Results 1 to 22 of 22

Thread: Question About College Education...

  1. #1
    Batman's New Side Kick Psyren's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    2,586

    Default Question About College Education...

    Okay, so maybe this is a dumb question, but I'm going to go ahead and throw it out there simply because I'm curious.

    What exactly is the difference between say IUPUI and Harvard (Don't point out the obvious, I'm well aware of the primary differences). My question is in regards to the education.

    I go to IUPUI and have always wondered, what exactly is the educational difference? Take for example the following.

    If I was taking a math class at IUPUI, and had the following equation.

    2x = 6. Solve for x.

    At IUPUI, the answer would be 3.

    At Harvard, the answer would also be 3.

    If students are taking classes that teach the same material, why pay thousands of dollars more for Harvard than for IUPUI, Ball State, IU, Purdue or anywhere else? Are students simply paying for prestige? Granted, Harvard and schools like it are known for law and other specialties, but in regards to basic type courses, why pay much more for the same material?

    I know that isn't college level math, but that's just a simple example. Math does not change, ever, regardless of school/professor. So what is the difference exactly between Harvard, Princeton, Yale/others and your "normal" university/college?

    Any input is appreciated. I've always just been curious about this for some time.
    Last edited by Psyren; 11-11-2010 at 04:00 PM.
    Stop quoting people I have on ignore!

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    St. Bonaventure, NY
    Age
    21
    Posts
    16,832
    Mood

    Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    im sure harvard looks a lot better on a job application.

  3. #3
    Batman's New Side Kick Psyren's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    2,586

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Quote Originally Posted by pacer4ever View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    im sure harvard looks a lot better on a job application.
    Right, I understand that. But my question is about the educational difference. If the courses are the same material, is there really any difference in education?
    Stop quoting people I have on ignore!

  4. #4
    Member Since86's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Muncie
    Posts
    20,872

    Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    I would think that because of Harvard's requirements in order to get into the school, they would start off at different points. Most schools offer different levels of entry math, for example.

    I would imagine that Harvard only has one math course, or atleast a very limited number, and you have to start at that point. Same goes for english etc.

    And because you start off at a higher level, you finish at a higher level as well.

    EDIT: I know at BSU I've taken some courses that were Soph/Jr high school level. I wish my prof would have just emailed me my assignments and told me when the tests were, and I wouldn't have ever shown up. (eventhough I hardly went anyways)
    Last edited by Since86; 11-11-2010 at 04:12 PM.

  5. #5
    Wasting Light Hicks's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Posts
    52,583
    Mood

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    EDIT: I know at BSU I've taken some courses that were Soph/Jr high school level. I wish my prof would have just emailed me my assignments and told me when the tests were, and I wouldn't have ever shown up. (eventhough I hardly went anyways)
    They didn't kill your grade for poor attendance? Before I got to BSU, I was told that in college you didn't take attendance, but I got a wakeup call when I got there in 02-03. Seemed like a lot of classes dinged you pretty good if you didn't attend class.

  6. #6
    Batman's New Side Kick Psyren's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    2,586

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    I would think that because of Harvard's requirements in order to get into the school, they would start off at different points. Most schools offer different levels of entry math, for example.

    I would imagine that Harvard only has one math course, or atleast a very limited number, and you have to start at that point. Same goes for english etc.

    And because you start off at a higher level, you finish at a higher level as well.

    EDIT: I know at BSU I've taken some courses that were Soph/Jr high school level. I wish my prof would have just emailed me my assignments and told me when the tests were, and I wouldn't have ever shown up. (eventhough I hardly went anyways)
    Right, that makes sense.

    I've always wondered about that and what exactly the differences were, if there are classes that would be considered equals.
    Stop quoting people I have on ignore!

  7. #7
    Batman's New Side Kick Psyren's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    2,586

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Quote Originally Posted by Hicks View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    They didn't kill your grade for poor attendance? Before I got to BSU, I was told that in college you didn't take attendance, but I got a wakeup call when I got there in 02-03. Seemed like a lot of classes dinged you pretty good if you didn't attend class.
    That's what I was told as well. I'm in my 2nd year at IUPUI and nearly every class will take quite a big chunk out of your grade if you don't show up. And most will actually give you points if you do show up.
    Stop quoting people I have on ignore!

  8. #8
    Whale Shepherd cdash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    The Sprawl
    Age
    29
    Posts
    16,936

    Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    That's what I was told as well. I'm in my 2nd year at IUPUI and nearly every class will take quite a big chunk out of your grade if you don't show up. And most will actually give you points if you do show up.
    Thankfully, most classes at IU are too big to dock points for attendance. I would have never gotten through college had there been mandatory attendance.

  9. #9
    Batman's New Side Kick Psyren's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    2,586

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Quote Originally Posted by cdash View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    Thankfully, most classes at IU are too big to dock points for attendance. I would have never gotten through college had there been mandatory attendance.
    Yea they only class we don't take attendance in at IUPUI is classes in the lecture hall.
    Stop quoting people I have on ignore!

  10. #10
    Nerd.
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Greenwood, IN
    Age
    32
    Posts
    5,051
    Mood

    Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    All I know is that I work with a person who graduated from Yale and a person who graduated from Harvard and they are two of the most ridiculous, dumb, and inane people I have ever met.

    I've never had any other experiences with anyone from Yale/Harvard.

  11. #11
    Nerd.
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Greenwood, IN
    Age
    32
    Posts
    5,051
    Mood

    Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    I would think that because of Harvard's requirements in order to get into the school, they would start off at different points. Most schools offer different levels of entry math, for example.

    I would imagine that Harvard only has one math course, or atleast a very limited number, and you have to start at that point. Same goes for english etc.

    And because you start off at a higher level, you finish at a higher level as well.

    EDIT: I know at BSU I've taken some courses that were Soph/Jr high school level. I wish my prof would have just emailed me my assignments and told me when the tests were, and I wouldn't have ever shown up. (eventhough I hardly went anyways)
    Math courses at Harvard...

    http://coursecatalog.harvard.edu/icb...econtent695860

  12. The Following User Says Thank You to Stryder For This Useful Post:


  13. #12
    Member idioteque's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    washington dc
    Age
    28
    Posts
    9,450

    Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    My experience is that the more historically renowned a school is, the more leeway you are given to conduct independent study throughout your undergrad education. If a school is more likely to accept people who did mediocre or worse in high school the school is more likely to tailor its curriculum to hold the students' hands a little bit more. I imagine this has to do with maintaining a good retention rate, which can improve a school's academic standing.

    I went to George Washington University, which I consider to be a good school but still a far cry from Harvard, and I don't think attendance was taken in any of my courses after the first semester of my sophomore year.

  14. #13
    flexible and robust SoupIsGood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lappy Go Hucky
    Age
    26
    Posts
    17,540

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    The main difference is the quality of teacher they're able to attract. For better or worse, at Harvard/Yale you're more likely to be studying under an expert in their field. Makes little difference if one just wants to grab a bachelor's and run, but for someone looking to make serious contributions to a field, working under one of the best is a great start. what idioteque points out is also one of the main differences. The more prestigious the university the closer they are to the Oxford/Cambridge model of mostly independent study.

    They've also got the best libraries, and likely the best access to labs and other tech resources. They have students who are either a) very good at resume-building and standardized test-taking, or b) legacy kids. Sometimes that means you'll be in commune with other great students, and sometimes that just means you'll be around a lot of careerist grade-grubbers.
    You, Never? Did the Kenosha Kid?

  15. #14
    Batman's New Side Kick Psyren's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    2,586

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Thanks for all the input guys!!!

    Feel free to continue to discuss
    Stop quoting people I have on ignore!

  16. #15

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Last year 3,200 students who were valedictorians of their high school classes applied to Harvard. Most of them were NOT admitted. In fact, among 22,796 applicants last year, only 2,074 students overall were admitted.

    2,150 of the APPLICANTS scored a perfect 800 on their SAT verbal test; more than 3,200 APPLICANTS scored an 800 on the SAT math. So, many people with a perfect SAT score on one or both parts didn't get in either. Among "non-legacy" applicants, i.e. not following in the footsteps of an alumnus Mom and/or Dad, the target numbers are likely a lot higher. Basically you have to have stunning scores, near-perfect grades (top 1% in a public school for sure), from a high school with a very good reputation, with good letters of recommendation, and with lots of extra-curricular activities to get in the door.

    Because of all of this, when you get there the classes do not begin at the same level. Classes are tougher and more fast-paced, expectations are higher, teachers are more knowledgable (though not necessarily better at explaining things).
    Last edited by Slick Pinkham; 11-12-2010 at 10:19 AM.
    The poster "pacertom" since this forum began (and before!). I changed my name here to "Slick Pinkham" in honor of the imaginary player That Bobby "Slick" Leonard picked late in the 1971 ABA draft (true story!)

  17. #16
    flexible and robust SoupIsGood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lappy Go Hucky
    Age
    26
    Posts
    17,540

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Hmmm. I think the most sensible conclusion we can make from that info is that for schools like Harvard/Yale/etc., SAT and ACT scores are not as important as most may think.

    From the Harvard website:

    Acceptance rate: 8%
    Top 10% of high school students: 95%
    SAT score (25/75 percentile): 2080-2370
    ACT score (25/75 percentile): 31-35
    So, anyone not within that range of scores probably stands no chance. But compared to most schools, they get an absurd amount of applicants that fall within this range, and when it comes to picking between the person that got a 2250 on their SAT and the person who scored 2400--how to choose? Both scores essentially indicate that the person will kick *** in school; I've read occasionally that the elite schools thus pay a lot of attention to practical indicators of future success: contribution to one's community, leadership posts, unusual accomplishments, etc. Otherwise they've got nothing to weed one near-perfect applicant out from another.

    So, for the teenager looking to make it into Harvard or Yale, I'd say that if one already has a 2250ish SAT or 34ish ACT, instead of spending one's time turning that excellent score into a perfect score, I'd do something else to distinguish yourself from the great mass of applicants. Get something published in the local paper, apply to become a lab assistant somewhere, seek out an internship. . . . stuff like that.

    I don't recommend doing what I did. . . I had those scores by the start of my junior year, and then laid around on my *** for two years, stuck to the tube and absorbing ungodly amounts of ESPN and Becker re-runs. (Ted Danson was so worth it though.)
    Last edited by SoupIsGood; 11-12-2010 at 01:13 PM.
    You, Never? Did the Kenosha Kid?

  18. #17
    Member Since86's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Muncie
    Posts
    20,872

    Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Quote Originally Posted by Hicks View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    They didn't kill your grade for poor attendance? Before I got to BSU, I was told that in college you didn't take attendance, but I got a wakeup call when I got there in 02-03. Seemed like a lot of classes dinged you pretty good if you didn't attend class.
    Depended on the class/prof.

  19. The Following User Says Thank You to Since86 For This Useful Post:


  20. #18
    flexible and robust SoupIsGood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Lappy Go Hucky
    Age
    26
    Posts
    17,540

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    I hate attendance. Make it feel like the prof's your nanny.
    You, Never? Did the Kenosha Kid?

  21. #19
    Batman's New Side Kick Psyren's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    2,586

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Quote Originally Posted by SoupIsGood View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    I hate attendance. Make it feel like the prof's your nanny.
    I agree. But, if you're lucky enough to have a nice prof who gives you points for being there, it's a nice perk.
    Stop quoting people I have on ignore!

  22. #20
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Oakland, CA
    Posts
    923

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    As mentioned above, the independent research and study angle is a pretty big thing. College is less about learning equations and more about trying to make observations or solve problems or do other things that have not been done before. Every school does this to some degree, but the higher up you go the more common (or required) things like UG theses become.

    Student/Faculty Ratio is also really important. A lot of the people I go to school with now that did their UG work at LibArt schools and Ivies never had classes with more than 25 people. When they got out of intro/survey courses, they never had more than 10. When there are only 10 people in a discussion driven class, you go places that lectures never reach, and you are motivated to keep up with the reading as well. You also create better personal relationships.

    However, even if assuming your original analogy is true (schools teach the same stuff, so it doesn't matter academically) there is a huge advantage from a networking and competition perspective. The kids at Ivies are either (1) academically elite students who have also made their mark on the world in some capacity, or (2) legacy kids. Either way, its useful to know them, know their circles, know their types.

    Not to mention the alumni events, where you get to listen to, and sometimes meet, captains of industry, politicians, etc. Lower tier schools have some of the same, just less.

    If you are driven and choose your school wisely, you can go to a low tier state school and study under a academic superstar in your field of choice and make your mark. For the less driven folks, like myself, the extra requirements can be good because it forces us to take those extra steps and learn some new stuff. But you can't get the networking. You may not need it, may not be able to take advantage of it, may not like it, and may not even ever use it. But its still some heavy stuff.

    Bottom line is, if you can go, you should. But if you can't, don't let it bother you. Being brilliant, driven, and lucky is all you really need (driven being the most important. I specialized in the luck department). Plus, you'll get a second shot when you apply to grad school. If you destroyed your UG GPA and the GRE/MCAT/LSAT and made your mark on the world while an UG, you'll get in anywhere and get all that koosh when it really matters.

    And math definitely changes. If you're lucky enough to work with a math superstar professor, you can be a part of that change.
    Last edited by judicata; 11-15-2010 at 04:44 AM.

  23. #21
    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    32,708

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Wow, I guess I am old - there was no such thing as taking attendance in college when I went. (I wish there was because i always showed up)

    Harvard vs IUPUI as far as getting a job after. I think it depends on the career you are looking at. In general though I don't think there is that much future earnings difference. (big disclaimer: that is assuming other things are equal. Those who get into Harvard are better students than those that get into IUPUI across the board. - My point is lets say you are someone who can get into either, but because of costs, you decide that IUPUI is for you. I think 5 -10 years out of school it won't make much difference to your earning power at all.

    After my first real job no one has ever asked about the college I went to. I think getting a college degree from somehwere is good - it takes away one thing that can help weed you out of the hiring.

    I think most people who go to Harvard and go into $200K in debt are crazy
    Last edited by Unclebuck; 11-15-2010 at 02:11 PM.

  24. #22
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Age
    28
    Posts
    5,918

    Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo

    Default Re: Question About College Education...

    Two things:

    1. I was at a small liberal arts college, and attendance was MANDATORY in many of my classes. Business classes 3rd and 4th year not so much, but luckily (or not) for me I was on a first name basis with almost all of my teachers so if I was gone I got a email asking me if I was ok.

    2. I could not agree and disagree with UB at the same time. After your first job most places do not care about your GPA, and they do not care if you went to South Harmon Institude of Technoogy or Yale.

    With that said, it is crazy to discount the connections you can get from a ivy league (or pretigious) college.

    Hell, I only have a fraternity connection (Sigma Chi) and when I wear my letters at work I have numerous peopel stop and talk to me and mentioned how they were in XXX sorority or fraternity.

    I can only imagine the amazing network you would get being at a Harvard or a Yale or Notre Dame.

    Granted, at the end of the day, I am a firm beleiver you make your own luck and that even if you go to a small tiny college you can make it.

    However, it may be harder then someone who went to a "name" college as I am also a firm beleiver in "It is not so much what you know as much as it is who you know"

Similar Threads

  1. College Night Ticket Question
    By ZepZach in forum Indiana Pacers
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 12-14-2009, 09:45 PM
  2. The PD NBA Draft - #8 New York
    By Jose Slaughter in forum Indiana Pacers
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 06-08-2009, 11:10 PM
  3. The PD NBA Draft - #7 Golden State
    By Jose Slaughter in forum Indiana Pacers
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 06-05-2009, 10:06 AM
  4. 3-18-2004
    By Ragnar in forum Indiana Pacers
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 03-22-2004, 01:26 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •