Month: August 2008

Those who can, Do. Those who can’t, Teach. Those who really suck, Rule the world.

I’ve always wondered about the adage “Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach.” While any generality will be incorrect for certain people. (For example, I personally believe I’m one of those who can, given my background in private industry) But what about the majority of teachers? Is there any evidence to truly suggest that this concept that teachers are not as good as those who go into other industries or majors?

Unfortunately, I think I found some. I am going to enter a masters program this coming year, and so I have decided to take the GRE test (even though the masters programs I’m looking in to don’t require it, specifically I think it could boost my chances with Drexel. I’ll talk more soon about my speculation about why they don’t require it.)

The GRE is used for many schools to determine admission into various masters programs. And while there can be arguments made about how well (or how poorly) it measures ones potential of success, it still is a benchmark that is used, and I’m sure has some merit.

What I found interesting, is in the math (quantitative analysis) part of the test, about 2/3 of the general group that takes the test score better than Educational majors.

But, when it comes to managers, it is mostly worse. For those majoring in Management for private industry about 60% of others did better, for those majoring in School Administration, about 69% of others did better, and for public administration it sunk to having about 71% of others doing better… So maybe the Peter Principle has some merit also!!!

Although, to be fair teachers and administrators do fair better on the English (Verbal Reasoning) portion of the test. On this part only 55% of everyone else did better than Teachers. Although in this case about 60% did better than private industry managers, about 62% did better than school administrators, and only about 55% of others did better than our public administrators… So, I guess in this case, our public servants, like our former President Clinton, are cunning linguists. 🙂

Oh well. I hope that I score well on the test to show that not all teachers “can’t”, otherwise my next post will need to be refuting this post, and telling you why the GRE is not a good gauge of why someone can or can’t… 🙂

BTW, I’m interested in anyone’s feedback about other objective methods that either show our teachers and public servants are more or less capable.

P.S. – To be fair to the MBAs of the world, most of them don’t take the GRE, they take the GMAT, and you really can’t compare them together, so private industry managers may not be as bad as I list here.