Recently on a stream, I was asked whether I thought someone should get a degree in cybersecurity, or straight computer science if they were interested in a career in tech. This question is both nuanced and critical, so I felt it deserved more than an off-the-cuff attempt live on air. I don't pretend to have the answer that makes sense for everyone, but I would like to provide a few points to consider for all who might be facing this exact question.
Stop me if you've heard this one: an okay, not-great, semi-engaged student is called out by teachers by not "working to potential." Except that kid, in their spare time, is doing amazing things in whatever area they have a passion for. Truly incredible output, whether it be music, video, skating, or, yes, technology. But of course, that's not what the classroom gives a crap about, so the school thinks of the student as average.
I was that kid, and I bet more than a few of you were as well.
Time to drop a little education theory. We're going to start off with Lev Vygotsky, a theorist every licensed teacher learns about in their graduate courses. Lev, like most well-known ed theorists, was primarily focused on childhood development. Nevertheless, his insights into how learning works in the human mind can be valuable for learners of any age.
I would like to tell you this post is not inspired by Bean Dad. That's mostly true, although I'd be lying if I said he wasn't the inciting incident that made me tear down my website and rebuild it as a blog, finally moving off Medium. Anyway, welcome. Have a seat. We have some work to do.