Those who succeed in today's school often do so by learning what the rules are and slavishly following them. Occasionally, in the last few years, I taught an undergraduate course that attempted to get students to think for themselves. (I taught this course twice at Yale and twice at Northwestern. It was disguised as a computer science course at Yale and listed as a psychology course at Northwestern.) In this course, I attempt to get students to do some original thinking. The class focuses on discussing unanswered questions about human thought processes. The students may say what they want, they just have to do so in a rigorous manner. I say very little. Many students are uncomfortable with this situation. They want to know what I think and I refuse to tell them. They are reluctant to think for themselves, and are eager to tell me what they think I want to hear. My failure to encourage this kind of behavior leaves many of them confused about what it means to succeed at this game. Academic success is what drives them, and I take away the usual means.
The Effect of Grades
Where am I in the content of the book?