In a new piece at American Thinker, Eileen F. Toplansky writes of her frustration with college students who are unprepared for higher ed and the fact that some schools enable the problem.

Dysfunctional Literacy

In the two and four-year institutions of higher learning where I teach, they have “purchased access [so instructors can] attend a live online seminar on “helping Unprepared Students Succeed in the College Classroom.” With “more and more students arriving on campus without the tools they need to succeed,” they invariably drop out or fail their classes. This seminar promises to be a panacea for all these difficulties.

The seminar aims to introduce strategies that will “promote student engagement” in addition to getting “students to buy in to [the] course and its requirements.” Ultimately the instructors will be able to “guide students to sound decision making by giving them choices with well-defined consequences.” And, of course we are enjoined to “make content more relevant for students.”

This culturally relevant teaching was made popular by Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings in the early 1990s. Please note that “culturally relevant teaching is a pedagogy” which displays “cultural competence” or “skill at teaching in a cross-cultural or multicultural setting to enable each student to relate course content to his or her cultural context.” Basically it “often deals specifically with instruction of African American students in the United States” but is not limited to this group.

And with these “novel” ideas, instructors will be helped to “respond confidently and effectively to performance issues such as partially or completely unread homework assignments,” students handing in “incomplete homework” and “course assignments that are sloppily completed or completely ignored.”

This is the state of higher education in America today! Of course, this is not about dealing with a student body that has no interest in higher education — either because the love of learning is nonexistent or because the student is simply not capable of doing college level work; rather it is about the bottom line as these “schools have a lot riding on improved retention — reputation, rankings, and financial stability.

Read the original article:
Dysfunctional Literacy (American Thinker)