Better Learning at Lower Cost

If you receive Newt Gingrich’s e-mails, you’ve no doubt read about this. In case you don’t, or haven’t, Gingrich involves himself with finding solutions; mainly centering on education, working with technology to make life better.
Although this was formed by the founder of Google, it still sounds like a very good idea for those seeking a techy degree at low cost to you. (There are other degrees, as well, but it doesn’t specify.)
Here goes.

At first Udacity tried to build partnerships with existing universities to offer a better product at lower cost. And it did have some success. Working with Georgia Tech, Udacity offers a $10,000 master’s degree in computer science from one of the best programs in the country. But for the most part, the old institutions of higher learning met the new technology with resistance and in some cases outright hostility.
So now the company has decided to work completely outside the traditional university system. Sebastian and his COO, Vish, told us about a new offering they call Nanodegrees. These are programs of study in very specific and practical subject areas–how to build iPhone apps, for instance–that certify the graduate has skills an employer might need. For $200 a month–a tiny fraction of an expensive college degree that may yet leave graduates unemployed–nanodegrees come with support from real mentors who can help students work through problems and steer them through the program to the end.

Better Learning at Lower Cost

Pretty interesting stuff, I thought.

For those interested, there’s a link to the self-driving car, as well.

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I think the private sector can do a much better job at educating. It may eventually come to that, as public sector pensions are bankrupting states.

I remember a college accounting course I took was taught by a man who only taught part time and worked in private industry full time. He wasn’t what you call a professor, but I sure learned a lot from him. Especially in the actual practical application of accounting.

My kids went to private school. Not all their teachers were degreed. They did have to pass certain requirements, but only had to be totally knowledgeable in the subject that they taught. The school cost less than half of what the public schools got per student. Seeing how today’s children take to, and have their noses stuck in computer technology, you would think that would be an easy way for them to learn, without them even realizing they are.

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It needs to come to that. The public school education system is failing our children, and failing us, as a country.

I remember a college accounting course I took was taught by a man who only taught part time and worked in private industry full time. He wasn’t what you call a professor, but I sure learned a lot from him. Especially in the actual practical application of accounting.

Now that’s what I call a “teacher.” Someone imparting real knowledge to those who can gain from it in a manner that they can.

My kids went to private school. Not all their teachers were degreed. They did have to pass certain requirements, but only had to be totally knowledgeable in the subject that they taught. The school cost less than half of what the public schools got per student.

Kudos to you for seeing to it that your children actually received an education. I agree, too, that it doesn’t take a degree. All that’s required, legally, is an 8th-grade education, and being 18 years old. I’ve witnessed an awful lot of success come out of that way of doing things.
In the same token, some miss out on a great deal. Not all, by far, but had I not been pushed at the age of 14, I might not have sought knowledge, myself.

Seeing how today’s children take to, and have their noses stuck in computer technology, you would think that would be an easy way for them to learn, without them even realizing they are.

Exactly. It is the way of the future, far less expensive to educate that way, and students catch on much quicker because they’re so tuned to it.

The one drawback I see is that if someone isn’t self-disciplined, he may be less inclined to follow through, and not to many children are.
IOW, it needs some direction/discipline from someone in charge keeping students focused on meeting a goal.

I’ve had a number of those instructors who have either been in industry, or are at the present. Most of them were good teachers, but at least one was a miserable teacher. He may have known his subject matter, but he couldn’t teach, and was never available to ask questions. He was from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, and it seems that certain of them are required to do a teaching stint at the University (Wright State), and it doesn’t seem to matter whether or not they can teach. Over half of the class (including myself) dropped out after the mid-term exam. And it was open-book, open-notes, take-home. Trouble was, there was nothing in our book or our notes that covered most of what was in the exam.

And not only that, I was stuck on the current program that was due immediately after the exam, and I couldn’t get any help.

I once had an econ teacher in college who taught without using the text book and then one time we had a substitute teacher who gave a test which was straight out of the text book. Some of the material had not been covered by the original teacher in his lectures.

Well, this was the same teacher doing the lectures and giving the test.

Unfortunately, sending your kids to private school doesn’t EXEMPT you from paying for the public schools, too!

I know. My dad used to complain about the school part on his property taxes, as he said; “why should I, my kids are grown”. Yet he was a Democrat…go figure. :grin:

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Property taxes, no matter what they go towards, are evil. They need to be obliterated!
Our county was/still is (?) working toward that end by instilling a Homesteader’s Credit, and it grows a little each year. We’re now up to -$350. We’re getting there!

I would not mind making up the difference elsewhere in another form of a tax.
Problem with that is, people w/o children in the the public school system ought to receive an exemption and/or credit, and I’m unsure how that could be implemented if something like a sales tax takes the place of property tax.

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PA has a homesteader’s credit, but it’s fixed. Hasn’t changed since they implemented it. And our taxes keep going up and up and up . . .
I’m not sure about Ohio, but when I lived in Illinois, an increase in taxes for the schools had to be approved by the voters. This came to my attention when we moved to the little town of Pekin. A brand new high school had been built on an anticipated government grant, which never materialized. So they were frantically trying to pass a tax levy for the school system, and it had already failed at least twice by the time we got there. It did eventually pass.

I got my tax bill the other day and it went up $200. I asked why and I was given an answer that seemed like voodoo economics. In it was listed seven items for pensions

Takes a referendum in AR for any tax to pass; any city, any town.

A brand new high school had been built on an anticipated government grant, which never materialized.
Whoever pulled that stunt, putting the cart before the horse, deserved to be sued for all he was worth. Then his carcass thrown in the slammer.

So they were frantically trying to pass a tax levy for the school system, and it had already failed at least twice by the time we got there. It did eventually pass.

Quite the stunt.

For pensions? So, iow, the county/city spent the pension money, then just up and decided to pad everyone’s property tax to make up for it?
That’s what it sounds like to me.
A $200 rise in property tax - especially if none of your property went up in value - is unconscionable. And people aren’t storming the Bastille?