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Going back to school?
#1
I'm thinking of going back to school to do some more undergraduate work or pursue a Master's Degree. Any advice?
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#2
That's great! What are you doing now, career wise? Ever since you took your leave from the forum some time ago, we haven't kept up with you.

And what do you plan on pursuing with the masters?

Over this time, I think you have changed a bit in your overall thinking. And for the better.
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"INSIDE EVERY PROGRESSIVE IS A TOTALITARIAN SCREAMING TO GET OUT" - David Horowitz

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#3
Thanks for the encouragement, it means a lot. I am really interested in Cultural and Physical Anthropology, and hope to become an Academic of some kind. My career situation sucks right now.

I have changed my thinking, it seems like. I am more Paleoliberal rather than Neoliberal. Awhile ago I posted a screed against feminism; my thoughts on that have softened somewhat now. I can go more into detail about this later.
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#4
Quote: ... hope to become an Academic of some kind ...

Good luck to you ... and I don't want to sound like kill joy ... but I would consider the possibility of some major structural changes in our higher education system coming fairly soon. The current rate of "education inflation" at 'traditional' universities and colleges is not sustainable ... and they're increasingly in a money competition with web based rivals [whether they wish to admit it or not]. As you approach your studies, consider if there are (or could be) facets of your field or interests that would lend themselves to "remote learning". You might be able to position yourself for a particular niche or sweet spot. Just a thought.

I would expect that most 'traditional' Academics would be appalled by this and will probably miss the bus. Embrace change ... and you're much more likely to find a seat on it. And it's not exactly ground breaking 'change' anyway. I took my first 'remote' graduate level class almost 20 years ago when CU had a "remote learning" program out of the Engineering program where they mailed VHS tapes twice a week for the class. As I recall they also had a real time microwave link for larger companies that could afford it.
"Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard."
-- Henry Mencken
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#5
When I first went to grad school at UT, my idea was to specialize in archaeology. Ethnology was interesting, but once I found myself among heavy hitters in the physical anthropology field, I changed over at the end of the quarter. The only thing that would really peak my interest in anthropological archeology today would deal with trying to make sense of possible early European(Solutrean) influence in Pre-Columbian North America.

I am still pretty much oriented toward early hominids, and how modern humans came to be what we are today. At the time I left school, the Neanderthal question was really taking shape, and its still going. But I believe the next real push will be the question of just how late Homo Erectus managed to prosper in the Indonesian-Austrailian area. Recent Australian aborigine skulls definitely point to modern day homo erectus, and not modern humans. I'm just waiting for that to come to a boil.

However, I missed my real calling in life, and its too late for me to do this over again. To me, there is no better intellectual profession than geology. There are literally so many specialties within the field, that the sky is pretty much the limit. And the three professionals I admire most are Eugine Shoemaker, along with William Ryan and Walter Pitman. All geologists: shoemaker in astro-geology, and the other two in the Black Sea deluge. They started out in the mapping of the Mediterranean floor for possible oil exploitation, but wound up in the Black Sea and pretty much putt two and two together with regards to the ancient flood myth.

If I was your age, I would go straight out and do everything I could to become a geologist. That's where the real science is at, and the field of understanding the planet, or even our solar system, is literally wide open. That's where anyone can make a name of themselves. I can't seem to get enough of such things as how the solar system affects the planet, how plate tectonics affects everything here, mass extinctions, abiotic oil, or the geologic record of Impactors throughout history. The sky's the limit!

As for your thinking, we'll make a Classic Liberal out of you yet. After all, its only about Individual Liberty, right? S22
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"INSIDE EVERY PROGRESSIVE IS A TOTALITARIAN SCREAMING TO GET OUT" - David Horowitz

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#6
I'm on the 100 year plan. Six credits in 20 years. The sky may be the limit, but it takes a while to get there depending on your 'velocity'. S5

(I'd say 'acceleration' but it really doesn't really seem appropriate in my case)
"Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard."
-- Henry Mencken
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#7
ohn and mr_yak give good advice. I would add that academics as a career move is fine just now - but the future outlook is becoming less so. A teacher gets a bigger salary by teaching in "war zones" (Like downtown Detroit) but most of the money is in non-teaching higher academic support positions, like "curriculum director" in a school district. The trend is to self-taught classes - and tenure seems to be on its way out.
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#8
Thanks everyone for your advice. Maybe my plan is unrealistic, we'll have to see. In the other thread I made, Atlantic magazine did point out that, in the future, there will be far less opportunities for professors.

(08-09-2014, 03:06 PM)WmLambert Wrote: ohn and mr_yak give good advice. I would add that academics as a career move is fine just now - but the future outlook is becoming less so. A teacher gets a bigger salary by teaching in "war zones" (Like downtown Detroit) but most of the money is in non-teaching higher academic support positions, like "curriculum director" in a school district. The trend is to self-taught classes - and tenure seems to be on its way out.

What do you mean self-taught classes?

John: I'm interested in geography too and geology. I recall you were also interested in physical anthropology.
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#9
Hey, if you can get 'credentialed' ... and who knows what that's going to mean in a few years, you can probably find a way to become 'affiliated' with an 'approved' institution of higher learning ... and again, who knows what that's going to mean in a few years and contract web classes out of your basement ... or living room ... where ever. You can limit the class size to some number that can efficiently teleconference ... and ... poof!! ... no ivy covered walls, just instruction, questions, homework, testing and feedback. Essentially, professors can become contractors. If you really know your shit, and can efficiently instruct others, you can probably hussle a very good living. If you're Ward Churchill or Elizabeth Warren ... probably not so much. If it's something that requires hands on, then other arrangements will need to be made ... but frankly, I don't remember too many 'labs' required for my Liberal Arts classes.
"Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard."
-- Henry Mencken
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#10
I wouldn't want to become some kind of a contractor, I'd want to become affiliated with a university.

Anyway, I was thinking of taking an undergraduate course or two, as a non-matriculated student, to get recommendation letters. Does anyone have experience doing this type of thing? To those with experience, is it a good idea, or should I just take the GRE?
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#11
(08-16-2014, 06:19 AM)Anonymous24 Wrote: I wouldn't want to become some kind of a contractor, I'd want to become affiliated with a university.

Anyway, I was thinking of taking an undergraduate course or two, as a non-matriculated student, to get recommendation letters. Does anyone have experience doing this type of thing? To those with experience, is it a good idea, or should I just take the GRE?

I would suggest you do both. That way you have covered your bases. S22
___________________________________________________________________________________________________
"INSIDE EVERY PROGRESSIVE IS A TOTALITARIAN SCREAMING TO GET OUT" - David Horowitz

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