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Generation text: What does our future hold - Research Paper Example

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Name: University: Course: Tutor: Date: Simon Benlow’s “‘Have it Your Way’ Consumerism Invades Education” examines the effects and the correlation of consumerist attitudes both on the part of the students and of the educational institutions. The article discusses how our understanding of these concepts has degraded the values that come out of real education…
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Generation text: What does our future hold
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Download file to see previous pages the students, Benlow goes on to write how customers and students are very different. Essentially, our inherent conceptions of what customers are and how they should be treated does not apply to education. The classification of students as customers undermined the very foundation of the scholarly conduct that must come out of his education. The article presents four characteristics identified with consumerism and how this translates to the student’s discernment that he is a customer in relation to his education. First, the customer is always right. This belief is perhaps the most common impression that is inculcated to us as customers. The need of business establishments to satisfy our needs and to ensure our utmost comfort and answer for any inconveniences gives the sense of power to the consumer, “to keep the customers happy, to keep them from complaining, and most importantly, to keep them coming back” (Benlow 130). Second, the Burger King’s slogan “have it your way” suggests that the establishment will go out of its way to satisfy the whims of its customers. This enables the customers to develop an attitude that he should have the control in his overall experience. Third, is what the author calls the “meal deal bargain.” Where fast food chains have developed complete meals that allow the purchaser to simply choose a number and this is prevalent not only in the food industry but also in other marketing strategies of brands. Finally, passivity is another attitude encouraged by consumerism that should not apply to education. “We are prompted in a variety of ways not to be agents of our own making. Our needs and desires are met by the work of others” (Benlow 130). Benlow establishes that adopting the same attitudes as consumers while inside the educational institution creates a dilemma as the two are essentially repellant of each other. The sense that people develop out of the notions that consumerism allows them to form are then translated to how they see education as a form of commodity. The author may deem this a negative connotation but it is coming out of a valid sentiment. Evidently, this bears truth in tertiary education as the cost of procuring university education is extremely exorbitant taking a toll on their and their family’s financial resources. A number of students graduate with thousands of dollars in debt on student loans and similar obligations. They pay and expect to get results immediately. However, the problem lies in that the students expect to get their money’s worth without having to do much on their part while on the premises of the academic institutions. It has become quite difficult to understand how quality education is achieved. There are no set boundaries as to how much a teacher can do and the equivalent effort the student must exert. Benlow, on his part, has not clearly indicated what this means except for relating that the most he got out of his education was when professors demanded highly of his students. This is not entirely a foolproof way to determine that quality education is achieved nor is it effective to all kinds of students without qualification. Consequently, it must be kept in mind that a professor or educator is only a catalyst of the knowledge that one wishes to acquire. In the 1990s, a wave of students made the news in their concerted effort to raise ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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