TED Conversations

Nekruz Ismoilov

President & CEO, NeksNuts, Inc.


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How do you think we can motivate young people to perceived and purposeful studying?

On the one hand, the flow of information nowadays is incredibly huge: you can choke on the TV programs, websites, newspapers and books. However, the most of these information flows are "yellow", useless and even worse - destructive. Tajikistan is a small country in Central Asia with a population of 7,000,000 people (2011).

Youth in Tajikistan in the 21st century has not enough useful and necessary information for the successful start in the life. After finishing a high school, most young people do not know what they can do. They have no idea what their lives devote to. At the same time the top for the most of the teenagers is to find a job in Russia. Making money in Russia became the main goal in youth’s and adults’ life. Children have no longer an enthusiasm to study at school and students remain at the Universities only "for parents".

- How do you think we can motivate young people to perceived and purposeful studying?
- How to start their internal "engine" for the acceleration to a successful life?
- What methods would be offered the Ministry of Education by you to implement into the system of education?

  • M D

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    Jun 13 2012: We need to transmit the idea that education is not just to make you more knowledgable and give you a memory bank of information and skills that leed to a career/money; but that through the use of education you beome a more intelligent person, a deeper thinker, better able to express yourself, better able to understand all phenomena. We need to see education as being able to grow the mind, rather than fill it with data, quotations and formulae. We should seek to become authors, not books.
    • Jun 24 2012: I fully agree with you and think that the current crisis shows us that we have to change our educationsystem and that everything has become interconnected. We cant make a move in one country without effecting the results on the other side of this planet.
      So I think that education has to develop in a way that the children of today become global citizens that feel responsibilty for eachother.
      This will awaken them to the laws of interdependency and able them to achieve new skills to handle with the global problems we are facing today.

      We have to educate a desire to stop global injustice and take responcibility to create a harmonious,sustainble,and peacefull life.
      Essential is the dialog between the cultures and find out what connects us instead what seperates us.
      When we see eachother as a large family we will treat eachother in that way and correct others if they are making actions wich not contribute to the whole of society.
      Living together requires social skills and not only insert data and tools how to make a lot of money on behalf of other people and think we have to educate this.
      We have to look as well on the influence of the media and ask the children how they percieve the world and what their interests are.
      Think conversation should be the main tool to educate the children of tomorrow.
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    Jun 13 2012: I think the way in which the system of education has been build isn't suitable for the quick-paced society we live in today. The education movement came with the enlightenment and we are nowhere near where we were at that time. We have distractions coming at us from all sides, all the time. Who can blame kids who can't study? They have to learn self-control and multi-tasking at a whole new level. I think it's important to further a child on whatever potential they have. Intelligence comes in many different forms, whether it's creative or logical, everyone is different and their strengths should be encouraged and nurtured. I think once we re-imagine what it means to have an education and the opportunities it offers to an individual, that's when the world can move forward and the true value of education can be measured for what it should be: for everyone.
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      Jun 25 2012: Hmmmm but I thought there had been an educational revolution of sorts in England a while back? I often use your system as a model that works as do many educators here who are trying to reform our system, but are you saying that technology has made it antiquated or???

      I agree that students (and adults) need to learn/have more self-control/self-discipline, but I do not agree with multitasking per se, as studies have proven (and I as a teacher have seen), that this is not really effective to truly learn, remember and understand something.
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        Jun 25 2012: I've only moved to London recently for University, I actually grew up in Argentina where I went to an American international school and the system was pretty different from the one in England. International schools in general are peculiar about the way they teach- also I did the International Baccalaureate which has its even more specific set of guidelines - but I definitely think they need a lot of work, especially on how they chose to further a child and work with them to get them to their full potential. I mean that based on personal experience though, I have noticed that the education in England is very different, specifically with the concept of going to "college" before university and such. I can't comment much because I honestly don't know enough, I'm fully basing this on the international schools I've attended and on what I personally feel rather than what I know as facts.
        Of course, you being a teacher must have a completely different perspective from me! I've had excellent teachers that I feel have helped me understand myself a lot better and have helped me see the strengths as well as weaknesses I have. I believe teachers are the most important figures in changing the education system and I truly believe that they can, they have for me in the past.
  • Jul 8 2012: I think the answer is simple, let them do what they love. I find that too often kids are being forced to do things they have no passion for, everyone has that one (at least) trigger. It's a sad situation when schools and Universities are perceived to kill creativity. Innovation, passion and the room to utilise these have been key for me.
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    Jul 1 2012: I find the two biggest challenges when schooling children, or anybody in grade school, are: 1. Finding a way to teach so that the kids comprehend, understand, learn, and enjoy learning. 2. Finding a way to combat the cultural pitfalls the kids face when trying to learn. The former is hard in itself, because it's difficult to generalize a group of individually thinking beings, regardless of age. While one child may be an auditory learner the other may be a visual learner while another may be a hands-on learner. The only way to reach out to each child is to identify his/her style of learning at an early age, and place him/her in a class designed to target that style of learning. Each class would be learning the same exact material, just in a way best suited to the students in each class. The latter of the two challenges is an even bigger obstacle than the former. My assumption, and it is nothing more than that so take it with a grain of salt, is that the cultural aspect of a child's upbringing plays a huge part in their opinion of school. If growing up, a child's parents never, not once, explain the significance of an education or show any interest for a child's school work, how could a child be expected to see school any differently? In my area, the Asian American students most often excel in school. It's ridiculous to believe that because they are Asian they are intellectually superior. Their IQ may be just as high as a C student that doesn't apply himself. The difference between the two students is cultural upbringing. In my Vietnamese friend's household, B's weren't acceptable. He was pushed to achieve A's. It wasn't requested of him, it was expected. So yes, you can find the perfect way to teach students, but it may not provide the solution you are seeking. Ultimately, you must change the culture of the society the students are brought up in as well. And this, you'll find, is a much greater challenge than the former.
  • Jun 23 2012: The two greatest influences in a child's life will be their peers and their parents.
    Having been raised by rather traditional Chinese parents and schooled in a Western institution, I can see how my values learned from home and from my social network have blended together. In matters of education, several issues have been brought up by others:
    1. In North American schools, the standard education system has not been greatly revised since the early 20th century.
    2. These schools prioritize analytical thought and tend to control the students' learning environment to a large degree.
    3. Teachers are often not respected as much as they should OR a few bad teachers tend to make the rest of the teaching staff seem incompetent, and thus lose respect from their students.
    4. Some children receive little encouragement and/or support for their "natural" talents in certain areas if it is something unconventional. (e.g. My parents would not want me to pursue a career as an artist, as it can be unstable.)
    5. Other children are spoiled too much by their parents and/or peer groups, and don't give themselves the chance to be uncomfortable and pursue something different that may interest them.

    One observation that I believe has an overwhelming consensus of agreement is that CURIOSITY must be tied back together with LEARNING. Active learning is what's missing from these passive education systems. It's a rather complex issue that cannot be solved by looking at one locus. On the bright side, I have seen great teachers inspire students to work harder, dream larger, and believe in greater possibilities for themselves and others. These hidden gems are the ones that breathe life into our dying education system. :)
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    Jun 22 2012: Having a good education is the best life insurance anyone can have - If life kicks you down and you lose your job, status or reputation you will still have your well trained mind to keep you going.
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    Jun 20 2012: It is easy to motivate the young. I believe the problem is the current education systems ablity to kill the natural curiosity and willingness to learn and explore. Our current school system are much more interested in passing a state mandated test to see if the can do a little math and reading. So they get there money next year. Well next there's high school where we repeat the same thing we just spent 9 years repeating to them. We do need to overhaul our education system here in the states. Then we would not have the need to motivate the young people. Now I don't think there's a snowballs chance in hell to motivate a vast majority of todays youth. What's left over just need a little push in the right direction. There's no way to generalize as to what would move them. The only common ground that we al have for motivation is a person that finally some how or another got through and awakened that drive to succed. We as the teachers,leaders, or elders how ever you want to look at it must put forth the effort to try and be the one that gets through to that youngin. We don't need to waste time on those that refuse to be anything a drain on society. There's always a few on the fence and those that just need a pat on the back to keep them moving. The fence riders need a push to see which way they will fall. Most will fall the way they are pushed so those our in our hands. I don't believe we can do any more than that to motivate the young. I also think I have to much common sense to tell any member of goverment or suggest to one how to fix a system they and those before them created
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      Jun 25 2012: Dean, I have been saying that we need to overhaul our educational system for decades as it just is not working. And as far as motivating our youth, I think we do try, but motivation to learn has to be intrinsic for it to really work (is Jack Andraka who discovered a diagnostic test for pancreatic cancer) as well has having parents, teachers, mentors as a SOCIETY to help guide and to model this motivation. In my opinion, we do not value learning nor education (true education) here in America. Just look around and see who is getting the "big bucks": those who can throw, pitch, catch, hit, or dunk a ball; those who can "sing"; those who can act...which in reality, does not help society move forward. Then add the apathy of students that seems to be much more prevalent than it was previously, and we have even bigger future problems.

      I was always amazed at my foreign exchange students and their drive to excel and for no credit (although I will admit that lately, their drive has diminished, too depending upon what country they are from), and I will never forget a German student I had a few years ago who continually got A's, and when I asked if I could tell the class that she had the top GPA in my class and wasn't even getting credit for it, the student in front of her turned around and asked her WHY she was even working. Her simple response was: TO learn. Imagine that. :-)
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    Jun 12 2012: Malaysia once had the same problem as what Tajikistan is going through right now.What our government did was opening up more local universities.That way, local youths would know what they should do once they finish high school.The government assist the youths in every way possible so that their minds and talents would not be wasted or gone to another country.After they graduate, it is only natural to incorporate these youths into the nation-building process.Today, it is almost taboo for our countrymen as well as our countrywomen NOT to have a bachelors degree.Plus, it is the norm to continue studies up until PhD level.I believe Tajikistan can be a developed country soon if they harness their youth's talent and ability to good use.
  • Jun 12 2012: With my children, instead of waiting for them to be curious and asking questions, I started conversations like this.... Did you know the sky really isn't blue. and go on and on and on...with everything from under a rock to the universe...Then when they got older to keep the interest alive, I played, "What if" and I would give a scenario of a person riding a bike up hill and the wind blowing thirty miles an hour, how would you find out how fast he was going, and what if you wanted to know how much muscle he was using...This would teach my children that all problems can be solved, you must first look in the right direction to find answers. All three of my children are smart and I am thankful. Only one put himself through college.
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    Jun 11 2012: I decided early on to enlist my children's help in keeping them healthy. I did not want to do battle with them every day to get them to eat vegetables for example. I figured that if they understood, they would realize why it was necessary. Too often i think that we still expect children to do what we tell them just because we say so. My kids knew (in simplified form) why eating something that they considered heinous-like brussel sprouts-was important- waw worthwhile and I taught that they were king (or queen) of their own tiny country- their body- and I taught them about things like invading germs and white blood cells (which I brought to life as Doozers - who were noble, self-sacrificing loyalcitizens who did battle with invadors for love of the king or queen). BTW brussel sprouts were bombs that destroyed the invaders (little boys are fascinated by armaments even if they have pacifist mothers). Thus with one story, I taught them not only how their bodies worked (circulatory system was canals and rivesr), never to introduce invaders into their country (never to stick their fingers in their noses) to kill their loving loyal citizens and concepts like self discipline and hygiene.
    With five very active kids - I had only 3 sets stitches and 2 broken bones.- maybe that is just luck but... The only downside is that my twins once felt very embarrrassed when they argued with a teacher about their conviction that Doozers really exist. My son who just graduated in Economics still is miffed about my role in that debacle.
    It wasn't until my university days that I realized that one of my basic values is that everyone needs to give infomred consent and they must be assisted to understand not just the issues but also the ramifications.
  • Jun 11 2012: Well, an amazing question!
    Sadly today... different students live at different places with different situations they face in life.
    Somewhere, the country lacks opportunities, some parents are not supportive or liberal, some education systems are fundamentally flawed, some students stay in a bad company... and there are a million more reasons why "education" today is not serving it's purpose.
    Now to answer your question... All the above conditions are merely an "ILLUSION". They are barriers made by students for themselves. There is no such thing as motivation needed for a student to Study resourcefully or purposefully. A student who wants to, will in any circumstances pursue his interests.
    Whats required is to free the students from the burden of marks, grades, GPAs or performance! Noone, especially students can ignore their conscience, that inner voice, the energy in the core... they will realize it only when given a chance to... Today their aim is not to pursue interests but rather... Score well, Perform well (thats the case in my country atleast)
    Noone or nothing can really "MOTIVATE" students to really know their core interests... It is only themselves who are REALLY capable of doing it!

    All that is required is the "Intent", "The Burning Desire", the desire to know something, the ambition to achieve something, the intent of contributing to the world. Well in my opinion, unless the students have a touch with their inner self, every education system will have its flaws, and just like today, majority of people will spend their lives trying to earn a living, then trying to earn luxury, and then more and more of it.... Few will really make useful contributions to the world, INVENT... DISCOVER... or CREATE!
    the world will continue to be a majority of ordinary unless it is WIDELY, EXTENSIVELY and OMNISCIENTLY PREACHED "The importance of The Realization of the Self"
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    Jun 10 2012: An excellent question Nekcruz.
    Like Angelo, I propose that the majority of information that scholastic institutions teach is largely unnecessary. Basic reading writing and mathematics, a spot of history and geography is all one needs to get started on. Most people have an interest that captures their imagination at some time early in their life. That is what needs to be recognized by educators and used to propel the student forward in an excited, free spirited and fast tracked learning program aimed at self exploratory learning. Even if the student changes the focus of interest, the potential learning opportunities would be enormous and far outweigh conventional delivery.
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      Jun 16 2012: Thank you very much, Robert. Very helpful advices.
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      Jun 25 2012: I totally agree with what you said in your last few sentences :-), but I disagree with your statement about knowing only a "spot of history and geography" esp. due to the world being so small now. I know people can just "google" that information, but to truly understand how we (meaning in all of our countries) got where we are today and the problems we are having due to those historical choices, but truly studying and discussing them helps with this understanding; but besides this, maybe, just maybe, the past atrocities will not be repeated (even though they seem to be...sigh).
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        Jun 27 2012: Of course Linda I agree with your premise but I would suggest that if one isnt interested in delving into those issues because of the subject itself, then little learning will take place.

        I am certainly not suggesting that they arent as equally as important as any other field of study.

        I think we all realise the older one gets the more interests we delve into...as is our want at those times.
        I also feel that a lot of history and geography can be found and explored in nearly every line of study, so a clever facilitator will emerse that data into his/her delivery of the chosen field of interest or study.
        I join you in sincerely hoping atrocities are never repeated.

        thankyou for your reponse

  • Jun 10 2012: Making it easier for people who have joined the workforce to improve their academic standing by attending evening classes, having flexible working hours and perhaps offering certain incentives such as better chances for promotions.
  • Jun 10 2012: Teach them to ask questions, and in turn you will show them the universe.

    The world is a beautiful place and absolutely everyone can contribute to it in a fundamental way. If they are shown how to explore questions in a logical and scientifically honest way they will see that they have learned how to find who they truly are, what they are passionate about, and exactly how wonderful life can be. I am not suggesting that everyone become scientists (although that would be great :-P) I am only suggesting that if they learn how to ask questions the rest will follow.

    Also, there are some business schools that work with sponsors (as a sort of exchange program) to start small businesses in countries to help them market and sell products in that country. You might look into this and suggest a partnership with other schools or businesses to try and develop markets in this way. (I think Yale may have done something like this)
  • Jul 6 2012: Don't even try. Did not work in the past and will not now. Children live for the now, not the future.
  • Jul 6 2012: I don't know anything about your situation except what I read in your intro, so this suggestion is probably naive.

    Get one smart child and have her start a business. A real, profit making business. The profits can be small, but they have to be enough to make an impression on the other students, who will then want a business too. In the course of starting these businesses, the questions will flow. What makes a market? Use them to expand into other subjects, like the history of business in Tajikistan and Russia. The real opportunity is show them the value of education in running a business. These children need a reason for schooling, and that reason is the same one we all have, to make money.

    If everybody wants to go to Russia for a job, Tajikistan needs entrepreneurs.
  • N SHR

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    Jul 1 2012: It starts in early age. When parents talk about someone in an admiring way you learn that thing/job is good. My own parents always admired top scientists and engineers and university professors (as we saw them in tv programs and science news, and reports and stuff), and they never admired people who had gone to other countries/or done stuff just to get rich.. the priority of our family in me and my siblings' childhood was our school and education.. My primary school was pretty normal and boring actually, and if I didn't have the motivation to study well already, I wouldn't have gotten this far.
    It all begins in the family.
  • Steve C

    • +1
    Jun 29 2012: The problem is not that we have reached the azimuth of science, but that we are past the pinnacle of empathy, (or we have been distracted from it).
    It may help to list here Gever Tulley's school; also could TED have that guy from FrogLogic (or Brene Brown) talk on why people (you, me) matter?

    I suppose that when a young person meets someone who is open-minded & open-hearted - who gives & asks-for help, when they can see for themselves that there is a natural purpose for them, then they will jump at it. I think it was a slow fall. It would be tough to rise again quickly. Deeper values must change.

    Where is the major "input" to peoples' values - t.v. What is (mainstream, 5-8:pm) t.v. saying to value - things, sex, money, dross. What gets devalued - fears, weaknesses, insecurities, loneliness.

    Build a strong base. Build with integrity. Value people enough to spend time with them doing nothing. ("The real test of friendship is: Can you literally do nothing with the other person? Can you enjoy together those moments of life that are utterly simple?" ~Eugene Kennedy) That doesn't mean always do nothing, but that the option is still a great one.
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    Jun 27 2012: This is an interesting question you rose on which I like and try to share my thoughts. There has never been a time before were it was that easy for young people to get distracted from their own education as we are facing today. And as long 'learning' will stay less entertaining than TV shows, video-games or smartphones it will be difficult for this to change. Basically I believe, that no one can be convinced to get more interested in education, they got to be 'infected' by their own curiosity to keep going within. So by following this thought the question then would be - how could the educational system today become more infectious? In my eyes not without fundamental changes in itself and the society it is based on. And you got to start early with this infection, no, better to say, we should stop curing it the moment our children enter elementary school. By their given nature, children are naturally curious about and interested in almost anything yet we fail repeatingly to preserve this gift and in many cases it becomes almost impossible later to get them reinfected. So we as 'society' may reconsider the purpose of our educational systems towards the education of each individual of its own good, instead of 'growing' the need for their 'economical purposes' only. From there you would then 'only' need to question globally the necessity of unequally balanced chance and resources for the citizen of this world to be able to reconsider from there a more human reason for mankind and its existence. As long for many wealth is reason to aim for it only, and in fact we do not offer many alternatives at the moment, it may be difficult for any 'infection' to be self-sustained by its individual purpose. This sounds a bit socially critical and indeed it is. But where if not there do we have to start to change for a better? But can we achieve this? Well I think we can and one day we may have to. Till then we may ease symptoms by mimicking the temptation of modern media in .edu
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      Jun 27 2012: First Jan-Bernard, I adore your diction choice of "infected" when describing being interested in learning as that what it really is, and those who are truly immersed in it are almost like they have a fever which will not break until they reach their goal, and I love when that happens. But are you also saying that most German students are no longer motivated to learn due to technology and its distractions? OH NO, as from my experience, the smartest and most driven students I had were the foreign exchange students from Germany. And when they would share what their school was like with their American classmates, probably 98% of them would state that they would never do what they have to do to get good grades. So, then this problem is growing....
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        Jun 27 2012: I am afraid, Linda, the problem is growing in all so called modern societies and Germany is no exception from this and never was. The exchanage students you lectured have most likely been part of the German academic elite already, as the poor students usually stay 'at home', just as I did. :o)

        Retrospectively and by comparing oranges with oranges most of your American students may deserve rehabilitation I propose ... :o)

        Germany is struggling as well to maintain a high standard of education and keeps emphasising on forming elite Universities, which actually underlines the explosiveness of the situation. There is no shortage in students, on the contrary, there is inflation in value in earning a degree and this goes globally and because of it. In my view the society is changing rapidly towards a future which became to uncertain, to unstable due to the nervousness and instability of the global market. If you want to keep up, be quick, be better and don't worry about the details. Yet it may be in the details for those who adore knowledge and for what it can be. In my career I have seen most brilliant scientists, most beautiful and creative minds, which got thwarted by a new grown species which I call 'science manager'. Neither brilliant, nor smart yet aggressively effective in short turn achievements. Anyway, the speed and need of efficiency is rapidly increasing which will make it even more difficult to encourage young people to stay or to get 'infected' by their own curiosity. Creativity in all disciplines is shy in its very nature and if it is getting 'to loud' outhere it may not show up against a 'three year return on investment' judgement. So even for those who have this fever it may become more and more difficult for them just to follow their inner calling and not to streamline themselves towards the ideal candidates for human resources of global player companies. I truly hope I am mistaken and I am sorry not to have any optimistic news for you on this topic.
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    Jun 25 2012: Nekruz, first, I loved your diction choice of "choke" when talking about today's media as that is how I see it as well. But to address your topic, I don't know where to begin really as each country has its own educational system, culture and problems. What amazes me, though, is this whole idea of the world getting smaller as we are now able to open up and reveal ourselves with a click of a button and conversing in one language (which I hope will not lead to the demise of more). And what I am learning due to this, is that it seems more and more students are becoming less motivated. I hadn't really seen it when I taught in Europe in 2007 nor in any of my foreign exchange students as they outshone even my brightest students in class. But this trend is really becoming global.

    However, I think that one needs to look at where some of these countries are coming from, for I truly think that "we are what we were when" if you can follow that statement. Take for example your country. It came out of war & disintegration of a government that had been in place for decades. What had been the "status quo" for many was gone even if that was one of poverty and dependence on others. I know that my friends who are in Serbia are going through this as well. They went to school and were "Young Pioneers" believing in their country and their government. They began college and then " the wall" fell and holy hell broke loose in that area, and their lives were never the same. But add to this, the influence of America due to cable tv, music, and movies as well as the development of the mobile phone and net, and we have what we have today.

    I think it IS hard to motivate students today but the reasons in doing so vary, again due to where they live and how they live. You said that kids there want to move to Russia and make money, but you need to ask yourself, could they do that there in your country even with an education? To me that is the question that needs to be addressed first.
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      Jun 27 2012: I guess that I believe that it has always been a challenge to motivate students because they are finding their own way to their destination by following some inner voice and the noise we make often just distracts and annoys them.
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      Jun 27 2012: Thanks, Linda. Thank you very much! :)
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      Jul 2 2012: Mam I would like to apoligize for my delay in responding to you partly bad manners partly side tracked mostly sliping memory these 100+ days are tough angain I'm sorry
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    Jun 25 2012: Ghandi Ji did not motivate the world with words primarily- it was with example and by being willing to pay the price demanded by the corrupt if need be. Human conviction is inspiring and when it is in action deeply moving. I was the first in my family to get a degree. All five of my own kids went to university (and some are still going) at their own expense. I admire them.
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    Jun 24 2012: I think that the main problem nowadays is that children don't see education as something that really helps them in life and just see it as something that they have to do. Some decades ago, not all countries could or would offer their students the possibility of going to university, and those that did had to study hard but also were rewarded with a well-paid job and a respected position in society.
    I think this is the main issue that need to be resolved, children have to understand that education is what can make you overcome your condition, of course if you want to overcome it which is again something that needs shifting in their mentality. I often see my friends that have no concern regarding their future, they just live for the moment and usually wake up to the real life too late to actually choose a right path, ending up disappointed with their lives and wishing they studied more or took the right decisions at the right time.
    I think education should only be mandatory to those who want to study and want to improve their and other's lives, because all the funding that goes into supporting free education will be redirected to other areas and we will only support the people that want and deserve it. Free education, and by free I mean with unrestricted access not just referring to finances, is also good and bad, but I think that university studies should only be accessible to those that have a genuine interest and not to students that just go into higher education to get a piece of paper called diploma. Moreover, colleges and secondary schools should have technical and labour related profiles so that skilled workers in areas that are needed can come into work right after finishing them, to practice the skills they have acquired and not go into further education so all the nations become a population of educated unemployed people because the jobs are not destined for highly skilled individuals.
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      Jun 27 2012: Maria, i totally agree what you said. in my country ,the goverment has been investing much fund to the high education system in the past decades, which made more and more young people get the opportunity to go to colleges. however most of them face the same prolem now , they can't find the expected job after graduation.some reasons contribute to such situation, the main reason is that many students think they should deserve a well-paid job in the big city and don't want to acted as the skilled workers, thus led to the conflicton between different industries. at the same time many students begin to wonder whether it is neccessary to achieve high education.
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        Jun 27 2012: I know, this is the same problem in my country, since communism collapsed the number of students that could access higher education increased a lot, for example, in the past there were 100 places to study engineering in the whole country, whereas today there are like 10000 and this means the quality of education drops the number of graduates increases and the jobs remain the same. Also, I don't find it bad to work a job that you are over skilled for, after all you need to survive and if you are good at what you do you will have the chance to work your way up. I think that even agriculture is a good area to invest in and work in but you need money to start your own business so it is a little hard to do as a graduate, however, students nowadays find it shameful and want to have glamorous jobs in big cities which is regrettable.
        • Jun 27 2012: seems you are chinese like me according what you said above
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        Jun 27 2012: Me? I am Romanian, but Li Jinlei I think is Chinese judging by her name.
  • Gord G 50+

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    Jun 18 2012: These are difficult questions to answer from a western perspective, so instead I'll ask more questions. You mentioned that students graduating from high school are seeking jobs in Russia. What type of jobs? And why do they see this as a better alternative to higher education? Is this purely an economic decision or is it connected to how they perceive the current political climate? Is short term gratification, more enticing than long term uncertainties?

    I know students in North America grapple with a lot of the same issues when determining what they are truly passionate about. Students today are exposed to stories of success, but they're also exposed to the enumerable unfiltered stories of the disenfranchised. The rarity of the former may seem unattainable, while the prevalence of the latter may seem unavoidable. This is why it's difficult to give a blanketed response, considering the wide range of cultural factors.

    Motivation is directly connected to our faith in the outcome of our labours.
  • Jun 18 2012: I think we need to find a way to spark the need to learn in children, I wouldn't be against expanding our north american high schools another year that is entirely optional classes of different varieties, so the kids can find something that speaks to them.
  • Jun 15 2012: Studying is an investment and thus has to yield returns. First of all, you have to make sure that studying is actually worth it, and then demonstrate it to the people. If students don't invest time in studying, it may not be a motivational problem, but a problem of the market, or how the students see it.
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    Jun 14 2012: It all starts with the parents and at an early age. If parents start to educate their children at a young age, never introduce them to addictive video games and give to them the thought that academics is the most important thing in their childhood as well as high motivation, the next generation could almost all be geniuses.
  • Jun 12 2012: Lead by example! Encourage! Faciltate! Oh and always keep in mind that what on the one hand may seem as being "perceived and purposeful studying" to one person, may not necessarily be perceived as such by another. I say so long as the right skills are being fostered, the subject matter (in most cases) is of little importance.
  • Jun 12 2012: well learning just for the fun of learning is nice yet, when poor, you need to learn a task that really pays the bills, & that gives you a chance to grow, the industry should focus on educating people since they are young, so that the outcome is just a natural step, and not a forced one, in most of the world this idea is barely sought or thought, yet there are places where this is pretty common, like in Japan, the tech to produce a samurai saber has deep ruts with their religion and social minds, honor & honesty, are embedded in the very core of many cultures, thanks to their beliefs nature around them prospers regardless of the # of people in their culture.

    psychological tests should be mandatory world wide this since kindergarden and perhaps before, this will prevent hereditary deceases & or at least will give a better chance for those suffering a genetic "thing" that may affect the rest of their lives, also this tests will assist in finding those ho are mentally dangerous to themselves and to those around them, also is the chance to give a proper education to those ho are smarter or ho are not so smart, improving the outcome that any country bets for, I would like to insist in the medical benefits.

    The government plays a huge roll, because if they are not clear with the goals, they will end up destroying the lives of hoo knows how many citizens, and their environment.

    Regardless of age, teach the poor a task, a skill, that really pays the bills, do the same with the unemployed, and with the homeless, if it is related to strategies that protect the environment even better
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    Jun 12 2012: Why on earth would you want to do this? What outcome do you expect from 'perceived and purposeful studying?' What are you trying to fix? All I can figure is that a lot of people will end up knowing a lot of useless information. So what?

    Sounds like you have a lot of young people that are interested in finding employment. That is not necessarily a bad thing. Somebody has to do the work, why not young people? When they get older and that kind of labor starts to hurt, then they can study to do something other than manual labor. Pain is a great motivator.