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EXECUTION Lex DeVille's - Journey To Disillusionment

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Andy Black

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Research design is rough. I'm hanging in there thanks to an F-ton of reading. A couple days ago the instructor sent an email:

View attachment 33972

Pretty cool getting a note like that. This is one of the harder classes I've taken and the instructor has high standards. I also got invited to another honor society. That email came through this morning.

View attachment 33973

There's another honor society, the Sigma Nu Tau entrepreneur society, which I'm not eligible for because I'm not enrolled in a business program haha.

One benefit of joining honor societies is the potential for scholarship access. Although, I may not be eligible for scholarships based on the color of my skin these days.

In total, I have four classes left before I finish the Master's (or whatever woke term we're using).

I'm starting to think about how I'll use the M.A. in business. An M.A. isn't the end goal, but it's still a valuable credibility marker. Looking forward to entering the doctoral program.

Sadly, I fear I'll earn that PhD only to be stripped of it at some future point due to perceived inequality between people who earn degrees and society's dredges. This will likely be the catalyst that propels me fully into a supervillain identity where the only path left is to carry out plans for world domination.
Well done @Lex DeVille. It’s easy getting on the radar of the powers to be: help them help their audience/market/customers/etc. Better yet, be *seen* to help them. Super easy. I don’t know why more people don’t do it.

Meh to academia. You can’t join an entrepreneur society because you’re not taking a business class? What kind of weird thinking is that? Seriously, their loss, and they don’t even know how much they’re missing out.

I say go for super villainy world domination at the same time.
 

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Well done @Lex DeVille. It’s easy getting on the radar of the powers to be: help them help their audience/market/customers/etc. Better yet, be *seen* to help them. Super easy. I don’t know why more people don’t do it.

Meh to academia. You can’t join an entrepreneur society because you’re not taking a business class? What kind of weird thinking is that? Seriously, their loss, and they don’t even know how much they’re missing out.

I say go for super villainy world domination at the same time.
I find this weird as well.
In my university, you could join any club you wanted, regardless of your department.
And certain business units like Social Entrepreneurship and Experiential Learning (in my university) also allowed non-business students to take them.

In my investment club, there were folks from business, health sciences, IT...no red tape for participation.

A few clubs even offered membership cards that enabled you to get discounts from nearby eateries and outlets, but I never used them.
 

Lex DeVille

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I've got several updates since the last time I wrote.

Research Design is Actually Interesting
The more I read, the more apparent it becomes that it is extremely easy for unscrupulous researchers funded by interested parties to manipulate data in support of different positions.

The general public is too lazy to read research studies. Some people read the studies, but they face complicated long-form scientific jargon which is difficult for the average reader to decipher.

Assuming they make their way through the jargon, they then face statistics that require strong mathematical skills to interpret.

Even if someone made it through all of that, there would be other matters to consider, including the research model and design, sampling method, data analysis, and even questions, thoughts and ideas that are misleading, or have been overlooked on purpose or left out for other reasons.

In other words, you need to be an expert at critiquing research to really know if any given research provides valid results or presents useful evidence to support some theory or hypothesis.

The Struggle for an A
I'm hanging in there with Research Design. The instructor said several are failing the class. Apparently, I'm 1 of 3 people with an A. There are only two weeks left.

This class has sparked an interest in going deeper with critiquing methods. I reached out to three past instructors and my current instructor for resources. All responded. Some with better resources than others.

Asking for resources serves multiple purposes. First, asking for small favors is an established persuasive technique. Second, asking for resources shows I care about the field. Third, it keeps my name in front of important instructors who may offer letters of recommendation later on.

Doctoral Path
My path changes weekly it seems. I've come up with numerous reasons why Ashford's PSYD program is the best option for me. The one reason I challenge that position is the future ramifications of earning a doctoral degree through a completely online school.

Assuming I critique the work of others, which may include challenging their credibility, it would be easy for others to challenge my credibility based on a doctoral degree from a non-traditional, non-GRE, non-APA-accredited (although regionally accredited) school.

So I'm reflecting on this now. Maybe I should reconsider taking the GRE and applying to more reputable schools. Drawbacks to this are potentially extending the time it takes to earn a degree, as well as increasing the overall weekly time-commitment. One benefit is the degree may be paid for completely, so there's that.
 

Lex DeVille

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Research & Design
I finished Research and Design and maintained an A. I reached out to the instructor with a thank you message after the course was over. She seemed to appreciate the thought and noted that most students send hate mail (due to failing the class).

Psychological Testing & Assessment
I'm entering the third week of Psychological Testing and Assessment. So far the class is going well. The subject matter is interesting and complex, but I'm doing fine. Last week we had to create a children's picture book as an assignment. Oddly enough, I have experience in that area which came in handy.

University Conversion
Apparently Ashford was purchased by the University of Arizona and is in the process of being converted from a for-profit to a non-profit school. This news came out of nowhere, but it's welcome. I would much rather have a degree from the University of Arizona than Ashford. It adds a great deal of credibility.

GRE Back On
I don't know if I'll switch schools for the doctoral program, but I decided to take the GRE anyway. At least that will open my options. I purchased Magoosh membership and will study over 3 months before testing. That way it's not too far out, and also will be done before it's time to apply for PhD programs in December-January. Probably the biggest complaint with Ashford is the no-GRE entrance. Without a GRE requirement, the quality of the average student is low.

Clinical Psychology
Since I'm taking the GRE, I will probably apply to a few clinical psychology programs. I'm still not sure that's the path I want to take, but I'd like to keep options open there as well. Several sources have stated that Clinical Psychology is the most competitive degree path in existence, more so than medical or law school. I think I can get in.

3 Courses to Go.
 

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A good read Lex, and congrats on taking this on with the intentions of being number 1. Good on you for doing exactly what the f*ck you want to do even if some on here don't agree with it. Go forth and prosper!
 

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Congrats, man. It's rewarding academically, and since you don't want to make this your career, good for you.

Economically, the only benefits I got out of my PhD so far are:

- people of the older generation look at you in a completely different light, to them, being a "doctor" means something.

- Need a doctor's appointment or are in the hospital? They automatically assume you are a medical doctor, you have no waiting time, and they'll double check your case because they don't want to get sued.

- Ran into the police again? There's one thing cops understand, and that's rank. It's really interesting to see them treating you as a common peasant and the different way they treat you after they checked your ID. Probably also because they know that it is actually a misdemeanor in Germany to not address someone with a PhD as "Doctor". To their defense: Given my appearance in non-professional contexts, I, as a cop, would probably assume worse things about me, too.

- And, of course, I now have the right to apply for all public research funds. But when you're not employed at the university, there isn't much chance they'll be granted.
 

Lex DeVille

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With October here, I'm reaching the completion of the Master's program. I still have a 4.0 GPA. I'm in Psychopathology now and have Counseling Psychology next. After that I have a capstone to wrap everything up and then I graduate. At this point I find myself reflecting on several things I hadn't considered prior to beginning this journey.

1. The American Psychological Association (APA) is bullshit.
I joined the APA as a student member nearly a year ago. When I joined and paid my dues, I didn't gain access as a member for more than a month despite numerous contact attempts by phone and email. APA representatives were unresponsive and when they finally did respond, they didn't follow up afterward and didn't respond to my attempts at follow-up. What's worse is that when I finally did get access, that's when the real problems began. Before I continue, it is worth noting that I do not claim a political stance. Not left, right or any other.

Over the past year, the APA has bombarded me with left-wing spam and third-party courses and products. They've pushed one-sided narratives while hounding me about ethics or to buy things. They do not accredit schools with online counseling programs, yet they've pushed teletherapy for the past six months as the "new norm." They've also shoved BLM and related agendas down my throat almost every day and regardless of how I feel about any of these agendas, it is the pushing of an agenda by a supposedly unbiased organization that bothers me. So I will not be renewing my APA membership when it expires.

2. Therapy is bullshit
Having seen multiple therapists and counselors, I have a new perspective on what therapy and counseling are good for. First, if you have a serious mental illness, then therapy may have positive results in your life. Second, if you are the kind of person who needs to hear your thoughts reflected back to you, then a therapist could prove useful, but so could an accountability partner, life coach, or even just a friend and all probably at a lower price than a therapist. If you are a critical thinker, problem-solver, and action-taker then you will be disappointed by therapy when you realize that therapists are quick to diagnose, offer generalized solutions, and even the specialists cannot do the work to solve your problems for you.

The time and money spent on therapy could just as easily be spent on your business or other parts of life where you will get direct feedback instead of a paid opinion or reflections. Therapy, with few exceptions, is for people who don't want to do the hard work they know they have to do to make shit the way they want it in life. It is for people who are looking for excuses or ways out or to be able to say "I tried but things just didn't work out." I say this as someone who recently realized I was doing this exact thing, looking for excuses and ways out.

3. Psychology as a Field is Bullshit
At this point, I can barely take the field of psychology seriously. The APA has an agenda. College psych programs push that agenda plus the traditional scripted path. Therapists and counselors make hack diagnoses based on single-encounters and then turn those over to doctors for prescription therapy. U.S. based psychological journals and publications are full of shitty research by people just looking to be published for credibility rather than the forward progression of psychological science. Also, feminism runs rampant within the APA and the greater field of psychology as a whole. Authors openly proclaim their feminist background in the beginning of course texts, and you can practically feel the man-hate seething through their words. The APA has even taken a stance against masculinity stating that traditional masculinity can lead to mental health issues among other problems. In other words, don't be a man because men = bad.

So what the f*ck?!

I don't even want to be a Doctor of Psychology anymore. At this point, it means nothing unless I specifically desired to work with patients with mental illnesses (which I don't). There is no reason to walk this path further because even the credibility gained from holding a PSYD or Ph.D. in Psychology is bullshit. I've learned enough about psychology that I no longer feel a desire to study it as a college student. Colleges don't cover the areas I want to study anyway (for instance, there is no specialization in Cult Psychology).

I'll be glad to have an advanced degree, but I no longer know if I'll pursue anything further in this direction. I could choose a degree in another field, but I would hate to make such a big commitment only to later discover similar issues.

For now, I'll focus on finishing the Master's degree and being the best at it. After that, I don't know. I'll be thinking about my path forward and where I go from here. Right now I seriously doubt I'll continue onward through the PSYD program. There are better ways I can spend my time than being told I need to wear a mask and social distance while providing teletherapy and voting for Biden or else I'm a racist man pig who should be lit on fire, canceled, and have his degrees rescinded.

Can't Hurt Me
David Goggin's book has proved 110 X more effective in my own therapeutic needs than therapy at a fraction of the cost. Get the audiobook version because it has extra commentary (trigger warning: it's full of traditional masculinity and ideas that the APA would probably frown upon).
 
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Thank you for sharing your experience of how it works behind the scenes. Sounds like it's not about helping people but indoctrinating them.
Get the audiobook version because it has extra commentary
What's the extra commentary about?
 

Lex DeVille

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Thank you for sharing your experience of how it works behind the scenes. Sounds like it's not about helping people but indoctrinating them.

What's the extra commentary about?

The extra commentary is between Goggins himself and the narrator (I'm not sure what their relationship is outside of the book but they seem to know one another well).

During the book, the narrator pauses from time to time to ask Goggins questions and to let him expand on topics within the chapter. So you don't just get the written version read aloud, but you get additional thoughts from Goggins about how he came to certain conclusions or formed ideas. It's done throughout the entirety of the book.

It's kind of like combining a podcast episode with an audiobook.
 

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Great thread dude. Keep going.

I guess maybe look at what Jordan Peterson does and do like him? I mean I heard him talking about meeting many patients in one of his lectures, if that's what you'd like to do.
 

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membership when it expires.

2. Therapy is bullshit


3. Psychology as a Field is Bullshit

At this point, I can barely take the field of psychology seriously. Authors openly proclaim their feminist background in the beginning of course texts, and you can practically feel the man-hate seething through their words. The APA has even taken a stance against masculinity stating that traditional masculinity can lead to mental health issues among other problems. In other words, don't be a man because men = bad.

So what the f*ck?!

I don't even want to be a Doctor of Psychology anymore


Good you've figured that out so soon. My best friend is currently in training as a psychotherapist. Funnily enough, we both agree that psychotherapy is bullshit to a large degree. For him, it's just the most comfortable option after studying psychology.

I've worked in psychiatry as an art therapist for a while. Actually, I nearly became a psychoanalyst. I shared a flat with two psychologists while working at uni. My father was a psychiatrist. My ex was a psychiatrist. The ex before that a psychologist and psychiatrist. So I know a little about the field.

Psychotherapy can't prove any great effects, anyway, and if we take away publication bias, the result would probably even be more bitter.

The only thing psychotherapy leads to far too often, if you ask me, is that people are even encouraged to identify with their problems, which gives them something to attach to, then they can put it in their Twitter bio or post stupid WhatsApp status updates to keep everyone informed that they're soooo special and need "treatment", which, of course, is "special treatment".

And psychology, as a discipline at the moment, is heavily biased against men. I guess there are two reasons for this: You need good grades to get into it, and females do better in school (which is again because of gender bias, because most teachers are women), and the idiotic third-wave feminism ruining universities, freedom of research and teaching, and a whole generation for more than a decade, now.

Over the last years, I've also noticed a lot more pathologizing when it came to ex-boyfriends, for example. No woman's ex-boyfriend was an "a**hole" anymore, or there were just "problems that couldn't be overcome". Nonono! Every woman insists that she has suffered at the hands of a malignant narcissist (just use YouTube search for "my relationship with a narcissist"), psychopath or gaslighter.

On the other hand, far too willing female psychotherapists tell their clients that their own issues are harmless or even just symptoms of their great traits. I used to date a girl that was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. She just switched psychotherapists, and the next therapist told her that she was just "hypersensible". Oh, she had BPD, and really a tough one. But it didn't really take long until I learned through Facebook that declaring women with BPD "hypersensible" had become a trend. Now everyone and her mother was "hypersensible".

That's not funny. BPD is hard on the people who have it, yes. But do you have any idea how hard it is for the people around them? If you want to kiss your own mental health goodbye, that's your perfect dating option to end up with clinical depression and deeply hurt, after manipulated in ways you've never thought possible.
 

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Lex DeVille

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Good you've figured that out so soon. My best friend is currently in training as a psychotherapist. Funnily enough, we both agree that psychotherapy is bullshit to a large degree. For him, it's just the most comfortable option after studying psychology.

I've worked in psychiatry as an art therapist for a while. Actually, I nearly became a psychoanalyst. I shared a flat with two psychologists while working at uni. My father was a psychiatrist. My ex was a psychiatrist. The ex before that a psychologist and psychiatrist. So I know a little about the field.

Psychotherapy can't prove any great effects, anyway, and if we take away publication bias, the result would probably even be more bitter.

The only thing psychotherapy leads to far too often, if you ask me, is that people are even encouraged to identify with their problems, which gives them something to attach to, then they can put it in their Twitter bio or post stupid WhatsApp status updates to keep everyone informed that they're soooo special and need "treatment", which, of course, is "special treatment".

And psychology, as a discipline at the moment, is heavily biased against men. I guess there are two reasons for this: You need good grades to get into it, and females do better in school (which is again because of gender bias, because most teachers are women), and the idiotic third-wave feminism ruining universities, freedom of research and teaching, and a whole generation for more than a decade, now.

Over the last years, I've also noticed a lot more pathologizing when it came to ex-boyfriends, for example. No woman's ex-boyfriend was an "a**hole" anymore, or there were just "problems that couldn't be overcome". Nonono! Every woman insists that she has suffered at the hands of a malignant narcissist (just use YouTube search for "my relationship with a narcissist"), psychopath or gaslighter.

On the other hand, far too willing female psychotherapists tell their clients that their own issues are harmless or even just symptoms of their great traits. I used to date a girl that was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. She just switched psychotherapists, and the next therapist told her that she was just "hypersensible". Oh, she had BPD, and really a tough one. But it didn't really take long until I learned through Facebook that declaring women with BPD "hypersensible" had become a trend. Now everyone and her mother was "hypersensible".

That's not funny. BPD is hard on the people who have it, yes. But do you have any idea how hard it is for the people around them? If you want to kiss your own mental health goodbye, that's your perfect dating option to end up with clinical depression and deeply hurt, after manipulated in ways you've never thought possible.

This mimics my reflections. It's nice to see I'm not the only one thinking about this. The part about people identifying seems like a real problem, and I would agree that it is encouraged. The first time I saw a therapist, she flat out told me that if I didn't go on SSRIs I was going to kill myself. I left that session feeling more miserable than when I showed up. I wasn't suicidal and hadn't discussed being suicidal with her, yet I felt very much that way when I stepped out of that office.

Anyway, I think a large part of my disappointment with this experience comes from my expectations. I expected (or maybe just wanted) the field of psychology to be like I've always imagined it. Classy, dignified, intellectual, and full of practical insights that could be applied in the real world. A Freudian (or maybe Frasier) fantasy haha. But the best takeaways weren't found in the classroom. They came from my private studies through the school's online library where I could pick and choose texts I wanted to read.

I'm not sure a school exists that trains the practical aspects of psychology. It seems like there are basically two options. Become a researcher or become a clinician/counselor. If you want to do something else with your career, you're on your own.
 

Lex DeVille

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I've noticed a strange change across the last two classes. In previous classes, I was the first to post my discussions and assignments every week. Everyone else waited for the last possible minute. Now that we're nearing the finish line, I see people posting discussions much earlier in the week, almost as though they're competing to be the first one done. Their work is as shoddy as always, but it's like they're trying to get their names and faces recognized either by the class or by the instructor.

To test this theory of competition, I researched the previous class to see what day the earliest discussion posts were posted. They were always posted by the first day of the week (that's four days earlier than their due date).

Next, I posted my discussion well in advance to ensure I would be the first to finish. Shortly after posting it, other posts flooded in behind me.

To go a step beyond, I posted the second week's discussion a week in advance. If classmates are trying to compete, then there should be discussion posts showing up in Week Two prior to Monday. To my surprise, at least one classmate has already posted their Week Two discussion shortly after I posted mine.

So it seems now that the finish line is near, my peers' motivation to "try" has increased. What's strange is that their posts still lack substance. Despite competing to post early in the week, their posts show clear evidence that they did not read the required texts, nor did they read the assignment prompt. It's like they're posting a shell of the assignment.

What's unfortunate is that these are the people you can expect to treat you or your parents or your children at various mental health agencies around the country. They won't be found in private practice because they haven't attended an APA accredited program, and therefore, won't be eligible for licensure in most states. But they are already working in mental health clinics in various capacities.
 

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I've noticed a strange change across the last two classes. In previous classes, I was the first to post my discussions and assignments every week. Everyone else waited for the last possible minute. Now that we're nearing the finish line, I see people posting discussions much earlier in the week, almost as though they're competing to be the first one done. Their work is as shoddy as always, but it's like they're trying to get their names and faces recognized either by the class or by the instructor.

To test this theory of competition, I researched the previous class to see what day the earliest discussion posts were posted. They were always posted by the first day of the week (that's four days earlier than their due date).

Next, I posted my discussion well in advance to ensure I would be the first to finish. Shortly after posting it, other posts flooded in behind me.

To go a step beyond, I posted the second week's discussion a week in advance. If classmates are trying to compete, then there should be discussion posts showing up in Week Two prior to Monday. To my surprise, at least one classmate has already posted their Week Two discussion shortly after I posted mine.

So it seems now that the finish line is near, my peers' motivation to "try" has increased. What's strange is that their posts still lack substance. Despite competing to post early in the week, their posts show clear evidence that they did not read the required texts, nor did they read the assignment prompt. It's like they're posting a shell of the assignment.

What's unfortunate is that these are the people you can expect to treat you or your parents or your children at various mental health agencies around the country. They won't be found in private practice because they haven't attended an APA accredited program, and therefore, won't be eligible for licensure in most states. But they are already working in mental health clinics in various capacities.
I think it's because they are now thinking of currying enough favour and impressions to get the professor to write letters of recommendations for their later job hunts?

Not surprised their discussion posts end up lacking substance.
As long the folks aren't graded for critical analysis, and ONLY for participation, that's the kind of work that will come out.

Example from my OWN college group assignment:

Part of our capstone project's scope was to plan and suggest sustainability measures for an electrical product.
Naturally, you could just look up famous brands like Phillips and Panasonic, and check out their blogs or academic journals for how they reduce lithium in their batteries, reuse packaging, reduce ink by switching to monochrome printing, etc.

Plus, you had to relate the measures to specific sustainability principles like Efficiency, Sufficiency and Preventing Unjustifiable Risks.

For this entire semester, my group members pretty much screwed up our fortnightly presentations by copy-pasting crap from the textbook.

They would say stuff like: 'We can reduce carbon footprint by using energy-saving mode' (explain how???) or 'We will compensate for environmental damages by paying out money" (how much money??? Isn't that costly and a waste of $$$?)

Total garbage.

I tried at first to filter their work, give ideas and stuff before I realised it was a losing battle.
Fortunately, the presentations were quite leniently graded, but I was not kind in my peer reviews.

Unfortunately, the peer reviews rate performances of the kids from scores of 1-5 mostly based on whether they showed up, talked crap gave ideas, handed in work on time...things even a MONKEY WITH AUTISM can do.

Very little avenue to rate them based on innovation, and critical analytic skills or initiative.
No qualitative peer review options available (e.g. write an essay about your team mate's performance)

As a result, any deductions from the bad peer reviews were so tiny that the members didn't feel enough pain to start changing their ways.

I pointed that out in my end-semester feedback, but not sure if the professors will take note.
 

Lex DeVille

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I just got my wrist indirectly slapped in class. My schedule is super busy right now, and I knew the only way to keep up with course work was to post several weeks of discussions ahead of time. Now we are in Week 4 and just below my discussion post is a message from the instructor that reads:

Hi -

We are in Week 2 now. Let's stay with the class and focus on the weekly concepts. If you complete work early keep it on your computer and post when the unit opens.

Thanks!

Is this an official school policy? No. Is it in the course syllabus? No. So why the f*ck does it matter when I post my initial discussion post for the week? Other students don't post their initial posts or their responses until the final hour of the due date.

Perhaps someone complained? Maybe someone felt offended or inferior because they weren't willing to put in the time and effort to research and write a 1,500 word essay that exceeds the standards weeks ahead.

Does cancel culture apply to private college? There are two weeks left of class, and I haven't written discussion posts for those weeks yet. I'm tempted to do it and see what happens. To be honest, I'm struggling real hard not to make a nasty discussion post. I'm not so good at beating around the bush. What the f*ck has this world come to?
 
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ZF Lee

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I just got my wrist indirectly slapped in class. My schedule is super busy right now, and I knew the only way to keep up with course work was to post several weeks of discussions ahead of time. Now we are in Week 4 and just below my discussion post is a message from the instructor that reads:



Is this an official school policy? No. Is it in the course syllabus? No. So why the f*ck does it matter when I post my initial discussion post for the week? Other students don't post their initial posts or their responses until the final hour of the due date.

Perhaps someone complained? Maybe someone felt offended or inferior because they weren't willing to put in the time and effort to research and write a 1,500 word essay that exceeds the standards weeks ahead.

Does cancel culture apply to private college? There are two weeks left of class, and I haven't written discussion posts for those weeks yet. I'm tempted to do it and see what happens. To be honest, I'm struggling real hard not to make a nasty discussion post. I'm not so good at beating around the bush. What the f*ck has this world come

Normally, I'd think that the instructor just wants to keep everyone's minds on one single track, so they don't get confused by new material that doesn't match the week's content.

...which would only be fine if we were STILL in high school!

On the other hand, the instructor should be THANKFUL that you are keeping up with your posts!
The top gripe that I hear from my own lecturers now is that the kids just refuse to discuss and confer with the lecturers, preferring to hide under some rock.

And it got so bad that I've sat in Zoom classes where I was one of the only six kids present...out of a typical class size of TWO-HUNDRED kids.

But if someone did REALLY complain about the posts...well...just f*ck that snowflake.
How on earth could they even pass a lower degree if they can't fire out a 1,500-word essay?

As long as the discussion posts aren't graded in any way, yeah, go ahead and hold back on the postings.
Given that other peers have been copying your posts, you might as well send out a message as such.
 

Speed112

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In other words, you need to be an expert at critiquing research to really know if any given research provides valid results or presents useful evidence to support some theory or hypothesis.
Hey, Lex.

Love your journey through academia. Your insights mirror a lot of what I've realized through my own stint and my interactions with professors and students, save the cultural propagandizing that seems to be an American thing, at least for now.

I'd like to bring you back a bit to the idea of research design and its challenges...

Do you think research critique has potential to be a valuable niche?

As a copywriter with lots of practical experience in psychology, and probably a lot of tangential experience in many other fields (due to the nature of the job and all the research involved), one is uniquely positioned to parse through difficult topics and communicate them in a way that the intended audience better understands.

And given your observations of your fellow classmates who struggle to write 1500 word essays... Most people in academia (un)surprisingly are not.

Furthermore, the current state of scientific journalism is not just disappointing, but outright appalling, with massive politicization and even blatant misinformation. This to me signals huge NEED in the market for proper, honest, objective, interesting, and actionable scientific communication.

Did you get the same feeling while experiencing academia?

The issue is that, from what I can tell, there is a lot of incentive to be biased, with various interest groups, including states/academia authority structures themselves, their combatants, and specific industries looking for research woke points. This leads to a perceived bias even when there is none there, with all sides throwing accusations of "being funded by X" and "shilling for Y" so there is an inherent difficulty in establishing generalized authority as a communicator. Makes for an interesting barrier to entry.

I've always thought facilitating discussion and interactions between "worlds" including interdisciplinary research, but also researcher-to-consumer relations, to be a huge failure in current society... but is there market demand for such a thing? Interdisciplinary Ambassadors.

What are your thoughts on this?
 

Lex DeVille

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Hey, Lex.

Love your journey through academia. Your insights mirror a lot of what I've realized through my own stint and my interactions with professors and students, save the cultural propagandizing that seems to be an American thing, at least for now.

I'd like to bring you back a bit to the idea of research design and its challenges...

Do you think research critique has potential to be a valuable niche?

As a copywriter with lots of practical experience in psychology, and probably a lot of tangential experience in many other fields (due to the nature of the job and all the research involved), one is uniquely positioned to parse through difficult topics and communicate them in a way that the intended audience better understands.

And given your observations of your fellow classmates who struggle to write 1500 word essays... Most people in academia (un)surprisingly are not.

Furthermore, the current state of scientific journalism is not just disappointing, but outright appalling, with massive politicization and even blatant misinformation. This to me signals huge NEED in the market for proper, honest, objective, interesting, and actionable scientific communication.

Did you get the same feeling while experiencing academia?

The issue is that, from what I can tell, there is a lot of incentive to be biased, with various interest groups, including states/academia authority structures themselves, their combatants, and specific industries looking for research woke points. This leads to a perceived bias even when there is none there, with all sides throwing accusations of "being funded by X" and "shilling for Y" so there is an inherent difficulty in establishing generalized authority as a communicator. Makes for an interesting barrier to entry.

I've always thought facilitating discussion and interactions between "worlds" including interdisciplinary research, but also researcher-to-consumer relations, to be a huge failure in current society... but is there market demand for such a thing? Interdisciplinary Ambassadors.

What are your thoughts on this?

If you started a research critiquing business, how would you ensure the critiquers aren't biased? The academic journals are supposed to filter who gets published, but they have proven to be biased.

The general public doesn't understand research. They can't interpret meaning from it. Critiques would need to be simplified or else Average Joe has no way to know if the research is biased or not.

I think there's room for content creators in this space. The challenge will be distilling research into simplified concepts and delivering them in ways that hold viewer attention and come across as just the facts.

A YouTube channel or blog could do well once it gains traction.

Look at Kurzgesagt on YouTube as an example. They simplify topics and make them fun to watch. Similarly, this guy has over a million subscribers. All he does is share a once-daily news report that states facts without opinion on political topics.

If someone could break down research, explain the numbers and ideas, and do it in a way that comes across unbiased and easy to understand, then I think it would be a big hit, especially if it is low or no-cost for consumers.

You would need clear filters for bias and to make them known to the public. Repeat them again and again and follow with legit critiques by smart people and you'd have a good shot at success.
 

Jon L

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If you started a research critiquing business, how would you ensure the critiquers aren't biased? The academic journals are supposed to filter who gets published, but they have proven to be biased.

The general public doesn't understand research. They can't interpret meaning from it. Critiques would need to be simplified or else Average Joe has no way to know if the research is biased or not.

I think there's room for content creators in this space. The challenge will be distilling research into simplified concepts and delivering them in ways that hold viewer attention and come across as just the facts.

A YouTube channel or blog could do well once it gains traction.

Look at Kurzgesagt on YouTube as an example. They simplify topics and make them fun to watch. Similarly, this guy has over a million subscribers. All he does is share a once-daily news report that states facts without opinion on political topics.

If someone could break down research, explain the numbers and ideas, and do it in a way that comes across unbiased and easy to understand, then I think it would be a big hit, especially if it is low or no-cost for consumers.

You would need clear filters for bias and to make them known to the public. Repeat them again and again and follow with legit critiques by smart people and you'd have a good shot at success.
What's worse is that the general public only hears about research when its reported in the newspaper. Journalists aren't good at reading the research to begin with, but when they add their own biases to the mix, things turn into a mess.

I majored in psychology as an undergrad. I remember one of my professors talking about some study that, to me, was clearly and deeply flawed. I brought it up, and he said, 'yeah that is one of the arguments against this research,' and then went on talking about how great the paper was. That was a bit of an eye opener.
 

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