Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Personal Pique

I'm sure that Yale and similar institutions are mostly filled with bright students, and that they can get a good education there, but they also seem to be damn good at inculcating asshole-ness. Here is the normally bright and frequently perceptive Matt Yglesias:

A summer intern who's just finished up her third year at Yale doesn't have any kind of particular credentials, but we know that she probably has very good SAT scores and sounds like an exceedingly normal person. A young woman who got a 1600 on her SATs and has been spending the past three years working at 7-11 and watching Open Yale Courses videos sounds like a huge weirdo.

This screams pretentious asshole on so many levels it overflows my outrage buffers.

I'm not sure how good Yale's weirdo filters are, but their wealth and privilege filters are very effective - and that's what Yglesias is really talking about. I doubt that many people learn much from Open Yale, which appears to be just a certain amount of pablum dispersed with little thought and no credentials, but edX and Coursera are turning out real courses and producing real learning.