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October 24, 2011

How to Think vs. What to Think

How to Think vs. What to Think

Over at The Atlantic, Edward Tenner notes a surprising trend. There's been significant growth in the number of philosophy and religious studies majors during this recession. It's still a relatively small number compared to the "more marketable" majors like business and engineering, but the number of four-year graduates in this group has grown 46% in the last decade, which is higher than growth rates of programs like psychology or history.

I think this is a good sign, and it's not just because I studied philosophy and religion. I think it's at least an indication that we're beginning to realize there's more to education than just acquiring technical knowledge. To be an educated person used to mean someone who knew a lot about a lot. Over the last century, that's been reduced to someone who can do specific with a particular skill set. Maybe we're learning that knowing the "if" and "why" of something is just as important as knowing the "how."

I hope so, because knowing how to think is just as important as knowing what to think. For, I'm John Stonestreet.

Further Reading

Is Philosophy the Most Practical Major?
Edward Tennor | The Atlantic | October 16, 2011

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