“CONTEMPORARY MYTHS ABOUT THE PANACEA OF SUPERIOR EDUCATION”

* José Antonio Romero

 

Abstract:

A reflection on what the author considers are the mistaken ideas and appalling conditions of the high learning community. The author tries to identify the causes and the solutions that he believes can be effectively applied.

 

For decades witnessing a new era characterized as a time of change, which confirms the correctness of the phrase of Heraclitus in stating that all that remains is change. Essential reference point for education issues are heard here is the violent student protest in May 1968 shook the functioning of the academic structure of European and American universities, but like wildfire would spread worldwide. However, as evidenced by the ancient Eastern wisdom contained in the book of Ecclesiastes, "there is nothing new under the sun", another event without being of the magnitude of the above, but with the same spirit and inspiration, took place in southern Fifty years ago the continent known as Manifest Córdoba, where we read the following statement: "Young people no longer requests, demands that it recognize the right to externalize the thought itself." Concepts over the years would overflow in attempts to submit the autonomy of science for ideological bondage of political tutelage and the inconvenience of not less than the loss of healthy as pedagogical-didactic tenuous balance between the lectio ex cathedra The personal and group study, as well as the individual teacher-student relationships. As a result of this emerged a typology of student disastrous for the development of serious scientific activity demands of university life. The first category was the center of the pseudo-leftist student agitator and troublemaker who tried especially in the so-called "red decade" convert the classroom indoctrination forced field and field of training Marxist armed megalomaniac program aimed at society revolution , hidden behind the guise of reforming the structure of studies and faculty in order to promote the democratization of the university. The German universities of Leipzig and Tubingen, to name the two most outstanding examples of world-class figures in the field of philosophy and theology, one as president (Hans-Georg Gadamer), the other as an ordinary professor (Hans Küng) respectively , illustrated with qualified accounts of these thinkers the experiences of victims of abuses of underrepresented groups but very skilled at managing the physical and psychological violence at any price to get the goals pursued. Gadamer occupied the rectory of the University of Leipzig from January 21, 1946 until early November 1947. The philosopher gave up driving this prestigious alma mater to the inability to maintain long career of their high scientific level because of ideological pressures of the military forces of the Russian occupation and Communist political authorities who ran as a shock group rioters were clustered into the infamous association called the Collective of Democratic Student Work (AdS by its initials in German). With gross distortion of the word democracy, which in its proper meaning refers to the practice of free choice of authorities (political and State University) and annexed as freedom of academic research, but the Marxists dismiss as inadequate because it is simple bourgeois formalities with seasoned hand pass illusionist is subjected to semantic sleight going to mean egalitarian social order that runs with the privileges of the ruling class, including education. On behalf of the rights of workers long excluded from the university and runs the risk of being branded a bourgeois reactionary, proscribes the use of the word elite while promoting college more indiscriminate mass by eliminating the aristocratic remnants similar to the review of admission and with the disappearance of the quality criterion in the selection of student income, damage equally affecting the minimum scientific accreditation in providing faculty chairs. However, these acts constituted only a pale anticipation of the storm unleashed by the student rebellions in pursuit of a controversial university reform, with its ideological excesses were violently taken two decades later and whose foci were visible Berkeley, Berlin, Frankfurt and Paris . Although the protests in the small university town of Tübingen were not as violent as in the aforementioned cities, there are also expressions of the stridently radical force. Against the backdrop of a movement that claimed paternity heterodox Marxist ideological Herbert Marcuse, he again brandished the well-worn argument of the relatively low representation of the working class between the university students, this time on campus tubinguense uttered by the mouth of the sociologist Ralf Dahrendorf. Needless to say, such a motion is served, how could it be otherwise, to lash another assault on the academic demands of college access and the consequent deterioration of secondary education. Thus deepened the politicization of the concept of science that mediates this activity as an instrument of struggle for power and dominance of the public. In effect, degrades the scientific debate to the level of turmoil asambleario plebiscite. The intellectual rigor can not develop freely submitting to the success of political action, because of which comes to less than the quality of staff, to the extent that the prevailing conformation accommodating the inept mediocrity that, at the expense of hiding Truth, in climbing the condition that supports the political orientation suitable for the pressure group in power at the expense of performance who is in possession of the acquired excellence in fair play competition. The renowned Swiss theologian indicates that three types of rowdy students, unaware of the subjects they taught him and other colleagues, threw hand to prevent the normal development of the classes: the harmless protest meeting (teach-in), the less bland sitting or restraint (sit-in) and, finally, the violent takeover of a room or building to forcibly taken place by discussion (go-in). The second class of students, the naive and inexperienced, that despite the poor state of knowledge, is more interested in arguing than to receive information that looks so much lack, dreams of the ideal of self-teaching staff through which can suppress the lecture, which reduces the teacher's role to that file only be available if necessary. With the argument of convenience, superiority and usefulness of active learning methods proposed as an alternative to end the implementation of authoritarian education seminar, seen as an infallible remedy to resolve the miseries inherent in the domination of the teacher. To that end unduly emphasizes the undeniable value of the components of the maieutics Socratic dialogue, at the expense of another equally important element, the internalization or depth to which it gives access only the possession of sound knowledge, intertwined with a long moderate experience that enables them to sensitively during a class session. Hans Küng respect the resounding failure of his students about "sesentayochistas" in an attempt to replace the relationship between teacher and students by the students among themselves. The lack of basic knowledge on the issue led inexorably to address the inability to generate debate after a mediocre introduction and, even more, to the inability to provide satisfactory answers to questions based on the rest of the peers. The crux of the problem is they intend to oppose key moments in the process of teaching. In itself, diminish the importance of the lecture not only compromises the structure of subjects and courses, but the content and method of its own scientific discipline, which is not transmitted in an efficient and comprehensive. For most students master class meets very specific functions that are not able to cover personal study, group, or even the direct relationship between teacher and student. Indeed, without the fundamentals and essential borne lecture is not possible to study any individual or group. For this reason, the lecture provides an organization of matter that is adapted to the emerging needs of the student. Besides personal study guide provide a summary. Finally, it contains the most expeditious route for direct, comprehensive and systematic methodology. Often some students expressed indifference to detect the value of assistance to a lesson because they easily forget that more often than not study on their own initiative, they have the courage to strive minimally persistent exercise of the habit of listening properly or, Worse, they believe they can obtain optimal only documentation available for study. Unfortunately to address these limitations do not help the cultural environment that has driven the seminar model prevailing since the end of the Second World War, inspired more by the marketing technique that tends to influence public opinion motivationally that the academic experience intellectual work that emerged in the second half of the eighteenth century, aimed at the renewal of the method of study and research of the university system of Prussia. This fact distorts the rigorous task of teachers and students in a college level. It breaks the thin membrane that harmoniously unites otium (or the choir, which derive schule, school, scuola, école, school) of the vita contemplative, placed by Aristotle in the highest pedestal of virtue dianoetic, and negotium of the vita activa with clear impairment of the first and second arrogant supremacy. Destroyed the compass of the mean (in medio virtus) inherent in the educational ideal kalokagathía of Paideia, the same way that transcendental pulchrum et Bonum classical ontology, disappears the lodestar of the search for Veritas, a commitment that leads the emblem of the Universidad Francisco Marroquín, also its conditio sine qua non, the intellectual habit of studiousness, governed by the discipline that requires in-depth treatment of topics, not the immediacy of the surface passing curiosity. The above requirement must necessarily accompany the practice of gradual implementation of the seminars. Its exercise must begin with the introduction of the Proseminar (Proseminar). Its mission is to introduce theory and practice in the use of working tools of his career and of their disciplines. Why must address the core issues of their preparation: object, purpose, method, division, relationship related sciences with the discipline. That is, attempts to illustrate the most important issues of first year university courses how to practice the academic activities of his career. With this training the student should acquire the ability to participate in the real seminar (Hauptseminar) that will provide the critical depth on an issue important to take as a research group led by a teacher who coordinates without compromising the autonomy of each individual of the members making up the set. Only in this way the student is in a serious franchise to choose a topic that demands more courage in their development to demonstrate the suitability to work scientifically. The above seminar, called Oberseminar, scientific development is aimed at its members to have the opportunity to provide an original contribution to the advancement of science.