Some thoughts on education

What surprises me the most in the education field is that people think of education as something different as learning. While it should be related in the same way, most people look at education like something you do once, and you’re done. But it’s far from that. To paraphrase something I read (I don’t remember the source), education and diplomas have to be earned every day. It means that education is a process that lasts forever.
From time to time people ask me for advice on what to do with their careers. They don’t know what they should do to level up. Within that group of people that ask me for advice, some of them have an ingrained idea where the point of studying a master or something similar is to get the certification. They put aside the learning process. For them, all that matters is the title they’ll earn after a couple of years of exams, so they can land on better job.
Inevitably, there’s an argument here that leads us to the question of… What is university about? And that’s a hell of a question.
There are certain fields that requires having a degree. For example if you go to the hospital you’d like to have a graduated doctor, right? Nonetheless, with fields like marketing and other social sciences answering that question can be more complicated.
I think university is good to learn how to learn. That’s the whole point. So when education is not linked with the learning process, we’ve got a problem.
If you know how to learn, do you really need to go to college? Or go for a master? I doubt it.
Some people try to justify their Masters affirming that it’s a good way to “network”. Well, I think that’s an expensive way to do networking—specially in countries like the US where education leaves students with huge debts.
I believe that there are other ways to learn better than doing a master. As well as other ways to do “networking”.
I also believe that masters that only teach raw materials are a waste of money. Information is free. And it’d be foolish to sign up for a master just to force the learning process.
What I always answer to the people that ask me for advice is that, if they want to learn “x”, they don’t have to waste their money, so they can buy a bunch of books on the topic and do the hard work.
PS There are other sort of masters that focus on soft skills—like the AltMBA. Even though I haven’t done any of those, I think that’s a better way to invest your money.