Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Mid-point Reflections on Academically Adrift

Haley Scholars Fall 2012 Reading Groups    

We've covered just about half way through Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa's Academically Adrift about the "limited" learning possibilities for modern-day college students. Under-prepared students, the lack of adequate guidance, the absence of rigorous course requirements, and the search for "easy" courses have contributed to a devaluing of collegiate education. As a result, from an academic standpoint, many students are, as the book title notes, adrift or moving without a sense of purpose.       

We've covered several issues in the book so far. At this point, what's one topic addressed by Arum and Roksa that you have found particularly noteworthy? Why?


Shakita H. said...

The topic of students being under-prepared I have found to be very important because mnay students are not academically and mentally prepared to make the transition from high school to college and the students attend a college or university lost and are susceptible to getting on academic probation. There are obstacles in which people encounter such as financially being able to afford college, economical problems,the environment in which one lives in, and more. But I think that students need to become more informed and academically challenged in order to start the the road of achieving great success.

Shawn C said...

I too found the most interesting portion of "Academically Adrift" dealt with the preparedness of students venturing onto a new academic endeavor under prepared. The division in social classes does seem to play a big role in the success of an individual in higher academia. However, we must remember that the type of conventional education that is impressed upon us from an early age may not fit some, and I feel that alternative routes should also be introduced to young individuals so they do not feel as if they are imprisoned by the shackles to the strictly didactic realms of higher education. In closing, it seems to me that the fields of reading, writing, and arrhythmic need to be upgraded in instances of the inferior portion of the social class. However, there needs to be a new category added to the timeless "three R" basics, and that is the category of alternative higher education.

Tia Borders Baptist said...

I found the topic about students no being prepared for college and how the high school aren't helping. Since where i come from that is a similar issue that we had in my high school. If it wasn't for the Upward Bound program that we had i probably wouldn't be in college or would be struggle to understand how to figure out to go. That program helped to prepare me and helped my parents. If more high school had these types of programs i am sure more students would be prepare. I feel a program like this should be mandatory for graduation to help students be better prepare no mater what.Even though some students may not like it in the beginning it will help them in the end.

Jewel M. said...

I found the absence of rigorous course work has been a topic that I have most identified with. I realized the importance of having rigorous course work in high school and how it correlates to being prepared to handle the course work in a higher learning environment. In high school I did both regular and advance placement classes. I noticed the difference of teaching style between the two. Now that I am in a higher learning environment, I notice the difference between m abilities and those who were not as fortunate. I feel high schools should implement academic tracks for those who are aspiring to attend college. On these tracks I feel the course work should be at a higher standard for preparedness.

Jessica Johnson said...

I have found the topic of students being underprepared very noteworthy because there are many students who are not academically and socially prepared for college. Like Shakita stated, “Students come from different environments which affect their education”. Instructors need to be able to connect all of their students to one level of knowledge and teach from there. Yes, this may mean going over high school material in college but it is learning. I pose a question- What is being educated to you? To me it is being able to build on previous knowledge with new material and being able to create new ideas from there. Unfortunately, if students don’t have a common prior knowledge we will see students drift away in the classroom, those that become our socially challenged, and those that drop out of the institution. I am a firm believer that we need instructors that can make those connections so that students aren’t just going to class and doing the work; they have to be able to connect and retain the knowledge in order to succeed.

Jessica Johnson