Essay:Academic Side Effects

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A "side effect" is an undesirable by-product. The term is often used in connection with medication, but it can apply equally well to academic or mental pursuits:

Contents

Politics and Government

Advantages include:

  • a recognition of the impact of politics and government on culture, morality, and even faith

Side effects include:

  • a tendency to accept and even embrace the illogical and even things that cause a great deal of harm
  • a tendency to become obsessed with the media, or what other (often less intelligent) people are saying
  • an acceptance of unproductive and even counterproductive behavior
  • an embrace of, and even delight in, deceit

Engineering

Advantages include:

  • acceptance of full accountability
  • rejection of deceit
  • recognition of the value of redundancy to guard against failure

Side effects include:

  • overemphasis on materialism
  • unwillingness to get involved politically

Mathematics

Advantages include:

  • acceptance of logic

Disadvantages include:

  • lack of meaningful accountability
  • lack of recognition of the adversarial nature of life

Law

Advantages include:

  • Appreciation of the value of dissent

Disadvantages include:

  • Lack of appreciation of limits on judicial authority

History

Advantages include:

  • Recognize the historical progression towards greater Christianity and conservatism, and the ever-changing competitors to both

Disadvantages include:

  • Under-appreciation of logic, and how not all beliefs are equal
  • Preoccupation with status and positions, rather than achievement
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