Originally posted by: westonpa
I think the value of a degree as with any training is for the individual person to decide, i.e., is it worth something to them. One person may get a lot from a top engineering degree whereas I know some people do not and yet others may get a lot from a media studies degree whereas others do not. The value of something is not just related to getting a good job....work and life balance is becoming more important.
That said of course some people invest their time and money and do not get their just rewards at the end of it and thus for them their degree may not seem to be of value. I think the real problem in all this is that training providers, career advisors and the last government mislead many young people and sold them a story about 'go get yourself and degree and you will do very well', i.e., like it was the be all and end all of everything. Qualifications are just that and in my opinion it was the advice coming from supposed reliable sources which was poor. If we tell young people realistically and honestly about their degree choices and where they may or may not lead then they can make their own decisions and have a better idea of how things may work out....we hope.
Something that has to be taken into account (that doesn't seem to click with many people) is that education and qualifications are two completely different things in practice.
Holding qualifications does not necessarily mean one is educated because the course material leading to the qualifications could be out of date or poor quality, and to achieve high grades in exams or assignments means having to study the material regardless of what it is. Anything else is not a method to gain the qualification! My son holds an A grade computing A Level but was quite disappointed with the course material being dated, biased, and failing to cover many applications of computers. He was also disappointed to a lesser extent with the A Level maths course material.
On the other hand, it is perfectly possible for somebody to learn modern high quality information either outside of educational institutions or on taught or research courses that do not lead to well recognised / valued qualifications.