Practical, hands on experience vs. academic education.
Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn.
- C. S. Lewis
I am a firm believer in the value of experience. Most of what I know today, is based upon my empirical and anecdotal experiences of the past.
Later in life, my experiences were validated, supported, and confirmed through academics, and scientific research.
This is backwards concerning the normal learning model. Typically, a person goes to school, then begins working in their field of study, and gains experience.
I often read, and hear people using the terms empirical and anecdotal incorrectly.
Often, you will hear people using the word empirical to reference academic or scientific research. Anecdotal is commonly used to describe personal experience.
Incorrectly labeled empirical data is commonly valued far above the lowly anecdotal data.
As you can clearly see by the definitions below, both of these words are closely related in meaning. Both are observation & experience based, devoid of scientific research.
Empirical data: depending upon experience or observation alone, without using scientific method or theory.
Anecdotal data: based on personal observation, case study reports, or random investigations rather than systematic scientific evaluation.
I don't care how much academic schooling a person has.
If they haven't put the time in, hands on, boots on the ground, and gone through the process of trial & error, in any field of study or topic; they are not truly educated on the subject (IMO).
Experience and science based education together, formulate the best case scenario. If I had to pick between a person with a doctorate degree and no practical experience, or a person with no college and 20 years of practical experience; I'd pick the no college guy 99% of the time.
Having said all that, let me get back to registering for my next semester of courses. 😀
MS, ISSA Master Trainer