Having reviewed the mid-term essays written by my English 102 sections, I’ve discovered more curious assumptions to add to the previous post. These do modulate from the luck vs. intelligence question. However, they reveal quite a bit about why some students just can’t learn at the college level, in a community college or elsewhere.
(continuing from previous post)
6.) You’re lucky if you make a decision to improve your life. If you choose not to improve your life, it’s because you’re unlucky.
7.) People learn things when you teach them.
8) It is impossible to look at the world from any point of view other than your own.
9) Environments generally adapt to an individual’s needs.
10 [to expand] An individual has no need to adapt to an enviroment and, therefore, should not worry about changing bad habits. People will accept you.
11 No one believes that learning is fun.
12) I am an acceptable representation of most people.
13) I can ignore evidence when it does not fit my beliefs.
14) You should only be taught things you already know (because that makes you more comfortable and improves your grade).
15) It’s always ineffective to teach someone something in a way that makes them uncomfortable and confused.
16) I should not have to search for information on my own. It should be presetned to me so that I could use it to solve a problem.
17) Most employers give you a clear list of instructions and explanations, and there’s always someone at work who knows that the answer is.
The most baffling one for me is #8. There’s evidence everywhere that this is simply absurd, and I’ve been consistently providing the students with data that contradicts that point wildly. Number 9 is a very common belief among students who make no habit of reading. I’d explain #14 by drawing our attention to virtually any politician; however, these students pay virtually no attention to the political process. Those political behaviors, if it isn’t obvious, just reflect our culture.