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"Matthew S. Whiting" <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 10 Feb 1998 18:06:49 -0500
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> Mark commented on Masters Degrees in computer science:
>     > ... I've looked at the master's programs for ... nearby schools
>     > and I see the same thing: the courses I finished taking as an
>     > undergraduate fifteen years ago. Everything I've needed to learn
>     > to do my job and explore beyond it I've learned on my own, whether
>     > it be C++, 3D graphics, CORBA, Ada 95, distributed processing,
>     > and I've done it far more efficiently and cheaply than I would
>     > have by getting a Master's degree.
>
> The purpose of a Master's Degree (or Bachelor's degree) is not to
> prepare people for a job. Why are there job-related courses
> at the Master's degree level? The purpose of Academia is to do
> research, both basic research and applied research.
>
> The computer science field is rapidly approaching this ideal where
> the job market is looking for skills instead of degrees.
>
> And when degrees are required, they are domain degrees.
> These domain degrees are likely to be finance, electrical engineering,
> chemical engineering, biological engineering, communications
> engineering, control systems, nanosystems, robotics, and for the rare
> compiler company even computer science.
>
> Of course a math degree is substitutable for all of the domains,
> since math is the queen of the sciences and the empress of all
> domains. No smiley: seriously, mathematicians can not only substitute
> for any engineer, but they can actually explain the domains to
> those engineers, once those domains are modelled mathematically.
> Between a mathematician and a domain expert, the domain expert is
> laid off,  because that mathematician: she can really do more jobs.
>

So this must explain why the starting salaries for engineers and comp
sci grads are so much higher than for mathematicians with similar
education.  Or was this a tongue-in-cheek comment?  :-)

Nothing against mathematicians, but to say they are more "valuable" than
engineers is absurd.  Value is determined by the market and the market
has spoken...

Matt

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