Dumbing Down. Is it true?

  • Kazachok

    Posts: 415

    Dec 12, 2013 5:50 PM GMT
    I heard a bunch of times that society as a whole is getting dumber, and that the kids of today are not as smart as the kids of the past. And actually, my province's math curriculum was revised recently (my cohort was one of the last to have the old curriculum, thankfully) and it was even on the news a month back that parents pretty much have to reteach their kids math. Also, first year university students are apparently fairing badly these days in math. So that's one example of "dumbing down."
    So do you think that society is being dumbed down, and do you have any examples from your area?
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    Dec 12, 2013 5:54 PM GMT
    Back in the day when I did exams they were harder than nowadays, so even though you kids got better marks than me, you are still dumber. However, before I did them the standard was the same consistent one.
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Dec 12, 2013 7:33 PM GMT
    I think the way we learn is changing, but we sure know a lot more about genetics, astronomy, and other sciences than we did a generation ago.
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    Dec 12, 2013 7:42 PM GMT
    No, what they know is different.

    Us who were born within the late 80s and early 90s were given so many different way to learn new concepts and our curriculum constantly changed. In 4th grade I learned my times tables. It's now being brought into 3rd grade classrooms. I wasn't required to learn a second language, yet they're teaching Spanish in 2nd grade now. AP wasn't even offered to my age group, but two years younger than me saw AP classes in subjects I always wanted to specialize in.

    It's the timing and change of education. You better believe some of these kids that are currently in grade school could teach you a thing or two. Having a bullshit standardized test never accurately portrayed intuition, street smarts or a child's thought process. Just what a school told them.
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    Dec 12, 2013 8:02 PM GMT
    One word: television.

    I watched a lot of tv when I was a kid but tv wasn't as bad back then; there wasn't all the trashy stuff and obviously stupid stuff like there is now. TV took itself more seriously back then.

    I stopped watching tv years ago, and I mean zero tv; I don't have cable and can't get a signal over the air, it's just hooked up to the game consoles. Whenever I do watch it, when I'm visiting someone, I'm always amazed at how much crap there is on tv.
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    Dec 12, 2013 8:06 PM GMT
    I don't know if people are actually dumber, but it seems like people don't have as much common sense today.
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    Dec 12, 2013 8:28 PM GMT
    Idiocracy. Fictitious comedy now, documentary in the future. icon_lol.gif
  • wellwell

    Posts: 2265

    Dec 13, 2013 1:23 AM GMT
    xrichx saidIdiocracy. Fictitious comedy now, documentary in the future. icon_lol.gif



    Ya, it really is that bad. I rent rooms to unm students; it's gratifying and alarming simultaneously. I blame congress, for having approved of the Department Of Education. Perhaps, I'll display my flag upside down; and @ half mast, from now on.
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    Dec 13, 2013 1:59 AM GMT
    I really don't know if people are smarter or dumber but I can say for sure that everything is being dumbed down.
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2605

    Dec 13, 2013 2:12 AM GMT
    I`m not sure people are less intelligent than they once were. I suspect every older generation thinks its brighter than succeeding ones. My father certainly thought so of mine.
    The modern media does seem broader but shallower than previously, with a terror of being too difficult or boring that turns viewers off. Television/movie material seems designed for increasingly short attention spans.
    In the UK the culture has always been rather anti-intellectual, unlike much of Europe.
    On exam results, I think they`re rising due to ever more effective exam coaching and preparation rather than the exams being instrinsically easier; though this does tend to degrade educational culture as schools and colleges become increasingly little more than certificate 'factories'.
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Dec 13, 2013 2:24 AM GMT
    I think the exposure to media at a young age is detrimental to a kid's developmental process. TV and computers are everywhere in people's homes now - kid's bedrooms, kitchens, minivans, etc.

    I've also heard that kids aren't being taught things like multiplication and division tables, which I think is a mistake because it helps teach progressive logic. There seems to be more focus on the result and not the process.
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    Dec 13, 2013 2:41 AM GMT
    I was an advanced student in math and foreign language alike. AP Calc my junior year of high school. Honors recognition for my Italian in college. But I might be the wrong example, cuz I'm kind of an Aspie-esque individual. (That is, not a neurotypical)
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    Dec 13, 2013 2:49 AM GMT
    I noticed kids are staring blanking into space more.. and seem to understand less it would seem just by observing them..

    As a kid I Always knew right from wrong and read peoples expressions very well and never understood kids who didn't even back then but.... I do think school curriculums get harder over the years though
  • metta

    Posts: 39108

    Dec 13, 2013 2:56 AM GMT
    A lot of it has to do with how much money your parents have. Parents with higher incomes tend to have children that do better, on average. And it is no accident. There are children that go to public school in very good school districts, such as San Marino in CA, where almost every child has their own private tutor.


    College Board: SAT Scores Going Down As GPAs Rise

    http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2013/09/26/sat-scores-college


    Children need to be put into an environment where they are striving to learn as much as they can. When they see the pressure on the other students, then they normally will feel pressure to do it as well. Parental involvement in their children's education is critical and should be required. Parents should not have children if they are not willing to do that.
  • metta

    Posts: 39108

    Dec 13, 2013 3:07 AM GMT
    Bill Gates: End-of-Life Care vs. Saving Teachers' Jobs (Education)

    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/1137164
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    Dec 13, 2013 3:55 AM GMT
    xrichx saidIdiocracy. Fictitious comedy now, documentary in the future. icon_lol.gif

    What part of it did you think was fictitious?

    How could people be getting dumber when everyone gets college degrees now? I mean, sure, they give bachelors degrees to people who can't count to 11 with their shoes on and haven't read a book with more words than pictures. But at least swindlers make billions on the student loans and bigger and bigger administration buildings get built.

    BTW:
  • ohioguy12

    Posts: 2024

    Dec 13, 2013 4:04 AM GMT
    TL;DR Can you please ask this question in 160 characters or less?
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    Dec 13, 2013 4:08 AM GMT
    TrevorMark saidNo, what they know is different.

    Us who were born within the late 80s and early 90s were given so many different way to learn new concepts and our curriculum constantly changed. In 4th grade I learned my times tables. It's now being brought into 3rd grade classrooms. I wasn't required to learn a second language, yet they're teaching Spanish in 2nd grade now. AP wasn't even offered to my age group, but two years younger than me saw AP classes in subjects I always wanted to specialize in.

    It's the timing and change of education. You better believe some of these kids that are currently in grade school could teach you a thing or two. Having a bullshit standardized test never accurately portrayed intuition, street smarts or a child's thought process. Just what a school told them.


    This is a good post.

    Six years ago I had to take a freshman engineering physics course as a 24-year-old graduate student to fulfill a prerequisite for another program. I was downright amazed at the intelligence of my 18-year-old classmates. These kids had already learned Calc 1, 2, and Differential Equations, and were good at it.

    I don't think most of the people in this thread decrying the educational achievements of kids these days would have stood a chance of passing the course.
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    Dec 13, 2013 4:20 AM GMT
    CFL_Oakland said
    TrevorMark saidNo, what they know is different.

    Us who were born within the late 80s and early 90s were given so many different way to learn new concepts and our curriculum constantly changed. In 4th grade I learned my times tables. It's now being brought into 3rd grade classrooms. I wasn't required to learn a second language, yet they're teaching Spanish in 2nd grade now. AP wasn't even offered to my age group, but two years younger than me saw AP classes in subjects I always wanted to specialize in.

    It's the timing and change of education. You better believe some of these kids that are currently in grade school could teach you a thing or two. Having a bullshit standardized test never accurately portrayed intuition, street smarts or a child's thought process. Just what a school told them.


    This is a good post.

    Six years ago I had to take a freshman engineering physics course as a 24-year-old graduate student to fulfill a prerequisite for another program. I was downright amazed at the intelligence of my 18-year-old classmates. These kids had already learned Calc 1, 2, and Differential Equations, and were good at it.

    I don't think most of the people in this thread decrying the educational achievements of kids these days would have stood a chance of passing the course.


    On the other hand, I have taught a core course to sophomores many, many times. Any math problems I make very easy - you can solve them by multiplying by two or ten. 90% of the class always just leaves them blank. We are talking pre-med students here.
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    Dec 13, 2013 4:33 AM GMT
    Yes I agree..the lack of focus on our nation' history and the loss of focusing on patriotism has come back to haunt this generation.I don't see any hope for this problem because our country is so bitterly divided on virtually every issue.I want the 80's back.Ryan
  • wellwell

    Posts: 2265

    Dec 13, 2013 5:34 AM GMT
    mindgarden said
    xrichx saidIdiocracy. Fictitious comedy now, documentary in the future. icon_lol.gif

    What part of it did you think was fictitious?

    How could people be getting dumber when everyone gets college degrees now? I mean, sure, they give bachelors degrees to people who can't count to 11 with their shoes on and haven't read a book with more words than pictures. But at least swindlers make billions on the student loans and bigger and bigger administration buildings get built.

    BTW:


    Dood, you nailed it. Please, put me on your buddy list !
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    Dec 13, 2013 5:35 AM GMT
    Actually I think the teachers have been dumbed down more
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    Dec 13, 2013 5:38 AM GMT
    I definitely think it's true. I think it's probably because of the fact that 99% of young people/teenagers use nothing but slang instead of regular English AND people are getting pregnant SO early on that the future generation is being taught by 16 year olds who say ratchet and swag in every other sentence. >_>
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 13, 2013 5:42 AM GMT
    When I learned math we weren't allowed to use calculators nor take notes into class.
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    Dec 13, 2013 5:45 AM GMT
    Obama care is an perfect example . No one in the day would have launched such a huge scheme without any scientific validity. Sentiment trumps science.