Best Sentence CVIII

The one hundred and eighth award for Best Sentence I’ve Heard Or Read Lately (BSIHORL) goes to commenter “edwoof”, who says underneath “The Dangerous Lure of the Research-University Model” by Kevin Carey, via Professor Mondo:

We have gone from the university-as-knowledge-provider model to the university as a seller of an educational experience and we are fast approaching a place where the university becomes a purveyor of an educational fantasy.

It’s always a treacherous business to try to find an explanation for things you can’t see changing first-hand, even if you’re spending years & decades feeling the shock waves of them. But the question compels, and so flailing around looking for an explanation, I’m having a flashback to November of last year, when Blogsister Cassy managed to lay her mitts on this:

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This nourishes a theory germinating in my head, a theory as sturdy and functional as any other. I’m a “follow the money” kinda guy; the money that comes to continuing/higher education, as I understand it, is tuition that is provided mostly by parents. If a transformation is taking place with chubby sixth graders, it’s silly to think the same transformation would not be taking place with freshmen and sophomores…and this would ultimately have the effect described, right? “So how are things going in college, sport? Are you having a good time there?” I can’t prove it since what takes place over a Thanksgiving table while “sport” is home on break, is none of my business.

But my intuition tells me there is a diminishing supply of the classic home-for-the-holidays conversation…”now that you’re a big college man, you think you can solve this page of problems they gave me back in the day, sport?” The pattern fits right in with what I see in other places. More concern about experiences, emotions that result from the experiences, how does it make you feel. Less emphasis on individual capability, conceptual understanding, good old-fashioned know-how.

Cross-posted at House of Eratosthenes.

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