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Thursday, Aug. 25, 2016

No class in some courses

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

How would you like to go back to college and take a course called "Physics of Star Trek?" Well, if you were enrolled in a local university you could.

I found this out just the other day when I came across of list of classes my wife is to choose from. She is going back to school to get her four-year degree and she apparently has to take three ridiculous university studies courses. I say ridiculous because they are just a way for the university to get more money.

My wife was told the point of the university studies courses was to "broaden her education." Apparently one of those ways to broaden her education is by taking a class called "Physics of Star Trek."

According to the course description, students can learn "how the universe as we know it compares with the universe of Star Trek and other popular science fiction." Do they know that Star Trek isn't real? Do they know they are comparing what little they know about our universe to a fictional television show?

How would that broaden anyone's education? Are you going to turn a geek into a bigger geek? What's the final, write a comparative essay discussing the flight style of the Starship Enterprise to the Space Shuttle Atlantis?

That isn't the only ridiculous class. How about taking "Human Sexuality?" This class is the "study of human sexuality, emphasizing biological, psychological and sociological aspects. Sexuality issues dealing with critical thinking and valuing will be emphasized." Isn't a student's four to six years in college nothing but a class on human sexuality?

Another class offered is "Perspectives on the Present." So you basically sit in class and talk about what is going on with the news? We do that every day here in the newsroom. Maybe I should send some money to the university and get some credit while we do it.

Want to explore the nature of the mind, consciousness and personal identity through readings in philosophy, literature and the behavioral sciences? No problem, just take the course "Mind, Meaning and Value."

Have you ever wondered why people get mad? If so, you could take "The American Temper: Ideas in Conflict." As a matter of fact, I'm surprised that I haven't been approached to teach the class as I have been known to lose my temper from time to time.

Want to investigate the aesthetic difference between the movement disciplines of dance and sport? If so, you could take "Aesthetics of Movement: Athletic Dancers & Artistic Athletes." I'm sure you can learn the difference between ball room dancing, pole dancing and end zone dancing in this groundbreaking class.

While I didn't find an "Underwater Basketweaving" course, some of these courses seem just as pointless. And yet they are supposed to broaden my wife's education. I tell you what course they need: "How We Waste Your Money 101."

I don't agree but understand why as an underclassmen you have to take things like biology or algebra or other classes that are not going to be a part of your major. Maybe you'll realize that you like something else and have a broader education base. But by the time you are a junior or senior there is no need to be taking these ridiculous classes. You should be focusing on your major, not having your time wasted learning about something you don't care about.

In a time when education funding is getting cut across the country why not eliminate some of these silly classes and lessen the requirements to graduate from college? No, not lessen the requirements within one's major, but at least some of the additional requirements. I'm sorry, but I don't think learning about Star Trek will help anyone get a job when they graduate. Well, unless they can figure out how to beam somebody from place to place. If they do that, I'm going back to school and that is the first class I will sign up for.

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David Jenkins
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