Tag Archives: Education

Thought Provoking Post::Stumbling and Mumbling: The state and equality

Sam Seaborn
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I’m a big West Wing Fan, and in someways it has shaped how I view things. I still remember a scene where Sam Seaborn‘s  declarations, I pay a lot of taxes and I love it! I may have an unhealthy regard for my abilities but I have no doubt that in the crucial ways I am me because i was fortunated enough to be born to my parents. I was lucky, this was no fault/act of mine. Taxation is a transfer, I love paying taxes, just hope there was more ways to ensure that the transfer is not a transfer to the swiss bank acounts of government officials! .read the whole thing!

But of course, these are only a part of the link between the state and inequality. Tawneyite socialists claim that spending on (say) health and education are forces for equality.

But are they? Julian Le Grand famously argued in a book in 1982 that the rich actually got more than the poor from these services – a claim supported more recently by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

In the case of healthcare, the claim is also supported by this paper (pdf). One reason for this is that the poor under-estimate their ill-health and so are less likely to make claims on the health system. Another reason is that the rich live longer (pdf) than the poor, and the bulk of health spending on most individuals comes late in life.

via Stumbling and Mumbling: The state and equality.

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rePost: Thank You Friends:Well – What Are Friends For? A Longer Life – NYTimes.com

“People with stronger friendship networks feel like there is someone they can turn to,” said Karen A. Roberto, director of the center for gerontology at Virginia Tech. “Friendship is an undervalued resource. The consistent message of these studies is that friends make your life better.”

via Well – What Are Friends For? A Longer Life – NYTimes.com.

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rePost:Please Send This To All My Teachers In College hehehe:Stumbling and Mumbling: In praise of dumbing down

remember sir Ken Robinsons TED talk here, of how schools kill creativity, he says something there like “college produces college professors”, I love my professors but sometimes feel this sentiment. same with the board exams, the EE board exams produces exam takers/passers not electrical engineers. red the half of the post i didnt grab

In praise of dumbing down

Complaints about “dumbing down” have become a cliché. However, in narrow technical terms, the dumbing down of exams could be a good thing, as this recent paper explains.

The intuition is simple. Exams can only measure a subset of the skills required for most jobs. If you set tough exams, people with good skills which the exam doesn’t test will either fail or not even enter. The result is that employers who look for exam grades plus other skills will not get a pool of able candidates.

In such cases, the dumbing down of exams can help. They’ll allow those people with good but non-tested skills to now acquire credentials as well. And as these people can now get jobs ahead of good exam-passers with poor other skills, so labour productivity might improve. This would happen if the decline in average tested skills is small, relative to the improvement in average non-tested skills of the new exam-passers, or if non-tested skills are very important for job success.

It’s possible, therefore, that dumbing down can be good for the economy.

So much for theory, what of practice?

via Stumbling and Mumbling: In praise of dumbing down.

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eLink8:Great Talk About: The Passion and Perseverance Behind a Start-up

got this from Hacker News

It’s a talk a Stanford dropout gave, I really enjoyed it, I just didn’t relish the wierd looks I got from my officemates whenever I laughed out loud!

the talk is here:

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rePost: : Stumbling and Mumbling: Returns to good universities

Median household income and GDP per capita lev...
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I graduated from UP (University of the Philippines). In the Philippines there is really no comparison with other universities here in my country (although a few friends would definitely disagree, this is my blog so bugger off).  I’d have to say that one of the major reasons that UP is different is the diversity you have when your tuition fee is worth not even half a Play Station Portable and only a handful of your science programs are not the centers of excellence of your country(Electrical Engineering program in UP is the center of excellence for EE in Phils., It’s really disheartening that a few departments have the swagger but not the chops to be the best at least in the Here and be respected elsewhere). from my own experiences a UP diploma is good enough for a middle to upper middle income household if you start from scratch, and in a lot of ways helps open doors for you. I’ve always wondered about the people who refuse to study what they really want to study in lieu of studying something because that is the course that they got into in UP. It’s probably because of this, I think that either the median income of most professions in the Philippines really fall within a narrow field and this makes where you graduate almost as important as what was your course when you graduate. Well what do I know??

Returns to good universities

New research confirms what we’ve long suspected but not quantified – that it does matter what university you attend.

This paper shows that there are significant differences in graduate earnings, depending upon the quality of university. For example, if a university has an RAE score one standard deviation above-average, its graduates earn, on average, 4% more than the average graduate. And a graduate of a top quartile university earns 10-16% more (depending on which measure of quality is used*) than a graduate of a bottom quartile institution.

These differences control for students’ A level scores and other things, and so try to correct for the fact that better universities attract better applicants.

There seems to have been a rise in these returns over time, which suggests that as university numbers have expanded, so too has the premium upon attending a better one.

via Stumbling and Mumbling: Returns to good universities.

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What’s Playing: The Space Between by Dave Matthews Band

The Dave Matthews Band at Vodafone Arena, Melb...
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You cannot quit me so quickly
There’s no hope in you for me
No corner you could squeeze me
But I got all the time for you, love

The Space Between
The tears we cry
Is the laughter keeps us coming back for more
The Space Between
The wicked lies we tell
And hope to keep safe from the pain

But will I hold you again?
These fickle, fuddled words confuse me
Like ‘Will it rain today?’
Waste the hours with talking, talking
These twisted games we’re playing

We’re strange allies
With warring hearts
What wild-eyed beast you be
The Space Between
The wicked lies we tell
And hope to keep safe from the pain

Will I hold you again?
Will I hold…

Look at us spinning out in
The madness of a roller coaster
You know you went off like a devil
In a church in the middle of a crowded room
All we can do, my love
Is hope we don’t take this ship down

The Space Between
Where you’re smiling high
Is where you’ll find me if I get to go
The Space Between
The bullets in our firefight
Is where I’ll be hiding, waiting for you
The rain that falls
Splash in your heart
Ran like sadness down the window into…
The Space Between
Our wicked lies
Is where we hope to keep safe from pain

Take my hand
‘Cause we’re walking out of here
Oh, right out of here
Love is all we need here

The Space Between
What’s wrong and right
Is where you’ll find me hiding, waiting for you
The Space Between
Your heart and mine
Is the space we’ll fill with time
The Space Between…

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rePost:Signalling ang The Kindle:Marginal Revolution: Tom Foster on the Kindle

Image representing Amazon Kindle as depicted i...
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This makes me wonder what is far stronger the need to signal what you are reading or the ability to hide what you are reading?? See, I’ve read a few books that I’d call my guilty indulgences, books I wouldn’t read in public or without their covers covered. And yes if you look at my desk I have a couple of these books, and with the ability to hide them effectively they would comprise a larger percentage of the books I own.

I wonder if Kindle advocates are underestimating how important it is for people to show those around them not just that they like to read, but also what they like to read?

via Marginal Revolution: Tom Foster on the Kindle.

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