Re: Country With the World's Most Successful Education System

Discussion in 'Education' started by 777, Dec 12, 2009.

  1. 777
    Offline

    777 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2004
    Messages:
    52
    Thanks Received:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Ratings:
    +8
    From personal experience I can say that Finnish education is absolutely top of the line.
    I've had the chance to experience both US and Finnish educational systems.
    I was born and raised in Finland until age 19 and went to public schools there.
    I have a high school diploma from Finland and bachelor's degree from USA.

    What really sets the Finnish system apart from USA?

    High school in Finland was much harder than any college class I have ever taken in the USA. Having a 4.0 grade point average in high school was an impossible goal to achieve. Here I was able to graduate from college summa cum laude with a GPA of 3.97 - and it was not too difficult. Now I'm studying for master's degree.

    At college I far outperformed most American-born students in just about any academic subject. How can that be? English is not even my native language.

    What I have observed is that in the USA students feel entitled to good grades without really doing the work. In Finland, we had no mercy grades. We got the grade we truly deserved. Period.

    Excellent work ethic and diligence are lacking among many students in the United States and laziness is rampant in classrooms.

    Students lack motivation to excel and are content being just average (Horrifying thought to even think of!). In Finland, we are expected to perform to the best of our ability regardless of outcome.

    In Finnish high schools the brainiest students are really admired. In the USA, geeks are made fun of (not always, of course).

    In Finland, teaching is truly a very respected profession. I surely would love to be a teacher in Finland but truthfully, I'm not smart enough to be accepted to college there, not even to study English in the University of Finland (already tried).

    Overall, I think it is not that Finns are any smarter than Americans. It is the attitude about school that is so very different between the two countries. As long as Americans fail to respect and love education, they will continue finding themselves struggling academically.
     
    • Thank You! Thank You! x 1
  2. code1211
    Offline

    code1211 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Messages:
    5,999
    Thanks Received:
    845
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Ratings:
    +845


    From my extremely limited contact with Foreign nationals, I would have to agree. Education is the only thing in this country from which almost everyone strives to receive less than we pay for. The exposure to classical knowledge and philosophy along with rigorous science and math has been supplanted here by the feel good social sciences.

    It's more important to understand why single sex marriage is good than to understand why Iago was a pain the pitute. In fact the whole Othello thingy is probably too touchy to study in our scholls. A little too much race in this. Not PC, doncha know.

    Luckily for Americans, the whole world is now bowing to considerations outside disciplines to find the answer that is popular as opposed to the one that is right. Therefore, the Big 0 gets a peace prize for his work performed as a community organizer in Chicago. Still confused on that. The Norwegians conferred this honor and presumably, they have a rigorous education system like the Finns.

    If the rest of the world gets as stupid as us, we will soon be as smart as them.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2009
  3. Diuretic
    Offline

    Diuretic Permanently confused

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2006
    Messages:
    12,653
    Thanks Received:
    1,397
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    South Australia est 1836
    Ratings:
    +1,397
    But - the US has some of the best universities in the world. And it had (historically) and has some of the finest theoreticians in education in the world. I know that's slightly off point because the topic appears to be about what I would call primary and secondary school education, but what the hell. If there is a deficiency in those areas then it would appear to be something to do with current policy. I suppose the question is, when did it start to go wrong (assuming it has)?
     
  4. PoliticalChic
    Online

    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Messages:
    55,717
    Thanks Received:
    15,607
    Trophy Points:
    2,190
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Ratings:
    +24,850
    Excellent and informative post, especially the last paragraph.

    As I recall, the original threat re: Finnish schools was partly a poke in the eye to those of us who feel that it is the political overlay that is holding back the schools in the US.

    But what ever the case, unless the US gets more serious about learning, we will never again be in the vanguard.
     
  5. PoliticalChic
    Online

    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Messages:
    55,717
    Thanks Received:
    15,607
    Trophy Points:
    2,190
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Ratings:
    +24,850
    Right on, as far as higher education.

    I believe that the US has some 38 or so of the top 40 in the world.

    But as far as the future, I just heard that some 75% of student admitted into NY colleges and universites require remedial courses in math or english.

    Nationwide, over one million incoming college students require remedial courses. The cost is $2.5 billion to teach those kids what our billions in tax dollars should have taught them already! Diploma to Nowhere? | Partnership for Learning

    Why are there 32 million Americans who can’t read or write? Illiteracy - Major U.S. Problem

    National Geographic Poll: 63% of 18 to 24 yr olds couldn’t locate Iraq on a map, 70% couldn’t find Iran or Israel, and 90% Afghanistan. And 50% couldn’t find New York State. 2006 National Geographic Roper

    School, it seems, is for the teachers, not the kids.
     
  6. Oddball
    Offline

    Oddball BANNED Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Messages:
    41,428
    Thanks Received:
    8,397
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Drinking wine, eating cheese, catching rays
    Ratings:
    +8,409
    One thing the American edumacation system seems to excel at is killing the natural love of learning kids have.
     
  7. chanel
    Offline

    chanel Silver Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2009
    Messages:
    12,130
    Thanks Received:
    2,746
    Trophy Points:
    98
    Location:
    People's Republic of NJ
    Ratings:
    +2,749
    Social promotion, self esteem, rewarding bad behavior, learning disabilities caused by drug addicted parents, apathy and hostility toward public education, etc. I see it every day. AP classes getting cut in favor of "alternative programs" for the incorrigibles. The system is broken but only the PUBLIC can demand and institute reform. The teachers are powerless.
     
  8. Oddball
    Offline

    Oddball BANNED Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Messages:
    41,428
    Thanks Received:
    8,397
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Drinking wine, eating cheese, catching rays
    Ratings:
    +8,409
    All of that and the model whereby the class is regularly taught down to the lowest performing students.

    Could it be that a portion of the "ADHD" cases are bright kids who are bored out of their socks?
     
  9. Diuretic
    Offline

    Diuretic Permanently confused

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2006
    Messages:
    12,653
    Thanks Received:
    1,397
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    South Australia est 1836
    Ratings:
    +1,397
    I have to say that as far as remedial classes go it's the same situation here in Australia. I'm reluctant to lay the blame at anyone's feet because the reasons must surely be more complex than I know. It's tempting for me, as a baby boomer, to bang on about how I was taught English grammar at school (painfully) and suggest it's how it should have been taught recently and now (why would I really need to know what a gerund is anyway?). I do know that here - and I would think in other parts of the English-speaking world that there is a continuing debate over how children should be taught about their language. But remedial classes for uni students is a big worry.
     
  10. Diuretic
    Offline

    Diuretic Permanently confused

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2006
    Messages:
    12,653
    Thanks Received:
    1,397
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    South Australia est 1836
    Ratings:
    +1,397
    chanel and Dude's comments - these point to a systemic failure (I know, such a revelation by me :lol:) which appears to be on other shores as well. Do we expect too much from schools?

    Shouldn't we ask for an education and some socialisation of children but not demand schools be responsible for bringing up children?

    Some schools here have breakfast programmes - that might seem unsurprising to some, but my state, for the most part, doesn't have major areas of privation. It does have some pockets of poverty but I think some parents just don't give a toss about their children and they expect the school to do the parenting for them.

    Can we expect schools to do all this and then flog them mercilessly when they apparently fail?

    Also I'm interested in current theories of how children learn, I'm not informed at all in that area beyond some background information. I wonder if that's a problem as well?
     

Share This Page