Editorial Exchange: Self-Driven Education the Future

Article excerpt

Editorial Exchange: Self-driven education the future

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An editorial from the Amherst Daily News, published June 20:

An Edmonton teacher was suspended for giving students a mark of zero on assignments they failed to hand in. In Quebec, tens of thousands take to the streets to keep tuition down. In job interviews across the country, university education is a baseline expectation for any professional position.

What these have in common is the devaluation of university credentials - propelled, in part, by inflation of marks in secondary schools - and the egalitarian expectation that university should be available to all.

Universities remain an important part of a knowledge-based economy and a society that aspires to being fair and free. But educators, employers and parents need to turn the tide on the idea that any student capable of tying his shoes must go to university.

From certificate programs to apprenticeships, volunteering to online and self-learning, a vast array of education options is opening up.

And many, if not most, of the professional disciplines taught at universities, from medicine to dentistry, computer programming to nutrition, are either recent additions that can lay no claim to being the traditional purview of universities, or sequestered in colleges that could exist independent of the broader university community. …