I agree with the conclusion Dara Lind reached in her article “Self-Defeating Academia” (9/8) published yesterday. Yale’s science requirement can have the unintended consequence of grouping non-majors together in uninspiring “gut” classes. However, I believe that the task of improving the situation lies in the hands of students, not the Yale administration.
Lind points out that the science requirement can force students to choose between two unattractive options. The first is to work disproportionately hard in a “real” science class alongside science majors, and the second is to take a gut course in which most of the students have little to no interest in the material (but at least a good grade can be secured with little effort). I think that students should give the first option a closer look. Yes, one’s grades might suffer by taking a challenging course outside of one’s comfort zone, but it seems self-defeating to make his course selection contingent on easy A’s. And if a student does not have enough of an interest in any scientific subject to make the effort seem worthwhile, then I don’t think that Yale is to blame.
Senior in Pierson College