Universities should require every student to take a variety of courses outside the student’s field of study.

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  • ww107
    University: Chengdu
    Nationality: China
    October 27, 2020 at 2:44 am

    Universities should require every student to take a variety of courses outside the student’s field of study.

    I cannot agree with the argument that in universities every student should be required to take a variety of courses outside the major field of their study. While it is beneficial for the students to take certain courses outside their major field, the number and variety should not exceed certain limits and this should not be mandatory for every student. As I see it, university students should focus on their major courses while being given the freedom to pursue whatever courses they are interested in.

    What we are discussing is university study rather than high school or middle school. In high school students are required to take a wide variety of basic courses such as mathematics, language, physics, chemistry, etc. When students get into university it is time for them to start to focus on the major they have chosen. After all, it should be noted that there are so many courses to take in a specific major and the study is very taxing already. For instance, if we take a look at the major of economics we can see that students are required to study advanced calculus, probability theory, linear algebra, microeconomics, macroeconomics, econometrics, etc. The list is already is very long. If students are required further to take a wide range of courses outside economics field it can be imagined how heavy the burden on students’ shoulder can be.

    That being said, I am not asserting that university students should focus exclusively on the courses related to their major and courses outside are totally useless. Some argue that various courses can help students avoid becoming parochial. For instance, for economics students certain knowledge of advanced physics will help them achieve a better understanding of how the economy works as the way that economy functions has some resemblance to the way the physical world runs.

    I fully agree with this kind of viewpoint. Indeed, knowledge of different disciplines can be stimulating and beneficial. Students should not get themselves stuck in one isolated field blindly. It is crucial to keep updated with the basic knowledge as well as latest development of other disciplines. What I am opposing is that students should not be required to take too many such courses as suggested by the given statement. They should be endowed with the freedom to choose whatever course they like. If they have interest and free time, they should be enabled to take as many courses outside their major as they like. It is true that those great minds in human history do not always study the subject to which they later make a great contribution to. For example, the great British economist Keynes studied mathematics during his undergraduate study in Cambridge. And he became one of the greatest economists in the end. I am sure the study of mathematics has exerted a significant and positive influence on his latter career as an economist.

    To summarise, it is erroneous to require every student to take a variety of courses outside their major considering the sheer burden they already have in their major study. Meanwhile, however, students should be given the opportunity and freedom to take whatever course they are interested in. While the given statement points out the importance of the variety of courses in students’ study, it puts excessive emphasis on it. Thus, I cannot agree with it.

    October 27, 2020 at 8:33 pm

    Score: ungraded


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    October 27, 2020 at 8:35 pm

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