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Why is English Mandatory?

A photo of JimmyChung46 JimmyChung46
So by that logic, why do people going into arts or law have to take mandatory math and science courses? Almost no one will ever use what they learned in math or science. I'm going into engineering but I love taking English and reading Shakespeare. It's a good break from the soulless subjects like math and science. English has taught me to think critically in ways I never even thought about. It's about getting a well rounded education.
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A photo of RedBee RedBee
So by that logic, why do people going into arts or law have to take mandatory math and science courses? Almost no one will ever use what they learned in math or science. I'm going into engineering but I love taking English and reading Shakespeare. It's a good break from the soulless subjects like math and science. English has taught me to think critically in ways I never even thought about. It's about getting a well rounded education.
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A photo of Masterswag420 Masterswag420

@JimmyChung46 wrote
I understand that we need to learn how to write with good grammar, vocabulary or even how to structure a paragraph. But how is Shakespeare or poetry useful for let's say a engineering student? I think the Teacher's Unions force us to take English to raise the demand for English teachers. If it was not mandatory, less students would take it and thus many english teachers would lose jobs.


lol what?
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A photo of nutritionrunner nutritionrunner
As an engineer, if you can't write decent reports, you aren't going to remain employed for long. If you don't know how to properly structure and write documents, you won't remain employed for long. If you aren't capable of analyzing what others have written, you aren't going to be employed for long either.
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A photo of Razear Razear
Reading and writing is fundamental and applicable to all disciplines/fields/majors, that's why. Yes, even engineers need to be somewhat literate.
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A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
The OP even said that he understands the need for writing skills; he's questioning the need for being able to analyze poetry and Shakespeare. I too think it's pretty unnecessary, but so is a lot of what you take in school. Most people need only grade 5 level math. Most people don't use and are incapable of using grade 9 level French. While there's a lot of overkill; there's also a lot that is definitely not covered enough. Personal finance and healthy living, for example. And the overkill is entirely related to content, not to skills. Useful skills like being able to critically assess nutrition claims (e.g. eating this fruit has been shown to improve health - how has it been shown? observational study? is it just a correlation? etc...), present a lesson to your peers, edit another person's work to reduce verbiage, how to make a strong argument, and so on are all forgotten in favour of more content.
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A photo of JimmyChung46 JimmyChung46
I agree that math and science is not useful for liberal arts majors...so therefore math and science should not be mandatory . Students now don't know a thing about managing their money or current events. Maybe we should have mandatory courses on those topics instead. I also agree that we should have a well rounded education, however I think that elementary school covering all subjects areas was sufficient and it should end in high school.
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A photo of JimmyChung46 JimmyChung46
My argument is that no mandatory courses should be required in high school
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A photo of siekat siekat
The mandatory courses aren't much for utility, but rather to give exposure to possible paths and to "see if you'll like it," to give a sense of direction before gradually branching off in later years. different from some azn countries, where everyone has to take the same core courses. Mom said back in the day, she had to write a physics entrance exam (they chose a subject every year) in order to be accepted to Uni as an English major lol

Struggled in grade 12 english, until I had "hallelujah" moment when my teacher went off on a rant that what she was looking for was the strong ability to make connections between literature, current news, articles, movies and personal experiences by analyzing and finding the universal themes and ideas that they share, deciphering what they are ultimately "trying to say" to the world.
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A photo of supehr supehr
It teaches you to think in different perspectives. Helps you figure out the deeper meanings in things. If you go into english class with the 'not important so not going to learn it' attitude, it will be a total waste of time. Learn to learn.
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A photo of Anonymous Anonymous
english is mandatory, but i think there should be less emphasis on shakespeare and plays in general

the system today is analogous to students in 2400 studying english from the lyrics of andrew lloyd webber's phantom of the opera or cats.

in my high school days english class meant making and donning props and memorizing lines to make 'presentations' of a theatrical nature. english class might've as well been drama class. there was not enough emphasis on how to write effectively or make good arguments. didn't learn anything practical in high school english, that had to wait until uni

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A photo of Razear Razear

@Xiaohaha wrote
in my high school days english class meant making and donning props and memorizing lines to make 'presentations' of a theatrical nature. english class might've as well been drama class. there was not enough emphasis on how to write effectively or make good arguments. didn't learn anything practical in high school english, that had to wait until uni



lol if you think that's bad, I remember when we had to make our own board games in groups in my grade 12 econ class.
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