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View Poll Results: What is the highest level of education you have completed?
Less than High School 7 3.17%
High School 32 14.48%
Associates 26 11.76%
Bachelor's 74 33.48%
Masters 64 28.96%
PhD 18 8.14%
Voters: 221. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-03-2011, 08:46 AM   #16
OneandonlyDoc
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Reading what I wanted to read actually got me into trouble in quite a few English classes (I was a very stubborn child when I was going through secondary school). I often found myself reading things totally divergent from the texts I was assigned, simply because those types of texts did not interest me in the slightest.

As a corollary to this poll, I wonder if there are certain degree fields that make you more apt to be a reader (or just prevent you from being a pleasure reader due to time constraints). I know while I was studying for my MA in history, especially while I was writing my thesis, it was difficult for me to find the time to read for pleasure.
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Old 08-03-2011, 09:25 AM   #17
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I selected "Less than Highschool". I left school in the middle of my first year of highschool.

I've been an voracious reader since I was 3. Always had a book under my nose. Unfortunately I didn't have a very good childhood and it sparked a lot of mental issues. I was completely incapable of sitting in a classroom. Sometimes I was too scared to leave the house. Still am sometimes.

I've always read above my grade level. I read everything from legal thrillers to horrors to historical fiction and fantasy. I read at least 2 hours everyday and that will never change. I think I've learned a lot from reading over the years about history and legal systems and various other things that I've done research on because I found the subject in a book I was reading at the time. I've been hired at 2 jobs in the past that required a college degree and I didn't have any problem doing the work that was required of me. I went from being an impound lot officer to an office administrator/controller, which is what I'm doing now.

My husband has a degree and he's never read a book in his life. Same with my ex. My mother has a college degree and she doesn't read. Yet the woman I work with has about as much education as I do and she reads all the time.
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Old 08-03-2011, 09:43 AM   #18
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Yes, the degrees, especially doctorates, are very misleading. For example, I have one daughter with a J.D. which she obtained in 3 years following college (U.S.). My other daughter is married to a Navy physician who is still "in school" having obtained his M.D. in 4 years, board-certified in Ob-Gyn, then his specialty in Gyn-Oncology in 6 additional years of specialty fellowship which is nearly finished.

In my case, I was a chemistry major which required five years for a PhD plus a year of post-doc work. So I learned to read slowly and carefully, somewhat unlike a literature or political science or education major who could rip through text books. Consequently, my background in 'literature' is very weak and I'm still a relatively slow reader, so despite my terminal degree, I'm sure I'm far behind most readers here in terms of 'literature.'

Interesting poll for fun, but hardly definitive or even significant. There are a lot of highly brilliant school dropouts - Bill Gates and Michael Dell come to mind ...
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:50 AM   #19
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I have a college degree plus grad courses. My husband has a high school diploma. I can't say I'm more educated them him. He listens to & watches many educational programs. He takes many workshops in his area (dental prosthetic technology) & he reads many trade magazines & books. The last 2 years he has taken an interest in computers & in a short time knows much more than me about how they work & various systems.

So though I have the degree, I think in many ways he is more educated. Though I do continue to read many types of books & occasionally take workshops.
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Old 08-03-2011, 12:39 PM   #20
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I read, therefore I am.
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Old 08-03-2011, 01:09 PM   #21
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i'm completing my ma this month, but i have a very sardonic view of english studies.
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Old 08-03-2011, 05:23 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mldavis2 View Post
So I learned to read slowly and carefully, somewhat unlike a literature or political science
Same for me (not sure if I learned that or if it's the natural way I read).

I read a lot, but I read very few books, especially not in my leisure time, which I would like .
I have a Master degree in mechanical engineering and I am currently doing a PhD; maybe one of the reason I do not find the "energy" to read books during my spare-time. However, I noticed that I am a voracious reader on other supports, like online articles, forums, etc.

For what concerns a potential relationship between reading and education, I believe reading is one of some powerful means to acquire knowledge, especially theoretical and general ones; overall, to satisfy one's curiosity and thirst for knowledge.
Nevertheless, in this regard I think it is important not to distinguish education substantiated by a degree from self-education. Then the relationship is more likely, even if not definitive.
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Old 08-03-2011, 05:33 PM   #23
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High school, college, grad schools were a hassle because they cut significantly into time available to read the material I wanted to read. I endured them. I probably learned more outside of those institutions than in them.

Last edited by unboggling; 08-03-2011 at 05:40 PM.
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Old 08-03-2011, 05:43 PM   #24
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"I have never let my schooling interfere with my education. " - Mark Twain
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Old 08-03-2011, 05:43 PM   #25
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I think readers are more likely to be educated than non-readers but that doesn't mean they've had more schooling. Schooling and education are not synonymous. Hell, they're not even related.
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Old 08-03-2011, 06:06 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patrickt View Post
I think readers are more likely to be educated than non-readers but that doesn't mean they've had more schooling. Schooling and education are not synonymous. Hell, they're not even related.
Bingo

I'm met some extremely intelligent people who never finished
high school and I've bet some real educated idiots.
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Old 08-03-2011, 06:16 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Clancy_s View Post
people who's education leans towards the humanities will on average read more than engineers.
Maybe not. Lots of engineers and scientists are avid sf readers, some are even writers. In my first grad school (Masters Social Work) I had an engineer roommate. He and his fellow engineers gobbled up more sf generally than I did and I'm an avid sf reader. I figured they were smarter than me and could read faster. Most of the social workers weren't avid readers.

In my second grad school (MS/PhD Info Systems) - switching POVs from humanities to sciences - some of my colleagues were avid readers and some weren't. And switching POVs didn't change my general choices of preferred reading material significantly.

Last edited by unboggling; 08-03-2011 at 07:20 PM.
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Old 08-03-2011, 07:17 PM   #28
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See: America's Most Literate Cities 201, a study by Central Connecticut State University (http://www.ccsu.edu/page.cfm?p=8227)

Quote:
Drawing from a variety of available data resources, the America’s Most Literate Cities study ranks the largest cities (population 250,000 and above) in the United States. This study focuses on six key indicators of literacy: newspaper circulation, number of bookstores, library resources, periodical publishing resources, educational attainment, and Internet resources.
St. Louis, btw, ranks in the top 10 overall, but is #46 in educational attainment. It is in a tie with Portland Oregon in the overall rankings. Portland ranks 4th in educational attainment.

Last edited by taming; 08-03-2011 at 07:20 PM.
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Old 08-03-2011, 07:36 PM   #29
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Wow. It amazes me that Washington DC is the most literate city in the US.

EDIT: (At least according to that study. It's probably skewed away from books by the newspapers and periodicals factors.)

Last edited by unboggling; 08-03-2011 at 07:44 PM.
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Old 08-03-2011, 08:03 PM   #30
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Disclaimer: I m just stating a generalization, I'm aware that there are many non educated people who are avid readers, and highly educated people who haven't even read their country's constitution.

I guess the logical reasoning would be that this 3 factors go together:
social-economic status
education level
avid Readers

A high economic status, gives you a wider variety of options and usually richer (in content) to choose from (schools/highschools/universities). An example is school/Highschool which include in their program a foreign language, even they let you choose between 2 or 3 foreign languages (english, chinese, french, german; most populars here in a spanish speaking country). So it would be a logical guess to say that people in the top half of the society pyramid tend to be more educated readers.
Having a wider variety and better options to choose from (schools/highschools/universities), possible would make them more interest in reading, and having easier and more diversified access to reading material.

Of course, there are exceptions. Natural curiosity.
For example: I would hate reading classics in Highschool, until my last years. When I started going to University, I only find time to read during Summer vacations (December, January and February), and would read up to 4 to 5 books during those 3 months, and only 1 or 2 during the rest of the year.
Also, because books are expenseive here (even the paperback one) I would make a search before and select the most promising and interesting ones.

Now that I have a kindle, its MUCH easier for me to have access to books than before. And I m reading an average of 1 to 2 books a month (depending if I'm during between semester, during exams weeks, etc).

Anecdote:
There was this book I wanted to read, "The Gun Seller" by Hugh Laurie. I wanted to read it in english, so not not to miss the puns, also because books tend to be much better in the language of the writer, and because neutral spanish sounds awful in my humble opinion.
I asked in the local libraries, and none would have it; i asked in libraries dedicated to english books, those didn't have it either. Though in one they offerred me to provide them the ISBN of the book, and they would give me an estimate of time and price.
The paperback was $9 back then, and they wanted to charge me $20.
I thought it an outrage. So I printed it at home in A5 paper (A5 = half A4). and sent it to get it "glued". I spent $5. (though the white impression sheets are hard on the eyes after a while, they reflect light a lot compared to mate paperbook sheets).
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