As those of you who follow my personal account on FB know I am having to take, as it is requirement for the Nuc Med technician training program I want to get into, a beginning speech class.
This for a girl with a BA, an MLIS, who has been public speaking since 3d grade. Who has taught, and led workshops. But God forbid my EXPERIENCE counts. Because they need a class and grade to prove I know how to communicate. ARG!!!!
THEN, I get to the class. My friends, I have no problem with teaching public speaking because truly, it is a skill I was born doing, but so many people have a hard time with it, and I respect the fact it is an essential skill that should be taught. This class includes how to research at a college level, another thing I FULLY think everyone should know how to do and it should be taught to them (though at the high school level). I wonder if the prof would let the former librarian teach that part?
What I object too, seriously and strenuously, and what has me tearing out my hair and really wanting to drink a beer, is how dumbed DOWN all this is. Examples:
- The syllabus includes course outlines and a listing of the learning objectives that will be taught in this class. We are also told, in great detail, what plagiarism is and not to cheat.
- We have a grade tracker sheet, to put down our points, and the points we can recieve, and an explanation of how to calculate our grade.
- We have an outline of how to write a two page paper. The suggestion is to split a piece of paper in half and write ideas on both sides that are pros and cons or some such thing. I couldn't read any farther, my brain exploded.
- We are told that we have to write our name on the board before giving a speech, and to throw away gum first.
- We have to critique speeches. We have to make eye contact with at least three people in class. Because you know, if you don't give a specific number we might forget or something. Granted, this IS important, and it also includes things like posture and voice reaching to the back of the room, also important.
- We have to outline our speeches.
- We are REQUIRED to have visual aids.
And the teacher, to her credit, has all this laid out and a lot of supplemental information, organized well, online.
But am I the only one who sees this and thinks, this is a high school class? My mom teaches high school. This is EXACTLY what she does with her students.
Now, it is bad enough that I have to take this class, but I can suck it up because I have to do it I have no choice. It's just another stupid hurdle. What is driving me crazy, what I just can't quite get my head wrapped around, is the fact that these community colleges have been dumbed down to the point that they are like high school. I can handle going back to my early college days. I resent bitterly having to go back to high school. And it was NOT like this when I was at the community college. I had real classes, with college expectations both in content and delivery, and it was not dumbed down.
Asking my teacher mother why this is so, and she says flat out because the kids aren't learning it in high school. Not because they can't, not because they aren't being taught by many dedicated teachers, but because they are simply lazy and won't do the work. Period. You can give excuses all you want, but it comes down to the majority of kids flat out refusing to learn. And that just explains sooooo much.
Makes one truly frightened about the state of our future, doesn't it?
Your frankly totally pissed off and aggravated EA, who will do her darndest to refrain from complaining anymore, now that I have written this post.