Summary-Response Essay on the Article "A Good Education"

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In the article “A Good Education”, the author poses the question of whether a good education is a broad one, with traditional subjects, or a specialized one, providing practical skills. The author states that in the XVIIIth and XIXth century a good education was a broad one, which provided men the possibility to pursue any career. However, he/she contends that since the latter part of the XIXth century, workers were required to have a more specialized training because the world was more complex, specialized, and competitive. The author explains that, around the 1960s, American students’ complaint about taking useless courses and not choosing their subjects lead to a reform in Universities’ programs, which now included many specialized subjects and dropped several traditional ones. According to the author, now both graduates and employers complain that practical knowledge lacks depth and flexibility, and is not enough to perform successfully at work. To conclude, he/she states that every teacher and student has their own ideal program and that it is hard to decide who has to right to define what a good education should be like. In my opinion, the fact that the author has presented the changes in the educational system within a historical frame is very important, because I believe that the historical and social context is closely related to the definition of a good education. As the renowned author, Sir Ken Robinson, states in his talk “Changing Education Paradigms”, nowadays the reasons why many countries are reforming public education are mainly economic and cultural. On the one hand, the economies in the 21th century are constantly changing and children should be educated to take their own place in their country’s economy. On the other hand, due to globalization, children need to find a balance between adapting to this process and having their own cultural identity. This context is completed by the fact that, according to Robinson, children are growing up in the...
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