Continuing education

I am back for another semester of university. I’ve planned on taking two courses this time around. I think that anything more than two courses will be a bit too much on my plate. I don’t think that I’ll have enough time to divvy up between work, personal life and education. But I think that this semester I have it a bit easy. The courses that I’ll be taking don’t require too much homework.

I am currently enrolled in the Mohawk-McMaster Bachelor of Technology degree program. It’s a two year program when taken full time but it will take me four years to complete at the rate of two courses per semester. I would prefer to complete the course as soon as possible but the full time employment does not permit me to do so.

This semester I will be taking Data Mining and Ethics and IT Law. Data mining is a course on the fundamental concepts of extracting hidden patterns from data. The ethics course is a study of the impact of the technological revolution on our privacy. I’ve attended the first class of each course and I’m glad to say that I’m looking forward to the courses. I’m looking forward more so to the ethics course than the data mining course.

The data mining course requires us to do a bunch of research and then do a couple of presentations on our findings. There are no exams in this course so the presentations will take its place. I was never good with present a topic but over the years, I’ve learned to improve that skill. I believe that the more you do something, the better you come at it. As the saying goes, “Practice makes perfect.”

The ethnics and IT law class revolves around case studies and class discussion. The professor is a lawyer and seems to enjoy getting students to answer. I think that’s the best way to teach because it makes the class less boring. If you’re constantly getting the students involved in a discussion, they won’t have time to fall asleep in class. And it’s very hard to stay focus when the class is held on a Saturday afternoon. So far, the topics of discussion seem to be interesting enough that everyone is eager to participate.

So far, the only course that has caught my attention is the ethics course. It contains intriguing topics and it’s very interactive. The professor engages in a discussion and soliciting answers from the student which is what a teacher should be done. I’ve mentioned to him my goals of hopefully obtaining a Ph.D and he has already suggested a possible path. He suggested that I work on getting my Master of Business Administration and then continue towards obtaining a Doctor of Business Administration.

Athabasca University offers these two programs via distant education. I took a look at those courses and I was in awe. The MBA program cost $43,740 takes about 2 years to complete. The DBA cost $50,135 and takes about 4 years to complete. That’s almost $100,000 for a piece of paper. At this rate, I’ll be in my forties before I get a Ph.D degree. That’s going to take a lot of hard work but that’s what you go through if you want to become a professional.