Adonis Diaries

Archive for May 15th, 2010

 Updating supervisory structure for term papers and thesis (May 14, 2010)

There is a fast growing trend among students to relying mostly on the internet for information and data.  These pieces of intelligence are fraught with inaccuracies and flawed experimental designs.  Thus, personal responsibility to exercising proper reflection is inevitable:  A process that requires proper educational training in tender age, and adequate monitoring and control systems during university and higher educational stages.

A culture is the process of acquiring proper education and following it up with continuing education for updated knowledge in global problems and global alternative resolutions.  The proper process is getting trained for individual responsibilities in learning various perspectives to approaching challenges. 

Comparing the sources of differences in cultures and civilization is a great highway to grasping mankind alienations.  We can no longer take it for granted that the written knowledge is necessarily accurate and valid as fundamental truths.

The mass of information and intelligence being quickly disseminated globally require higher level of individual training in reflection and synthesis.

Scientific reasoning is not necessarily accessible to common people who failed to learn the adequate and proper courses for experimenting ideas and hypothesis.  Thus, accessible mass information and intelligence can become more confusing for scientific reasoning to those not initiated to proper reasoning and reflection.

Since global resolutions require the participation of the general public into contributing opinions and pressuring multinational institutions and companies into considering viable directions, and schooling should focus on the proper individual reflecting processes and comprehending the differences among variable and importance of interactions among variables.

I suggest three phases to improving the new intelligence power of the new generation; the phases can be implemented concomitantly. 

The first phase is that accredited universities invest on independent supervisors in order to updating supervisory structure for term papers and thesis. The independent supervisor will have a job description of monitoring accuracy in the references mentioned in term papers and thesis.  These professional supervisors in the fields would have several tasks:

First, until there are sufficient supervisors supporting and assisting mentors, advisors, and professors, they can start by sampling term papers and thesis for internet references and check the accuracy of the articles and the validity of the sources.

Thus, the next step would be to report to the respective departments the inaccurate internet references and articles according to a process that would alert the internet providers to what are published that do not satisfy scientific standards in validity and accuracy. This would be a first step into filtering information and knowledge that are at best inaccurate and that are frequently referred to or read by students.  It is difficult to rectify inaccurate information acquired once read and impressed upon our memory.

Second, the independent supervisor should be professional in navigating the net and scientifically accredited in the field.  You might wonder whether the newer generation of professors are not that proficient in surfing efficiently the net and thus, cannot do this task instead of supervisors. 

I claim that surfing the net need specialization because new languages and processes are frequently updated and upgraded that regular professors never find the energy or time to follow-up on these time-consuming re-learning of languages that are not necessarily compatible with previously acquired skills.

The second phase or another more efficient alternative, in addition to surfing supervisors, is to demand of students to summarize the references listed on term papers.  If this method cannot guarantee that students have effectively read the reference source, at least it will impress upon them to reducing the reference list to the most reliable and relevant sources. The advisor would have leverage to ask for detailed summaries if he suspected that the student was slack in focused reading and analysis.

I find it very useful to encouraging students to taking seriously their term papers by demanding that the first draft be handwritten. Nothing like the tested traditional support system of paper and pencil to enhancing focus and analytical reasoning; this is another method to encouraging visiting libraries for hard copy sources and taking notes.

The third and most important phase is offering the proper educational formation in tender age as to the procedures of conducting experiments.  This method is the best training for the brain to asking the correct questions and formulating critical problems in reports and research publications.

Proper understanding of the protocols and rationale of conducting term papers should receive high priority from accredited institutions in order to disseminate valid control and administration of educational programs. 

This current generation was submitted to frequent new languages to learn and assimilate  within a few years that it is proficient in comprehending the many interactions among the audio-visual field.  Education and training in comprehending the interactions among variables in other fields of studies should be easier to assimilate for this new generation: it already acquired a new powerful form of intelligence that previous generations had not the opportunity, but to work within paper and pencil support system.

New generation: Newer brain structure

Your brain changed structure.

In my previous article “Time changed: Your kids are updating your language” I exposed the notion that mankind is currently forced to change reflexes and languages every couple of years.

A century ago, you could be secured a life-time rite of passage, relative to knowledge you have acquired in high school, using the paper and pen support system.

Currently, during your professional life, you have got to learn a new language every four years, and update your knowledge in your profession if you want to stay in the rat race in the job market.

A language is a communication means among professionals in specific fields; thus, if companies or institutions realize that you failed to update with new technology upgrades and support systems, you might be suspected to be the dinosaur kind who refuses to sail within the fast pace race.

Most likely, the new support systems have been changed and your production and information saving system is not compatible with the support, or the trained assistants you need to deal with.

Kids have no problems with new languages, even if they have no professions. You might have to beg your kids to initiate you to new languages and the functioning of new “performing” gadgets, no matter how the inventors claim that the new languages and objects are compatible with acquired skills and talents.

The promoters of new technologies are certified liars: the observed design looks like older versions, but to become professional in the usage of the new technology you have got to invest a lot of efforts learning the short cuts and hidden language codes and jargon that attest to your proficiency on the job market.

Do you know that in 1907, audiences of silent movies where assigned an “interpreter” holding a long stick, pointing to images in order to “explain” what is happening, the new language that people were not accustomed to?  It seems natural now to see and understand movies but mankind needed training and practice to comprehend the new language.  For example, people had trouble recognizing an actor seen in profile as being the same one seen in frontal images.

Jose Bergamin asked: “What have we irremediably lost as we learned to read?  What forms of knowledge that pre-historic people and cultures with no written language possessed that we no longer have?”  This question is manifold.

First, when can we state that mankind actually learned to read?

There were written languages that priesthood monopolized, but did the general public read and much less write?

What kinds of knowledge priesthood produced when more people were able to read?

Second, what kinds of knowledge mankind had or still have?  A satisfactory taxonomy of knowledge is required in order to conduct such kinds of research.

Third, what are the main differences in knowledge between civilizations with and without written languages?

There are people still alive telling you that they experienced invention of telegraph, trains, sound recorders, airplanes, movies, radio, television, and even computer; all this upheaval in a life time. What strikes me most in our current global civilization is that new languages used on new software are principally designed for the fresh and flexible minds of kids.

You hear that kids have fresh and flexible brains that “soak up” languages easily.

First, this poetic pronouncement does not explain what it is meant by flexible or fresh; in general, it is the verbal aspect in languages that is acquired more easily by kids; thus, it is the auditory brain that functions at a higher performance than the other brains.  In this case, how can we explain the non auditory performances in using computer languages and functions?

I contend that the region that separates the left and right hemisphere in the brain and which is responsible for communicating information must be undergoing qualitative structural changes.

May be the neurons and synapses in this region that indirectly communicated with specialized areas, after several filtering processes of data, have developed to be directly linked to special areas.

Thus, I contend that external sensory perceptions in the audio-visual technology breakthrough are bypassing the tedious routines that years of formal schooling in traditional knowledge support systems obstructed the direct links to appropriate brains.  Several generations during this century have inherited fragment of this structural changes in the brain, and this generation is very comfortable with new fast changing support systems: They were certainly given ample opportunities to developing the new mechanism.

Current technology in neuro-sciences can verify this hypothesis.

Our sensory brains are more interconnected in quantity and quality.  I feel that the specialized neurons are linking directly with the targeted brains as external signals are captured and thus, bypassing traditional relays and filtering mechanisms.

Kids can guess from the design of the gadget in shape, color, and textures what are the functions and to whom it is designed to target.  A different form of intelligence is taking roots that is capable of quicker interpretations of the interactions among many variables in the audio-visual fields.

It does not follow that kids are capable of interpreting interactions of more than four variables in fields other than audio-visual but I feel confident that they may assimilate interpretations of interactions quicker than non professional adults within shorter training sessions.  This should be an advantage in comprehending global problems and relevant global resolution alternatives.

The fast pace creation of new languages and support systems for composing, communicating, and disseminating knowledge have altered the structure of our brain.

Adult mankind has limited capabilities to adjusting his reflexes and mental power every couple of years to new learning requirements that are not compatible with basic knowledge that years of schooling have shaped.

Mankind is being subjected to technology as if he was a machine; as if has no other urgent alternative tasks to tackle but getting upgraded technologically; as if mankind has no emotional and moral instability problems to harness and resolve; as if mankind is not permitted peace of mind in his limited life span.

Global resolution of world problems are not going to be satisfactory if the mindset is focused on just technological progress , carried on that way.  The human factors in capabilities and limitations, and mankind emotional constitution have to be revisited by new technology inventors and multinational companies.

It is my feeling that soon, adults would be quickly outdated to teach kids newer languages for the job market. Technology has to take a long break in forcing new languages on new graduates in order to extend stability in life and give some meaning to rite of “knowledge passage” after graduation.

It is imperative economically and emotionally that professionals get emotional reprieves and also amortize investment in time, efforts, and cost of new support systems before newer technologies, guided by market share monopoly, pressure us to adopt new inventions that are not effectively compatible with previously learned skills and training.




May 2010

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