Students can’t be expected to pay attention in unchallenging classes

Natalie Ekstrand

Over the years educators and administrators have pointed out the decline in education in California.  Scores and funding are both down.  Remedial courses and ESL courses are popping up everywhere and many teachers are worried about challenging students too much. 


As a sophomore at Saddleback I can say being too challenged has certainly never been a problem.  If anything I feel that classes are so easy and unchallenging that I become apathetic and lethargic.  I realize this may be a bit of an exaggeration.  Not every course is completely easy and I certainly haven’t taken all the courses provided.  Many students I know are of the same opinion.


Students are pushed to do well in grade school in preparation for college. 


Students are pushed to do well in middle school in preparation for college. 


Finally students are pushed in high school to do well for college.  By the time students arrive in college they come to the realization that all this previous work was done so they could pay their dues once again in identical general education requirements.  Delayed gratification can only motivate kids for so long.


The fact that classes are so repetitive and require loads of busy work leaves many students unmotivated and bored.  There is such a variety of genius in students; colleges need to find a way to offer challenging courses at every level.  Students have been fed every generalized education course and standardized test imaginable by the time they finish high school.  If instructors want to motivate students they need to give them what they promised; freedom to study what they want.


Students have been swallowing vanilla administrative courses for so long.  They deserve a little variety once they reach college.  Not to mention credentials. While known as a pain in the butt to the teaching world, credentials give instructors a positive method of teaching.  I can’t help but admit I enjoyed a much more enriched and clear teaching style from my grade school and high school professors.  Maybe credentials are needed for college professors as well.