Do we really need so many core classes?

Well, the night before last I did something I thought was damn near impossible for me.  I passed my final math class! It took two tutors and five weeks of nightly frustration but I passed with a B-. Yes this is my first B, but really, I am not complaining, I am celebrating. I passed a college math class that included Sets, Venn diagrams, advanced algebra and geometry.  During these last five weeks I kept thinking “is this truly necessary for a humanities degree?

Over the last few years the powers that be have been looking at higher education, wondering if it really should take four years to earn a degree.  Looking at the rising cost of tuition, academics are questioning if students need so many core classes. Can students receive a well rounded education with fewer requirements?

Now that I am in my last semester, I am looking back on my education. With so many classes under my belt, have they all had an impact? Could I have done with less? Surprisingly, the answer is no. All of my classes have been a benefit in one way or another.

My British boyfriend and I were talking about this not too long ago. He has two math degrees but because they are from England, they don’t count in America. He is going for an AA degree in computing, just to have it on his resume.  He is frustrated with all the core humanities he is required to take.  “What do these have to do with IT and computing” he asked. “It is not like someone is going to ask me ‘so what’s up with that Hamlet dude?’ while working on their computer”. I laughed and said,” well I guess it may come up if a woman wants to flirt with you”.  See, this is how we met and started dating. He was fixing my computer at work, and I, wanting to hear his accent, started talking to him.  Knowing English history, I asked him where he was from. One thing led to another and we started chatting about history, then science. He thought I was hot for having an interest in science and I thought he was hot for being English and liking science. Had it not been for my science classes we would not have clicked as quickly as we did.

My education has allowed me to talk to people about a variety of subjects. It has allowed me to have a better understanding of politics, advertizing, communication, science and of course literature.  Some say knowledge is power, but I say knowledge is empowering, as it has given me self confidence and the ability to live a little wiser and a little better. Yes, some of my classes were challenging, but isn’t that life?

Author: sarij

I'm a writer, lifelong bibliophile ,and researcher. I hold a Bachelors in Humanities & History and a Master's in Humanities. When I'm not reading or talking about Shakespeare or history, you can usually find me in the garden discussing science or politics with my cat.

3 thoughts on “Do we really need so many core classes?”

  1. What a great way to look at it Sari! I’m going to have to have you remind me of this when I call to complain about my health centered classes in the future!

    And again, I’m ever so proud of you!


  2. Sarijj, as I continue to read your blog, well, quite honestly, you rock. As a single mother, my career path was in the service industry. I was a server/waitress @ times supervisor, and in most cases made trainer. I was outstanding @ what I did. I wanted a day job, w/benefits & to offer my children a better life than I had. College of course was the key to unlock the doors to a new career. Feeling 25 haha, was too old for a 4 yr college and lack of self confidence I would be a accepted, I chose a 2 yr ‘technical college’. My education was a good one, I won awards, aced all but one class. But, my love of learning, just for knowledge sake, wasn’t satiated. I missed the electives of sciences, languages, art history,additional history classes! I agree w/ you- a variety of knowledge makes a person more aware, a ‘fluff’ class can ignite a passion a person may not even be aware they have or a talent. Sadly, in 1990, most of my credits were not transferable to most universities. So, over the yrs, continuing adult education classes that seemed interesting. No credits to build towards a BA or swoon…MA. I think, that they should strengthen the K-12 curriculum ~crazy me~Latin in public HS! Even, foreign languages beginning in 1st grade! Radical thoughts, must be the damage to my myelin that makes me crazy! TY again


    1. I am blushing, not sure if I think I rock. I just found myself at the age of 41 to be going through a string of low paying unfilling jobs. By the way, I admire good waitresses. My dad owned a resort, we had two restaurants. I tried to be a waitress, but people are mean to food servers! I could not take it.

      Sorry to hear your credits (even some) were not transferable. That is not right. When I went back to school in my 40’s I had to start all over again too. This is why it has taken me so long to get that coveted BA (of course my luck the economy has tanked and it may not do me a lot of good). I had always told my son he was going to college, so I decide to walk the walk. I did not date for 6 years, as my focus became school and my son. I do not regret it at all. I encourage everyone to go back, no matter what age you start. It is a great self-esteem builder.

      I would love to learn Latin! Do you know, there are maybe two Latin courses in the US now? In England it is required during grammar school as is another foreign language. My British boyfriend knows Latin and German all because he took the classes when he was young. I am struggling to learn German now, and am amazed by what he remembers. Hell, I am lucky to remember things from last week! Love your thoughts, keep em’ coming!

      Sari Karmageddon:It’s when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, and then the Earth explodes and it’s a serious bummer.


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