I used to not see education as much more than a tool for learning. Thinking more generally, I have come to the conclusion that education offers many more benefits than just learning. I have also found learning done in the form of education only forms a small subset of that there is to learn.
First off there is the prevalence of school. Why does it exist? School can be thought of as a large form of baby sitting. If teaching didn’t exist there would still be a need for collective childcare simply to reduce the burden on working parents. Secondly if adolescentsÂ are to be looked after so they don’t harm themselves, they may as well learn something. In fact, education can form as a protection against poor care. If the students aren’t learning they are more likely to injure themselves or break other rules their own parents would not allow.
Education is a great way to network. Think of the people you have met in your life. Chances are it was in some form of educational environment. Although possibly not the best way to arrange people, it seems hard to find a simpler way to allow people to network than to make them all learn something similar.
Education usually involves tests. These can be an indicator of good will. If people were given unlimited time to make there way though life and education was not valued, there would be more time for people to cheat systems and ultimately corrupt interpersonal endeavors. Â Education chews up a lot of peoples time giving them less time toÂ come up with deceivingÂ communication.
Education also seems to be somewhat essential in communication. Communication is very often arbitrary and two words can be very much as good as each other. Education seems to help normalize language so that it doesn’t fracture into the mess that can be seen in less educated disciplines.
Education is not without its downsides. Firstly it takes an awful lot of time. Much of it is learning words for concepts you could of explained yourself using simpler language. Also, I have found there is a lot of things that is not so good at teaching.
Just think of how much maths you did in school. Many people hate it and try to avoid using it.Try for instance actually counting the change you receive at cash registers. I once tried it out of curiosity and I was shocked to find how often people charged incorrectly for orders. Even more embarrassing is when you tell them of their mistake and they proceed to make another one. I know they are not all being dodgy because many people undercharge which can only reasonably be explained by a mistake.
Moving back onto the subject of maths in general. The reason I believe there is so much of it in education is because it formalizes so well. Great mathematicians have built grand theories accurate to every properly madeÂ objection. This has meant that the core of maths had to be rigorous and also tight in it’s abstractions. Learning maths forms a basic IQ test but it is not without the criticism that it only measures peoples abilities to follow instructions and less things like creative abilities or empathy.
The real world is cluttered with things that are difficult to formalize. Sometimes this is because they are too new. Sometimes it is because they change too often. Other times they rely on abstractions that just haven’t seeped well into societies subconscious. Whatever the reason they are there. Where is the manual for example onÂ playing the stock market?
The stock market has a strange tendency that if an idea becomes widespread enough, people try to game it by using financial instruments. Something similar can be can said about socializing.
If you give too many gifts to someone they may be liable to think you are trying too hard to win favor and become labelled creepy.
Sometimes knowledge falls under the dominion of philosophy and if a culture excepts the idea too well it can become victim to other cultures. Sometimes ideas are politically incorrect or just too difficult to measure. Remember for example that psychologists are not allowed to conduct fully isolated studies on humans as this would be inhumane if not just really expensive and time consuming.
My point I’m trying to make is that unlike what some say there is knowledge outside of google. I also think given the number of things there are to learn there are things that know one else knows. Another point is that if something can be learned from educational material, it’s probably not very sought after as there are already many practicing what is taught. To be paraphrased, Oscar Wilde once said:
Education is an admirable thing. But it is well to remember from time to time thatÂ nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.