Thank you for all your wonderful and thought-provoking suggestions
for how to improve the general state of popular education. There were nine unique suggestions and some more from robhu
who tried to sneak round my one suggestion only stipulation. Foolish people! Do not cross me when I give explicit warning that I'm in a mean mood.
Anyway, I promised there would be prizes, so here goes with the winners. *drumroll*
leora: Be the one who acts. It's extremely original, and comes with some very interesting psychological background, and it's the kind of thing where simply being told it goes a long way towards getting the desired effect. I highly recommend you read leora's comments on the issue, because you'll likely learn something. gnimmel
with All the other people are real, valid human beings too
. The world would be so much a better place if this were generally understood, that I'd be quite prepared to live with general ignorance of matters scientific if I could have that. And it's deeply Utopian but she at least has the nugget of an implementation suggestion.
! You are hereby awarded some LJ paid time, or an equivalent donation to a charity of your choice. Let me know.
Thank you to all who participated in such an interesting discussion. I very much like having chewy stuff to think about that isn't my thesis, at the moment. I also like the way the competition drew comments from several people who aren't regulars in my LJ; it's always nice to meet new people or hear from habitual lurkers. Yay.
|Date:||March 12th, 2005 11:34 am (UTC)|
1 hours after journal entry, 03:34 am (leora's time)
I'm a big fan of correlation does not equal causation. If I do become a teacher and get to decorate a classroom of my own, one of the things I want is a big sign that says that. I have lots of fun examples of correlations with no causative relation, but a confounding factor that affects both.
Another sign I'd consider putting up would be:
3 out of 4 statisticians objected to the small sample size of this study.
since people tend to forget to check the sample size or the participant selection method, both of which are vital. One of the things I find a tad disturbing is that in many cases when a psychologist is citing information about what is normal human behavior, they really mean normal human behavior for psychology undergraduates.
|Date:||March 13th, 2005 09:54 pm (UTC)|
1 days after journal entry, 09:54 pm (livredor's time)
I like the idea of putting up signs in a classroom with significant facts. The sample size thing I think is secondary to understanding what you can and can't do with correlation, but I agree it's a useful tool in the general assessing evidence kit.
And so true about all these psychological studies performed on a very select group! When I went to university, I filled in a personality profile thing to add my name to a list of volunteers for psych experiments. I enjoy participating in them. But I found I was really in demand because I scored as 'confident' in my initial profile, and apparently it's really difficult to find 20-year-old women who are on the confident side of the scale.
|Date:||March 13th, 2005 10:05 pm (UTC)|
1 days after journal entry, 10:05 pm (livredor's time)
|(Link)|whenever I come across Utopias and Utopians in books they always seem to be incredibly self-obsessed
That's a very interesting point, kathrid
! I think it's partly to do with the fact that a lot of Utopias (including, of course, the original) are written with the express aim of showing that this kind of state is never achievable and all these high-sounding ideas wouldn't work at all well in practice.
But I think gnimmel
's suggestion would be truly Utopian, because if everyone understood that other people are real and valuable, then they wouldn't be tempted to be selfish and uncaring towards people outside their enlightened society.