Education Vs. Schooling: Is it The Same? – Learn Liberty

Think back to your time in high school. Did
you ever feel that you were in prison? Did you ever feel that you were in a machine that
had its own purposes and goals and had no relation to what you actually wanted to do
or achieve? If you did then you shouldn’t be surprised, because this reflects the nature
of what the modern school is. The modern school was invented by the Prussians
after 1806. Before then, education was delivered in many different ways. What we think of as
a school was invented in that particular time and place. And it was invented for a very
particular purpose, which was to produce loyal, obedient subjects and soldiers and people
who would also be productive and obedient workers. It’s this that explains why school
is the way it is and has the features that it has. It explains why it is that the school
day is divided up into rigid time-structured blocks. It explains why it is that the organization
of the school is hierarchical and highly structured. It explains why it is that people are taught
with people their own age instead of people who are at the same stage of interest or ability
as themselves. And it explains why in many school systems one of the functions of the
system is to direct people into particular life paths to sort out young people into different
kinds of career groups. To the extent that education actually does
take place in schools, it’s a happy accident or a by-product. Now there are many people
who work in schools who believe that education, in fact, is the main point of what they’re
doing and who are trying very hard to educate the people in their charge. However, the problem
is that the whole system they’re working in—the way it’s set up, the way it’s
organized—is hostile to that goal and endeavor. So that they’re in the unfortunate position
of constantly trying to push water uphill, if you will. And any success they have is
gained against the odds. What we need to realize is education and schooling are not the same
thing. In fact, because we think that schooling is the same thing as education, we have a
radically impoverished idea of what education is and could be. Why, for example, do we assume that education
should only take place at one stage of a person’s life? Education is something that can take
place at any stage in someone’s life, and indeed should do. Why assume that we have
to educate people the same age all together? Surely this is a crazy way of doing it. Why
do we have to deliver education in the highly structured and formalized way that schools
require us to do it in? Education is something which is central to most people’s lives. What
we need to do is to get away from the idea that schools are the only way in which we
can deliver education.

100 thoughts on “Education Vs. Schooling: Is it The Same? – Learn Liberty”

  1. I find it interesting that kids, just before they reach schooling age, will ask you so many questions it will drive you insane. Then, after a year of school or two, they have almost no interest in learning anything.

  2. I agree, although my university has class times that are scheduled, it is more guided by the wants of the student. This seems to be much more about k-12 schools.

  3. Education is defined, the process of receiving or giving systematic instruction, esp. at a school or university. Schooling is defined, education or training received, esp. at school. It should be, education is not the same as learning. Learning is defined, the acquisition of knowledge or skills through experience, study, or by being taught. Learn Liberty used the wrong words on this one.

  4. Parents would not want to get rid of the current educational system, as it equates to free daycare. Sort of. They pay for it through taxes, but people don't usually equate their benefits from government as tax dollars. They only equate other peoples benefits from government as tax dollars.

  5. Little kids love to learn, ever hear "why? Why? Why?"! In school though lunch/recess is the some how the best part of the day. I go to a small private school non traditional and it is wayyyyy better. The principle bought us lunch today!

  6. If you like the system off schooling America has, then your education has failed you. A short history lesson on how we got where we are.

  7.  I remember when the 08 election occurred and I was probably more of a Liberal then, my 8th grade english teacher showed us pictures of George Bush looking like a fool after 9/11 and made a joke out of it.

    I look back on this version of me and I just shake my head at how ignorant I was back then.

  8. Learning is not always schools and formal education,thank goodness.The school system waits until people are in high school to teach foreign languages. It is so we'll proven that kids from 5-10 years old soak up languages easily.Since this is most usual you would think they would change and make things better,but they don't.Same is true for teaching math to small children.How often does that fail?Older kids learn it easier.No way will the system change to fit what most people are,developmentally.

  9. I don't agree with the proposal that Schooling is not a mostly a requirement for Education. Firstly, most people are not very keen to learn esp. young children. Secondly, the environment in a School and culture helps in staying focused on gaining knowledge even if for a short time and only to pass an exam. 

    Only thing really worth improving in the rigidity of grades or levels (there are no 1.5 grade for e.g.) so that children who are more eager to learn can do it at their own pace. However, this approach still has the problem that children have better bonding with children of their same age. But it is still a viable approach for very large schools

  10. If you're stuck in the rudimentary classes, it will definitely feel this way. But in the higher tier classes it's a different story.

    I doubt there is a better system for the US that can be universally implemented.

  11. School is, by definition, forced indoctrination. Hell, you can probably call it slavery if you get a lot of homework. I remember a time when I was depressed, and I loathed waking up everyday to go to school. Also, it's a proven fact that almost 90% of what we learn in school is forgotten by the time we are finished. Knowledge that can't be applied to your life is useless. Even though I skipped mountains of homework and hundreds of days of school, I was able to ace nearly every test, and my reading level was way higher than normal.

    Ah, feels good to get that off my chest..

  12. I agree. Upon many issues, the whole concept of standardization is fundamentally flawed. Schools just pass failing students to maintain their government benefits & aid due to educational systems assuming that one's GPA or SAT result determines a student's comprehensive knowledge. They only teach for the test, lacking depth, analysis & only focus on a brief, sweeping generalization that denies true knowledge. In addition, socialistic tendencies filter throughout it all but that's another discussion altogether..

  13. I remember one of my earliest memories about school was that it was a prison and the adults always said it was a school and it was good for me, but I knew….. that I was in a cage I was not allowed to escape

  14. There is a pervasive misconception that college is a service when in reality you are the product processed by the college, and you pay for that processing. Imagine if a pineapple paid for its own canning. Such a business model would be quite lucrative for the benefactors.

  15. Schooling = Cram it in all before the test, then forget it the next day.

    The topics you do want to learn you teach yourself.

  16. I hated school. All the real education I have ever received was on my own. There was the occasional class period that I enjoyed, but that is the only way to learn is if you want to. If you don't want to learn something, it won't happen.

  17. i love school, i never feel it as prison. personally i think school is not solely for education, its for children to discover each other. it doesnt matter the teachers are teaching arcane stuff we dont understand, because we got each other we can help each other learning them. school teaches us to be on time, and stick to a problem, how to navigate authority, and how to form relationship. i pity anyone who think school is bad – it means their relationship with others in the class is bad.

  18. Self education is the best education. Unfortuantely here in germany if you don´t have a Bachelor or finished an apprenticeship you are fucked. Here it is all about degrees.

  19. I work in a school IT department. A lot of the teachers seem to talk about how Finland or Hong Kong are innovating in the world of education. Admittedly, I don't know enough about their system to give an honest critique, but when I think about what might be wrong with education I instinctively compare it to other industries rather than other countries. In particular, I instinctively compare it to the tech industry.

    When I tell Pandora what kind of music I like and then give songs thumbs up or thumbs down, it uses an algorithm to figure out what sort of music I'm likely to like and what sort I'm likely to hate and it figures out how to just give me stuff that I'll like. If I buy something from eBay, I always see related goods that I might also be interested in. If I start recording shows with a Tivo, it will figure out the kinds of programs I like and suggest others for me. If I tell it to, it'll even just start guessing what I'd want based on what it knows I already like. Youtube seems to understand that I want videos about video games and politics. All around me, algorithms are learning about me, determining what I want and giving it to me.

    But not in our schools. Why are schools still 30 kids, all of the same age, in a room staring at a teacher? Every child is reading the same textbook and doing the same homework. Shouldn't algorithms be figuring out what each child knows and generating customized lessons around each individual child?

    Before the phonograph and motion picture, everyone who wanted to hear music or watch a drama had to go to the local theater. When the technology emerged to record them, society too the best musicians and actors and everyone started watching / listening to recordings of them, but we still have local theaters here and there. A teacher giving a lecture is essentially no different than any other performer. Why is it that we don't record the best lectures by some of the nations best teachers? Yeah, Khan Academy has been a huge advancement here. I'm not saying we'd replace our teachers, I'm just saying we'd redefine how we teach. Some teachers are good at giving an educational lecture, some are better at hosting a Socratic discussion, some are better at tutoring individual or small groups of students and some are good at devising lesson plans or grading papers. In the world we live in, everything from doctors to mechanics to programmers seems to have gotten ultra-specialized, but we seem to expect a teacher to be good at every aspect of teaching.

    Comparing American education to that of other countries is one thing, but when education anywhere is compared to other industries, its possible the whole world isn't doing it right.

  20. Personally, I think the idea of exams is extremely outdated. It's been proven that average Joe is nearly as effective as a highly qualified doctor or lawyer. When he can use a specialized computer program. Exams only test how good your short term memory is. A lot of the subjects I've got qualifications in I can barely remember. School needs to test you on speed of reciting information, innovative, practical, and evaluating skills. Not on how much you can remember.

  21. Honestly, I could have a professor go on and on about a math equation, and it'll do nothing but give me a migraine. The reason I read textbooks instead is because the only way I can learn is if I go after knowledge myself. That's why I hate the "education" system, because it forces us to "learn" things in such a way that we aren't actually learning at all. If I want to know something, I can go look up a dozen youtube tutorials, do research, read books and whatever I need to teach myself and it'll actually stick, because I sought it out myself.

  22. I totally agree with this video. The problem is in today's society you cant get a job without proving that you have passed all this schooling ordeal. Education doesnt matter to ''job givers'' anymore. Only your papers matter which have nothing to do with our education. I studied computer engineering but along the way i did a whole lotta things that are irrelevant.

  23. My friend took a cooking class in grade 12, then he got a job as an assistant cook at some Bar-And-Grill place. The other guy who was working there was actually a world class cher (why he was working at a bar I don't know) but my friend told me he learned more after 5 days of working with him than he did during the entire cooking class he took prior.

  24. I think the seperated specialisms with their own 'course' is generally wrong. there should be some stages after which it's possible to specialise in certain areas but concentrate in those  – all the time.  Why wait for a university to create the same situation? if you want to work in technology why not have several years concentrating in technology and skills which go with it like math? If your intention is to work in the creative arts why the need to learn higher math history or geography, much of which could be learned from books and small projects would be more interesting (based on museum trips or activities and take up a smaller amount of time?, and release more time to areas which involve creative thinking.
    Why not have earliers years which revolve around completing various projects which require different creative, evaluating and critical skills and which different aspects require implementation of the specialisms which are delivered in terms of achieving the objective of the project.  For instance math and ratios in terms of investing returns, or cash flow of a business project.  

    30-40 years ago most people didn't bother with degrees because people thought you could achieve a career without it.  That's why free higher education was affordable  Those 'pushing' for degrees have just created an artificial goal post in the selection process everywhere.  60% of American graduates can't get work in their chosen speciality, (but still end up in major debt that could have been a large chunk of a home). If you want to run a business (which is the most effective way of uplifting your income, you can understand the principles and issues of doing that in a 3 month, full time course.  9/10 of new small businesses fail because people are leaving school without the right education – ie they can't look after themselves and they are just conditioned and honed to become 'employees' in a system which revolves around expanding state and therefore personal debt.  

  25. Now here is a good one, very nicely done, thought provoking and incredibly true. I hope I am coming across better videos here.

  26. God damn, I thought school was entirely useless. You mean to tell me that all that bullshit had a purpose. No wonder I felt so unenthusiastic toward it. I am an anarchist by nature. One thing that I notices is that so many useful skills I now possess aren't even taught at all in schools. I play lead guitar. What school do you know of that teaches you to actually play an instrument? It is all just musical theory. And it is taught to you in a put you in your place sort of a way. 

  27. I'd love to get away from the idea that our current system of schooling is the only way to educate people, but I don't know of any promising alternatives… 

  28. Good video. This is one thing that millennials like myself need to understand. I keep reading and hearing "millennials are the most educated generation in history!" No, we're the most schooled generation in history. I'm sorry but many of the people in my generation are not educated. They have no idea how to think. Hardly any of us have ever read anything remotely related to philosophy. Hell, most of us don't read anything period, or if we do, it's bullshit on twitter or facebook. It's sad that we are the generation that has the more access to knowledge than any other generation (and it's not even close) but we choose not to utilize it. 
    So I do understand when people say that millennials are self-centered and narcissistic, but my retort would be, "How could we be any other way?" We've been told our whole lives that a college degree means you're smart and educated and since getting a college degree is easier than ever these days, everyone gets college degrees and they think they're smart and educated. In reality, they are stupid and uneducated. The only thing they got from college was a piece of paper and $30,000 in debt…and ironically, one of the easiest degrees in college to get is a degree in education. In fact the most common obstacle to getting a degree is not the rigorous coursework, but the cost of getting the degree.
    The education system in the United States is totally fucked. Ask your average high school graduate basic questions about english, history/geography, any of the sciences, or mathematics and they couldn't tell you shit. Worse, those are the "core subjects" that they've been allegedly learning for the past 13 years. Ask your average college graduate basic questions about those subjects and most of them wouldn't fare much better.
    I say all this as a college graduate. We all need to realize that schooling, including college, is not education.

  29. blablablabla.. how are you supposed to keep students concentrated on their studies without using strict deadlines and grades to track their progress and to compete with each other of same age, if you're suggesting that our schooling system is a bad thing?

  30. If a child is forced to o something that isn't interesting them and they feel they have no use for then they will probably not do well. If they are interested then they can truly pick it up with ease. The problem is forcing them to study things that don't apply to them. People of all ages should be free to get education on what applies to them at that time. When People feel this freedom they get it quite easily.

  31. I notice that WA state schools always want more money, backed by teacher unions WEA. It's all about teacher jobs and more taxes upon the citizens, not educating. Money thrown at bad ideas. Schooling is about obedience to a place of work or government. All the while, your place of work is happy to throw people away in today's work place. Charter schools are part of the solution, but here in WA the Washington Education Association- a union lobby, prevents any new creative ideas within a cost effective structure. WEA spent several million $ to get smaller class size mandated on this falls ballot, the cost is $3BN , yes, 3 Billion additional dollars. Yet none of them have any idea how to pay for this bloated bureaucracy called public schools. A new state income tax? Much higher property taxes? Our property taxes are ridiculously high for schools now. This is all taking place while local politicians were lobbied by Boeing and Microsoft for very large tax exemptions. The idea is to dump all this cost on working people too busy to fight this corrupt system of politics and schooling. 

  32. What evidence is there to support any of these claims? Some people just get pissed off because they're stupid and think they've been cheated out of an education.

  33. Agreed that the current school system is not the best educational system for everyone. However, it does work well for many. It would be interesting to hear what alternatives you suggest.

  34. More and More of the highly intelligent people I meet are finally figuring out that there is a system in place that held them back. This is why  homeschooling is so attacked. Homeschooler have a higher success rate at being the owner and not the employee. Education is limited until college, (finances-Alumni status) but the homeschoolers already gained the education, way before 18. Most don't attend college and avoid the education system. They work earlier, invest in property or anything going up in value years before the people from public schools even know what investing actually is. (If you were a wealthy person and you wanted less competition for you or your off spring wouldn't you sabotage poor people education). Just because we wouldn't doesn't mean a corrupt or selfish person wouldn't

  35. Think you might be interested in this.  The Antiacademic Doctrine: Introduction  Something I started independently about 17 years ago.

  36. What if we close all the schools and universities at once? Do you think that would produce negative/destructive results for the future of society? Do you think closing all the institutions for schooling would take us back to the barbaric time? What if it doesn't? We don't know when we haven't tried yet.

    I've learned everything in my life by reading books(text books and other books) all by myself and I've practiced everything I learned form those books all by myself. Schools and teachers never taught me anything; they just made my life miserable by their homework, tests, attitudes, prejudice, and pressures. Just looking at the buildings of schools (from elementary schools to high schools or any university building) they all make me feel depressed and nauseated. I don't have any good memories throughout my school years(if you did then fuck you). all the memories are just tense feeling or feeling threatened by teachers and bullies all the time, and everyday was just like being trapped in a hateful prison of completion (competition in educational challenges and social challenges). I think the origin of all social anxieties are schooling experiences that we all go through. If someone never goes to school and only home-schools by himself with the help of his/her parents he'd never develop any social anxiety an would be much more healthier mentally. In case you're wondering how can the country have scientists, doctors, engineers, etc. by home schooling? well, hospitals, factories, and all businesses can teach these knowledge and skills to those who have the right talent, intelligence, and interest. No need to build a separate building in society and name it school.
    In schools I only learned wrong and false concepts and beliefs, things like: everybody is equal, or, we all are equally intelligent and talented, or, anything and everything is possible, or, nothing is impossible, or, life is a box of chocolate (especially when you get punched in the stomach in the schoolyard by a chocolaty schoolmate), or, obey your authority figures or you'd be in trouble, or, anyone who doesn't go to school will end up being a worthless junkie, or, don't be individualistic and unique; try to be always a replica of everybody else, or, never complain, or, you have no right to your independent thoughts, or, shut up and only repeat after us, …. etc.
    Fuck schools.

  37. To me homeschooling is the best system! Parents are the best gurus for their children. Nobody out there can teach your kids like the way you can. You know your child not some stranger at school. In school they teach kids how to be a sheep! They're not teaching them how to gain knowledge or be self made. That's why I homeschool my kids.

  38. Great video, except the question about learning at any stage might not be so good. The human mind is most fertile for education in its first 14-18 years, then diminishing returns happen. Basic skills like reading, speaking, numeracy etc. are best learned early on

  39. I felt that high school is a prison when I was in high school. But I want to come back to high school student if I can do that. I agree that the school as we know it today started as a way to produce obedient and loyal subjects, soldiers, and workers. However, School contribute not only education but also sociality. I think shool is a important place in the world.

  40. In the past, as a young student, I often tried to really understand and appreciate the subjects that I learned. What I did learn though is that the system doesn't care much for this. It's just learning and memorizing at the most superficial level and regurgitating what you've been taught to parrot. So two possibilities exist. Either you're extremely smart and could have learned all those things in depth on your own or you're an average student who has learned not to understand what you're taught and instead just cram stuff you intend to forget.

  41. Education has always been directed by a guiding philosophy. Those who found a community would be foolish to be neutral in allowing philosophies or practices that they do not support. As an example: Think of what would happen if youtube did not set the parameters or guidelines for interacting with the youtube community. Everyone who educates has a goal of coloring their instruction with their specific worldview. See my videos for example:

  42. While our school system does have many problems, this video doesnt suggest anything better. We need a system to educate kids, make them learn to read and write, give them basic math skills.
    A person is always free to study what he wants, and after he finishes school (usually around 18) you are free to do what ever you want and to contiue study any subject you want.

  43. One of the few videos that I agree with Learn Liberty. It's similar to Sir Ken Robinson's TED video How Schools Kill Creativity.

  44. I'm an urban high educator, I agree to some of the points in the video. I would add that with students being over tested they are lacking the ability for critical thinking.

  45. Mehn I have saying this thing to ages, everyone just looks at me like duuuuhhh. Education is not the same as school. Look at monks in the mountains in Tibet. They one the most educated people ever. What school did the dalailama go to

  46. what i learned in school:

    how to memorise a bunch of useless information ill never need to get a grade
    to deal with idiot students
    to deal with idiot teachers
    to deal with drama

    literally… all i learned but anyways yes i think school should only teach basics of maths and english (which you do before middle school XD) But we could do online course work where you get projects or work experience and are graded through actually trying the work and until you understand over 90 percent of that stage of the work then you can go into the next stage (like for example for doctors learning about the organs and ish first can be called stage one when they are done stage 2 when they complete that they keep on going up the "stages" until they complete it and can start working as a doctor) i think it be alot easier 😛 but if it was for something like the arts or something then maybe that could be different and be done online but idk XD

  47. I have chemistry finals in a month and i dont know why should i even be memorizing lab preparation of chloroform or diethyl ether. Even if i become a scientist or whatever job i do i dont need to know how to make those stuff especially when its written in the book that they dont even use these chemicals anymore people just buy those stuff.

  48. We're are taught to get good grades, but I ask you why? The response I would get is "Oh to go to a good college" . But then I ask why do we need to go to a good college? The respond I would get is "To get a lot of money". Then I question that because is that all there is. We sacrifice so much just to get a lot of money and even if we did, that wouldn't even solve most of our problems. That is a very limited view about life because life is more than just that. I know that we all want to accumulate wealth, but not being truly educated and becoming rich is dangerous. We need to learn how to be passionate about learning again.
    Secondly, The system of education rewards high gpa's, but the system of life rewards tenacity, rewards the urge to tackle something you've never seen before. This is what most successful people have done because if you look at people like Michael Dell or Bill Gates, there success is not measured by a test or an exam. Just because you fail a test doesn't mean you are screwed for life. Look at the successful people in this world and an attribute that all of them have in common is that they are thinking in ways that you have yet to think. They are thinking in about things that no one has seen before. They came out of the box that the school system has put on them and they thought about Tomorrow.
    I ask you what do you think is the true education of your. Remember this that a formal education can make you a living but self education can make you a fortune.

  49. Look at paul Harvey "if I were the devil" video it tells a lot. Even though, society was and always will be fucked up. That Paul harveys video is just…… Damn……… speechless right now……

  50. Schools are going in the right direction, though. Give them more time. I hate that you need to get such varied courses for an advanced HS diploma (4 science, 4 math, 4 SS courses, 4 English, 1 fine art/career/tech). Seriously? If I'm sure I want to do X, why do I need to take prep for Y, Z, A, and Q?

    But they're changing things. My senior year schedule (I'm interested in international relations): US Gov, Human Geography, AP German, Statistics, Geosystems (earth science – need a 4th sci credit)… There's hope.

    1) They should start specializing maths earlier than in late HS (after Alg 2, give choice to take stat, (pre)calc, etc.)

    2) Make one "science orientation" course where you learn in one or two years all the basics of each discipline like they want right now.

  51. I agree with your point for the most part but teaching kids when they're kids makes sense because they're not able to be of much use to anybody till later. And a lot of physiological and neurological development happens on a pretty reliable schedule for most. Though I agree that we should be more open to allowing kids to proceed at different paces if they show that they can.

  52. as has been mentioned, many of us know that there is a problem and many know what out is, but what system would be best to replace it?

  53. They may not be the same thing, but getting rid of structure is not a good idea. There are many things I think should be changed. For example, I don't think schooling should be mandatory or even encouraged except for specialization past the age of 14-15. This video, however, doesn't offer any solutions, just bad advice. Structure is good. We do educate ourselves largely to be good and productive workers because that's how we live and thrive.

  54. Education is where you learn new things and build up your intellect. School is where you are lectured for hours a day, do sh*tloads of work, memorize tons of useless facts, and go through rigorous and aggressive testing to get grades to determine your intelligence and abilities.

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