31 January 2011

Why Even Bother With College?

The Best Article Every Day posted a list of the ten most worthless college majors.  (HT: The Cap'n.)  Among them:  art history, philosophy, American studies, English Lit, and religion.

Seriously, who goes to college for these majors?  If you want to know art history, philosophy, or English lit, all you need is a library card and the internet.  You don’t need a $50,000 student loan or structured classes.  You just need self-discipline.

For American studies, all you have to do is observe people at malls and watch television.  Frankly, though, if you’ve lived in this country for ten years or more and can’t figure out America, college is probably a hopeless proposition for you anyway.

As for religious studies, I recommend staying away from formal education.  Simply study whatever religion you’re interested in from its sacred texts and make up your own mind.  And if you simply must have some sort of instructor, get yourself a set of commentaries and read them for yourself.  It’s the same level of quality at a fraction of the price.  Furthermore, you don’t have to listen to self-important blowhards wax eloquent about arcane theories that are most likely wrong.

Frankly, unless you plan to major in a hard science, engineering, or medicine, I would recommend that you avoid college altogether.  If you’re truly interested in learning about something, simply get a library card and get in touch with experts who are willing to give you some of their time for free.

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