5. Japan
  6. Sweden
  7. Australia (up 1 from 2017)
  8. United States (down 1 from 2017)
  9. France
  10. Netherlands (up 1 from 2017)

More at US News & World Report

France is banning smartphones in schools for students

Agence France Press:

French schoolchildren will have to leave their smartphones switched off or at home as the new academic year begins in September, after lawmakers voted for a ban on Monday.

The ban on smartphones, tablets and other connected devices, which will apply to pupils up to the age of 14-15, fulfils a campaign promise by centrist President Emmanuel Macron, while being derided as “cosmetic” by the opposition.

Barack Obama shares his summer reading list

This week, Barack Obama is travelling to Africa for the first time since he left office.

In South Africa, the Obama Foundation will convene 200 extraordinary young leaders from across the continent and I’ll deliver a speech to mark the 100th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s birth.

In preparation for the trip, Mr. Obama wanted to share a list of books that I’d recommend for summer reading, including some from a number of Africa’s best writers and thinkers.

Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
A true classic of world literature, this novel paints a picture of traditional society wrestling with the arrival of foreign influence, from Christian missionaries to British colonialism. A masterpiece that has inspired generations of writers in Nigeria, across Africa, and around the world.

Continue reading

Ontario is returning to a 1998 sex-ed curriculum. Some teachers are fighting back

Global News:

The new Education Minister, Lisa Thompson, announced Wednesday that schools in the fall would go back to teaching the 1998 curriculum, which predates same-sex marriage in Canada by seven years, and doesn’t include topics like cyber-bullying, social media or LGTBQ issues.

Watch: Why incompetent people think they’re amazing

Why incompetent people think they’re amazing – David Dunning

Stop trying to find your passion

“Find your passion” is bad advice, say Yale and Stanford psychologists.

Instead, stay curious. Stay flexible. Look for opportunities for personal growth.

O’Keefe warns that the directive to “find your passion” suggests a passive process. Telling people to develop their passion, however, suggests an active one that depends on us—and allows that it can be challenging to pursue. This, the psychologist says, “is a realistic way of thinking.”

Instead of looking for a magic bullet, that one thing you must be meant to do even though you don’t know what it is yet, it can be more productive to perceive interests flexibly, as potentially endless. A growth mindset, rather than a fixed sense that there’s one interest you should pursue single-mindedly, improves the chances of finding your passion—and having the will to master it. This approach will also inform your work by providing additional perspectives gleaned through multiple interests, O’Keefe tells Quartz.

Tips to stay curious from people who do it for a living

Catherine Pearson, The Huffington Post:

A person’s so-called “curiosity quotient” or “CQ” is all about whether he or she has a hungry mind, explains Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic on the Harvard Business Review’s blog. “People with higher CQ are more inquisitive and open to new experiences. They find novelty exciting and are quickly bored with routine. They tend to generate many original ideas and are counter-conformist.

More:

Curiosity Is as Important as Intelligence, Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, Harvard Business Review

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