Knowledge and its Enemies: Towards a New Case for Higher Learning, Student Edition

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The law that replaced No Child Left Behind—the Every Student Succeeds Act, enacted in —has eased the consequences but has hardly weakened the emphasis on testing. Since , the curriculum in many elementary schools has narrowed to little more than a steady diet of reading and math. And when test scores fail to rise after third grade—as they often do, especially in high-poverty schools—subjects like history and science may continue to be relegated to the far back burner through middle school.

To some extent, it does make sense to focus on reading skills in the early years. One component of reading is, like math, primarily a set of skills: the part that involves decoding, or making connections between sounds and the letters that represent them. But educators have also treated the other component of reading—comprehension—as a set of skills, when in fact it depends primarily on what readers already know.

What inferences can you make? Rarely do the topics connect: Students might read a book about bridges one day, zebras the next, and clouds the day after that. One of those cognitive scientists spoke on the Tuesday panel: Daniel Willingham, a psychology professor at the University of Virginia who writes about the science behind reading comprehension.

If they put all the information in, their writing would be tedious. Students from less educated families are usually the ones who are most handicapped by gaps in knowledge. Another panelist—Ian Rowe, who heads a network of charter schools serving low-income students in New York—provided a real-life example during his remarks. The unfamiliar word made it hard for her to understand the passage. Written assignments must always indicate sources used, and a bibliography must always be included. It is important that you learn to adhere to the guidelines already at the start of your studies.

Then, once you start working on your thesis, following the right practices should no longer be an issue. The essay can be subjective, in which case the writer expresses his or her own thoughts on the topic: e. If the writer chooses an investigative approach, the essay will be akin to a scientific article. Such an essay clearly expresses the underlying idea, and also includes detailed reference to sources. Exam answers are often in essay format. In such cases, you are expected to provide the relevant information and usually also your own thoughts on the matter.

As implicit in the name, a memorandum is compiled to support your memory, for example after a meeting or brainstorming session.

The Knowledge Workers’ Strike

If a meeting is involved, the memorandum should shortly list what was agreed, and who is responsible for what and when. You will need to compile memorandums if you are active in the student unions. You can organise your diary chronologically or by topic, for example. You can organise your portfolio by courses taken or by topic, for example. The summary can be based on an oral or written presentation, and itself can also be oral or written. You can present your own point of view in a summary. If you do this, you must nevertheless indicate what your opinion is and what you have gathered from other sources.

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The abstract can be written either informatively or to raise the reader's interest in the text proper. Nevertheless, the abstract should give a good general picture of the content of the text. The abstract is placed in the beginning of your thesis and other larger reports. The report can also be a review written at regular intervals, for example a weekly report or monthly report.


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In addition, the report can provide information on how to develop operations, be used as a basis for decision making, or, more generally, to provide information on a given topic. At Haaga-Helia, you are usually required to write a report whenever you participate in a project.


  1. The Enemy Within – why the narrative about universities and students went so wrong.
  2. You are here.
  3. God in the Age of Science?: A Critique of Religious Reason.
  4. The Education Deficit.
  5. You are here.
  6. For more info on written reports, please check the guidelines Student's extranet. In your future job it is important that you can express yourself well, i. You will have the chance to orally present your written work many times during your studies, providing you with good practice on your presentation skills. Oral presentations communicate information, experiences, opinions and thoughts — and are an integral part of your studies.

    Remember that most people are nervous when giving presentations even though they might not show this on the outside. Remember also to listen to the presentations of others with proper respect. If you find that giving oral presentations is especially hard for you, please discuss the matter with the academic advisor. Use clearly visible colours and font size min size A larger auditorium requires an even larger font.

    Rise interest of the audience by using pictures. Use videos only if needed. Use at most 20 slides per hour. Don't forget your USB flash drive to the class room. Use different colours to separate topics.

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    You can ask more from the IT HelpDesk. Find more AV instructions here. Studying at Haaga-Helia, too, involves a lot of group projects and other assignments. Successful cooperation has many prerequisites, for example trust among participants, openness and listening to others, as well as taking into account other group members. Moreover successful group work requires not only that the group reaches its information objectives, but also that it is successful in its decision making, problem solving, interaction and management. It cannot be taken for granted, however, that everyone has the proper cooperation skills.

    It is very common that problem situations arise. In this regard, it is important that group members learn to solve their problems in a constructive manner. Please make an active effort to develop these skills during your studies.

    Have your say

    Contact hours play an important role in your studies. For example, they allow you to gain a deeper understanding of the course textbooks and the opportunity to engage in group work and discussions with other students. Teachers, too, do a lot of things in class. For example, they present new perspectives and research findings, teach argumentation skills, discuss the topics studied in more detail, as well as tell about their own experiences.

    Indeed, the classroom is an excellent place for students to sharpen up their thinking, and active participation ensures the best results. Successful teaching is successful interaction between the teacher and students. It is important that you attend class as much as possible! Remember also that many courses have a minimum attendance requirement, which you will be informed about at the start of the course. Haaga-Helia offers many online study opportunities. Many courses are completed either wholly or partly over the net.

    The exam might be completed over the net or during a separate exam occasion. Moodle virtual learning environment is mainly being used in online courses at Haaga-Helia, but also other digital environments are utilized. Students get guidance for these at the start of their studies. Remember, however, that you need to have basic computer skills and access to an Internet connection to complete such courses. Some systems require a headset with microphone and web camera not compulsory. If any special software is needed for an online course, notification of this will be given in the course description.