Monday, April 18, 2011


The typical American adolescent's attitude toward high school or college is no more favorable than that of the elementary school child. However, the adolescent realizes that education is a means to an end, both socially and vocationally. He has, according to Joseph, a "begrudging respect for education coming from external, societal pressures rather than internal regard".

Forced by external pressures to recognize the value of education, the adolescent is willing to make sacrifices n time and effort to earn good grades. If he is motivated to move up the social ladder, he will be willing to work hard at his courses of study and to participate in extracurricular activities. This does not mean that he has suddenly develop a gung-ho-attitude toward school. The young adolescent complains about school in general, about the restrictions school places on him, the homework he must do, the courses he is required to take, the way the school authorities run things, and the way his teacher teach.

Much the same holds true for college students. They want what college can give them both socially and vocationally. But, for many, the means to the desired end can be a long and unsatisfying period of forced labor. Like the child who thinks of the last day of school before vacation as a "red-letter day," so the college student often feels that he is at last gaining his freedom when his degree is conferred upon him.

Reasons for attitude deterioration-
                                                       If an adolescent enters high school or college with an unrealistic concept, believing that he is going to have nothing but good times, he is in for a rude awakening. communities provide so many fun things for young people to do that schools and colleges cannot hope to compete with them as a source of entertainment. Mathematics, for example, cannot compete with a Western or a love story on TV, nor can Latin or ancient history compete with a date in the family's new car. The curriculum of the  high school and college often seems so pedantic, old-fashioned, and the irrelevant to the real world that students rebel at the thought of wasting their time on something they claim will never do them any good and will never be used in their daily lives.

Even subjects that they can see some practical use for may be taught in a way that seems so boring that students feel they are wasting time that might better be spent on something that would be more interesting. When it is the thing to do to grumble and criticize everything and everyone connected with a school or college, the morale of any educational institution can sink to such a low level that it will reinforce already-existing unfavorable attitudes.

The leading cause of the deterioration in student's attitudes toward education is the constant reminder, through grades and teacher comments, of academic and personal shortcomings. The day in, day out pressure to perform well and the necessity of competing make schoolwork a "drag" for most students a good deal of the time.

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