Thursday, June 13, 2013

Our education system is destroying creativity - poll result and moderator's report card

What kind of creative ways can I find to make my opinion public? I thought of a video or maybe just a drawing, something that would be a diagram of the main ideas that were raised in this debate, putting them into groups, linking each argument to its rebuttals… But I was asked for something academic and use words. So here you are. [Continued below the fold…]


Before congratulating one side, I’d like to thank both of them. I appreciated the numerous examples you quoted and gave and the use of the comments to point out the weaknesses of your opponent’s speeches. 

It’s a pity that the proposition team forgot to define the motion. Actually, it would have been the best way for them to capture what creativity is. Then, the opposition couldn’t have described it as they wished which; according to their speeches was both “the qualitative impetus […] behind any given act of creation” and the process of producing something that is both original and worthwhile”. Therefore the debate was not focusing only on the ability to make something new come out of your mind but also on the ways and methods to go from an idea to reality. 

The proposing side considers creativity as a gift of nature to every human. The opposition disagreed with this in their first speech. Probably convinced by their opponent’s speech, they defended that it was actually a “feature”, and even a “primitive” one.  This was not the only paradoxical position in this debate. The proposition seemed to center the debate on the French system before reminding us that they were actually talking about “all modern countries”, which is a bit larger than France, sorry for the French. 

Nevertheless, these points were not the center of the debate which was of course made of arguments. The proposition highlighted that our system is centered on sciences and stigmatizes mistakes. By not offering various enough fields, it fails to breed creativity. If you read between the lines, this argument requires that creativity bear from a rich background in terms of quantity. This is very interesting with regard to the opposition’s idea concerning a field of excellence. There is a contradiction between having to be an expert in your field to be creative or having some knowledge in a large amount of fields. The proposition considers that the fear of failure and the social pressure don’t push students to be creative. The opposition answered this question. Concerning mistakes, I think that a difference should have been made between learning time and working time: it was a bit too strong to give the example of factories of Bangladesh (and the problem here is probably security and safety more than creativity)

One part of the debate concerned the French education system. All debaters agreed on the fact that more than content, it is the way in which education is delivered that matters. For the proposition, it is a force-feeding system, in which students are supposed to absorb knowledge rather than think by themselves. This industrial system even prevents them from having personal opinions! It’s a sensible position but it’s unfortunate that they don’t really show the way it abolishes creativity. Thanks to this lack of accuracy, the opposition had the opportunity to answer this argument. They argued that the aim of schools is to teach rigor and methods in order to learn to construct thoughts and thereby creativity and its results. The road may be long but it’s worth it! Schools and education are made to give students tools. Challenging their minds frees their creativity. 

In a quick view, as I was reading this debate I really felt like one side was stronger than the other, feeding the debate with new perspectives during the rebuttal. Then I analyzed it. Who won this debate? The polls vow for the opposition, do I follow them? Read the underlined bold letters to find the answer! This is my creative touch.

Thank you all, proposition, opposition and guest speaker, some of your arguments were very… creative.


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