If I were to invent a college, and create things for instructors and professors to teach in that college, here are some "courses" I would consider offering. I've included my own opinions in the form of elaboration and explanation, but it is up to you how (or if) you want to interpret anything on this list.
- Study skills. I think study skills should be taught to everyone in college because learning to study helps the prospective student learn information, retain knowledge, and advance the skills they are acquiring. If a student learns these skills, then there is the possibility of an increased chance to learn the topic taught in class in a more enhanced state of mind.
- Concentration. Concentration is important because much of life and especially our life and time in college is about staying focused on our studies or the topic which is being taught. One must learn to be disciplined in art of concentration. There are so many distractions we must bypass in the classroom, not to mention how easily we many times allow our minds to drift aimlessly.
- Prioritization. Without information and tasks that must be accomplished being placed in a form of order, we will not be as efficient in completing the projects and learning placed before us. If we are able to take the chaos and give it order, we should more efficiently complete our assignments. Then in the unfortunate possibility of not allowing enough time to complete all the assigned work, the least harmful tasks will be the ones omitted.
- Prospective Thinking. By this I mean to think beyond "moment thinking" ; to look at the whole picture of life, education and instances as it relates to the larger picture in our lives and how the ripple effects of impulse reactions and choices will possibly impact our lives and futures as well as those in contact with our circumstances.
- Financial Management and Money Related Strategy. I believe every college and university student should be REQIURED to take a course demonstrating and teaching how to best handle debt loads (when it is necessary to go into debt) and what the variance is when we allow ourselves to stay in debt verses making the priority to as quickly as possible get out of debt. How to invest wisely our available resources to our future benefits even though it may seem we do not have flexibility.
- Healthy Relationships. To help developing adults to identify subtle negative traits and habits within friends, relatives and acquaintances that could lead to the demise of their flourishing futures. Healthy, positive relationships do not require you to sacrifice your opportunities or encourage you to do immature things to fit someone else's ideals.
- Stress Management. When much is given, much is stressful. There is need for college students to learn coping skills and distressing techniques so that they do not suffer burnout or the ongoing panic attacks which accompany stress.
- Food For Thought. Much is known about what nutrition is utilized by they brain as well as body for optimum learning and endurance of our immune systems. When coping with stress and long hours of study, an enormous difference is visible by the type of diet one partakes of.
- Proper Parenting Skills. Many might want to argue about this, but a peek at society and everyone should agree there is need for those who claim the title of parent to do the work and prove they deserve a title which should be held in higher esteem. Whether or not you actually become a parent is your choice, but once you have become one, do the work, you may begin to feel that your progeny is the payoff in all of our futures.
- You Are What You Sleep. There are so many studies proving the benefits of sleep and the negative effects of lack of sleep or poor sleep patterns, that perhaps devoting a course on this filled with some "sleep experiments" would emphasize the importance of good sleep habits for a students productivity, health and mental sharpness as well as longevity of life.
- Label Reading. There are so many chemicals and additives added to our foods, I believe we should have an in depth study of exactly what these specific additives and chemicals are, why they are added to our foods and what the possible positive and negative effects and implications of these additives are. This course should have the classification of a science credit since you would be learning what the chemical makeup and effects are and interactions of these ingredients with each other and with medications many in society take. Labels are many times purposefully worded to mislead our understanding. We need to learn when a label says wheat it most likely is not absolutely whole wheat and that fat free does not mean better nutritionally or something labeled 100% fruit juice may actually have a few other things in it, in some cases, when allowed.
- Life Outside. Between classes and work and meeting friends to hang out, why are so few people spending abundant time outside anymore? We may like the fresh unpolluted air and the energy of nature. There is sometimes less pollution outdoors than in our buildings and homes. There is relevance in moving greater distances than what is between the couch for TV and where your computer is. Why should we sign up for fitness classes that are indoors? We should consider having fitness instruction which move us outside to feel the elements and make us breathe the fresh air outdoors.
- Ancient American Penmanship. I find great distress in the fact that younger people are not taught the ART of cursive anymore. My adult children cannot "sign their names". Is not your signature important?.. Is not your signature supposed to be as unique as each person is individually? Way back when I was in junior high, they even taught us calligraphy. What a great loss is true penmanship. What will happen to society if the power were to go out and we were forced to write manually again.
- Correct English Language. We have been inundated with poor language skills, all of America. Not "my bad"; no more "dank." College students should speak intelligently. That is what is expected of college minds. When you go to church, you speak "church". When you go to college, you are there to become more INTELLIGENT. That should be reflected in intelligent, articulate language.
- Independent Living Skills. College students need to learn to live independently,detaching from their parents pocket books, learning to actually wash their own laundry (if all of the parents' attempts have met with resistance and failure thus far) and how to address problems on their own (i.e. time for an oil change or you have a flat tire. What do you DO?). Allowing dirty clothing to accumulate until there is not a clean pair of jeans is not the option. Running home for a meal is no longer available. You must become independent.
- Successful Work Skills and Etiquette. Some college students might like to rely on their people skills which were acceptable in high school but are no longer appropriate for a working environment or for interaction with clients or patrons of a business.
So, that was a list of some ideas that ran through my mind. Thoughts on college, on education, and learning are sometimes what this blog is about!