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  1. #21
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Finland's primary schools are consistently rated the best in the world, but the U.S. has the best colleges/universities. It's not even close.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  2. #22
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    My career is heavily populated by upper-middle to upper-class individuals because it requires social competition from childhood and early adolescents to get into the best higher education and then onward to a career. I grew up at the edge of poverty and have largely overcome my financial/class obstacles through hard work and maximizing on whatever genetic intellectual advantages I've had, but I sometimes wonder if it is enough. I find that it is generally better to not let my peers know that as a child we struggled for food and heat instead of excelling and winning competitions. I don't expect they would comprehend what I have accomplished in light of their society and class. Once I'm more established I could share more to help inspire other people with a rough start. In the meantime I think it would be more a source of confusion, and I need to focus on getting work. Growing up in a lower class frees you from assumptions of social/ego entitlement which can actually be an advantage in the eyes of potential employers who have to deal with conflict resolution.

    Growing up I did notice that the upper-class generally behaves quite differently socially with those worth impressing. They behave differently towards those with little social power like my family. Seeing that growing up has made it much more difficult to be manipulated and instead more familiar with seeing through facades at the raw truth. That is one thing that is quite positive about having little social power. People present themselves honestly because they have nothing to gain and no reason to fool you.
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  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    Does class or social class ever trip you up or become an obsticle to social interaction? I mean have you ever begun a conversation and realised that you're poles apart from the person you're talking to and class, status or strata is the root cause?
    Yes, if for primarily reasons of working class people usually having had to work hard for things or at least go through some period of economic struggle whether while with their parents or in their own adult life, while people who were born into higher socio-economic classes have no real concept of such a notion, and therefore in my opinion gives many of them a sense of non-reality of how difficult it can be for people of lower socio-economic classes to even get started in the adult world. But other than that, no. However, that one thing can be a huge issue for me, depending on the obliviousness of the individual and just how much they were spoiled by their parents.



    Sometimes its more apparent when people of particular status and rank dont conform to a certain expectation of grace or respectability, the tendency of some people with a lot of wealth to behave like hobos or low rent derelicts tends to shore up the worst sort of class warrior prejudice from my teens. I'm not sure if that's a reaction to a certain sort of "class fail" rather than "class" per se though and I dont like generally ill mannered behaviour.
    I think "class" is positive thing in terms of being educated and having good taste and manners. However, this definition of "class" seems to be seperate from socio-economic class in the 21st century. It was associated with the upper class at one point because of their greater advantages in education and access to things that are more widely available to a larger group of people because of democracy and regulated capitalism.

    Now, any asshat with money is considered "upper class" even if they're ignorant and ill-mannered, but on the other hand, people from the lower socio-economic classes can now be "classy" in the educated/mannered sense of the world, which is a plus.

  4. #24

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    Expanding on the above poster's comments, I want to add that a better indicator of ones class in the US is not necessarily how much money one makes/has but how one spends it. For example, what proportion of your earnings go towards, say, food versus entertainment? home improvement versus travel?--with a positive correlation to a larger proportion towards entertainment and travel. Also, how does one spend? Restaurants, theatre, informal education... or large-screen TV, cars, sporting events? There is something to be said about the tastes of people making such purchases, even if on a sheer income level the people purchasing from either appear similar. I would imagine that people who come from different income brackets but who share similarities in spending habits are more inclined to develop rapport, than the inverse.

  5. #25
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    Finland's primary schools are consistently rated the best in the world, but the U.S. has the best colleges/universities. It's not even close.
    For PhD, yes (excepting the Ecolé Normale Superieure). For bachelor's and master's they're average.
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  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    For PhD, yes (excepting the Ecolé Normale Superieure). For bachelor's and master's they're average.
    O RLY? Looks like almost all U.S. and UK, and then a few others in Europe and Asia.

    http://www.ulinks.com/topuniversities.htm

    http://www.usnews.com/articles/educa...-top-400-.html

    http://www.topuniversities.com/unive...-rankings/home

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Academi...d_Universities
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  7. #27
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    It's about the quality of learning, don't be a troll...those rankings are mostly (and rightfully) based on the quality and quantity of research. That's why I'm saying that PhDs gain the most by being in the US, because they can exposed (and countribute to) cutting-edge research.
    ENTj 7-3-8 sx/sp

  8. #28
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    I am not trolling, I just know that American higher education is really considered that good. I won't deny that many of our schools are diploma mills, but the quality of learning is extremely high. That is why so many people from other countries come here to study.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  9. #29
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    Does class or social class ever trip you up or become an obsticle to social interaction?
    Class doesn't trip me up, but it obviously affects the mass lower classes. There's a show called What Would You Do and they always dress their actors up or down to see how it affects the actions of the general public. And the higher the class they appeared to be apart of, the better treatment they got, the more positive attributes they were given and the less likely the masses were to interfere. Like I said, it's obvious, but it's still interesting to view it from the outside.

    I mean have you ever begun a conversation and realised that you're poles apart from the person you're talking to and class, status or strata is the root cause?
    I'm usually poles apart from the people I come across, so it's not something that is noticed based on class.

    When you think of or use the word class is it positive or negative? Is it mainly one or the other or can you switch?
    I think there are far too many people using it to describe themselves; especially when it's people who wouldn't know class if it took a shit on their table.

    What do you mean by it usually? On the one hand class is used to shut people down or off but on the other being classy or having some class are things which people, all people, seem to desire.
    When I do use the word, I'm usually referring to tact.
    “'Fuck', I think. What a beautiful word. If I could say only one thing for the rest of my life, that would be it.”

  10. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    I am not trolling, I just know that American higher education is really considered that good. I won't deny that many of our schools are diploma mills, but the quality of learning is extremely high. That is why so many people from other countries come here to study.
    Oy, I have a lot of comments on this! But I shall limit it to a few key points.

    1) The rankings systems you named earlier are based upon the quality/quantity of research produced, how much grant funding the school receives, how many nobel scholars there are in that school, yadda yadda... NOT the quality of teaching--which is why the small liberals arts schools with very good reputations don't get ranked very well on those lists.

    2) Many people from other countries come to the US to study for a variety of reasons... one being "brand recognition" in their home country (that is related more to a school's marketing campaign), the opportunity to improve their English, and just wanting an experience abroad. I wouldn't say that it is entirely because the US has the best higher education, even if this is the case. However, these international students come from exceptionally prosperous background, and oftentimes US universities treat them as full tuition-paying cash cows (just to be able to enter most schools require of international students proof of a certain minimum in your bank account). It is not as meritocratic an admissions system for them as it is for domestic students, so it's a stretch to say that their presence increases the quality of learning. And... I am currently doing research on the dynamics of social integration on campus, because there is not much evidence that the presence of international students necessarily adds to "diversity" as they are often self-clustered in their own groups.

    3) Interestingly study abroad patterns are changing. The US still receives the most international students, but the rate of growth has slowed in recent years. International students in the US mostly come from Asia; now there is much more intra-region Asian study abroad (with China's growth rate of incoming international students skyrocketing).

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