How to graduate without knowing anything

Watered-down technical training and the drawbacks of working in teams have both proven to be hot buttons among Machine Design readers. It turns out engineers aren't the only ones concerned with these issues. If this letter to columnist Bob Lewis is to be believed, it is now possible to earn a degree in data processing without learning how to write a computer program.....ANY computer program. Here are a few selected passages:

....Imagine my surprise that (the writer's daughter) could get a four-year undergraduate degree in "data processing" without having to write a single program in any language! All such assignments were routinely structured as group (team) exercises; it turned out that the groups who found a natural affinity for each other always had at least one member who could do all or most of the work for each assignment. There were no tests as I think both you and I understand the concept. Everything was a "project," and each team was responsible for its own effort............The bottom line is that my daughter never developed any real IT skills........... I realized there was little chance of her landing an IT job and was glad she didn't because she clearly had developed no genuine, useful, marketable IT skills. She would have been found out very quickly.......

If you have ever gone to your neighborhood electronics store and gotten the feeling that you know more than the technician behind the repair counter, now you can begin to understand why. You can read the whole missive at the following link. I'd recommend reading the comments at the end as some of them are priceless:,0&source=IFWNLE_nlt_advice_2010-05-12

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