[KLUG Advocacy] Re: [KLUG Members] Dropping CIS enrollments

Robert G. Brown bob at whizdomsoft.com
Sun Aug 22 21:05:40 EDT 2004

I'm moving this thread to advocacy, with this message.

On Sun, 22 Aug 2004 11:02:21 -0400, Adam Williams  wrote:

>> >> IMO "the word" is out, post tech-bust, post-9/11, post-Military-manuevers,
>> >> post-whatever-else-youplease, that CIS/CS "ain't where it's at" anymore.
>> >> The money seekers have gone elsewhere (where?)... 
>> >People went into CIS for the money?!
>> Once upon a time, indeed! I can't remember who was President when this
>> was understood, but it happoened... honest!
>Wow!  I'll tka eyour word for it.
I looked it up.. the Presidents involved were Nixon, Ford, and Carter.

>> I've heard about that on the radio -
>> The radio?!? What's that? :)
>Just an antique technology I have a fondness for.
My kids called it "TV without the pictures". They also called a Selectric 
typewriter "A printer without the computer".

>> Hopefully, colleges (CS and CIS degress) are more than glorified trade
>> schools, and we've seen the transitory aspect of mere certs.

>I think we are see-ing a re-orging of the cert word.  With some rising to
>cerdibility while the chaff is swpt away;  I wonder if anyone has counted
>the number of certs available in the market (different certs that is).  I
>supect it has peaked and is now declining.
There's bound to be a something of a fall-off in these things. With too much 
overlap, you're going to get some that are accepted, and others that are less 

>Maybe we should just move to a total-cert word and forget about degrees.  
>Offer something like a "basic literacy" cert, a "corporate ettiquette" cert,
>or even a "Can follow instructions" cert. Then just pick applicants with the
>right combo.
The problem with this system is that it's too modular, and it does not have a 

The main difference between "trade schools" and "certifications" and a 
conventional higher education is that the latter is intended and expected
to provide a broad grounding in subjects that are not nessesarily related
to the skills required to earn a living, or assure a potential employer that
an applicant is qualified to provide a given function to the organization.

The educated person of a century ago was schooled in history, at least one 
foriegn language, classical mathematics and logic, lierature, and writing.
The notion that one persued a higher education merely for gain would strike 
most educated peoiple in 1904 as quite crass. Education was a pre-requisite 
for good citizenship and participation in public affairs.

Thr current system of education is largely a product of the GI bill and the 
post-WW-II era of mass education as the armies returned to civilian life. It
became clear, by the late 50's that people who didn't get a good education 
were going to fall behind. Now what we're seeing (say, in the last 10-15
years, perhaps more) is that it is possible to get a higher education AND
fall behind anyway, since a large mass of people has that level of education
(or so they beleive).

To answer this demand, Colleges and universities scaled up, and in doing so 
became less exclusive, and more like job training centers. Some programs 
established good professional development standards, as has been related about 
CPA's. Others (like many hard sciences) retrenched a bit, and the bar was 
raised for real contributors, to the Masters and Doctoral level (physics is 
a good example of this: try getting a good research position with less than a 
Masters from a top school!). At the same time, schools of higher education 
diversified as new fields opened up in many areas in response to an explosion 
of subjects, under many influences, everything from the Cold War to the Civil 
Rights movement, globalization, and ethnic awareness.

Certification directs modular, specific training in a particular set of skills, 
a working knowledge of how to use them, and when. While that's useful, it's 
not the same as a higher education, and it's simplistic to think that one can 
or "should" replace the other. In practice, the two can complement each
other. Perhaps the next generation or so we'll see that.

							---> RGB <---

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