Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Well I've had all my classes once now and things have been quite interesting.

In my very first class, the seminar class, there were students from Ethiopia, Nigeria, Vietnam, Sudan, Mozambique, Bhutan, Tunisia, Russia, South Korea, Mexico, India, Montenegro, Morrocco, and some other places too I think. It was amazing!! We're going to have to work on some group projects together so that will be an experience. I've already made connections with some women from India and Russia.

In my Intructional Training class the professor came in wearing a grubby sweatshirt inside-out and a backwards baseball cap. He proceeded to give the worst powerpoint presentation ever! Mumbling, reading off the slides with his back to the class, there was way too much text on the slides to read any of it, etc, etc. He was obviously making a point! With such a fun and energetic teacher, this is sure to be a great class.

In my Collection Development class we had a panel of library-type people who work with collection development. An interesting observation was made about people from other cultures not understanding libraries or the idea of borrowing items. Some people found it hard to understand borrowing something and not owning it then. It reminded me of a story I may have posted last year about a new librarian somewhere in South America. Parents came in crying and embarassed, believing their child had stolen a book from the library, when he had only checked it out. They didn't understand the concept.
Think about it for a minute. What would it be like to have no concept of the idea of borrowing?

Then I had my Development Management class. One of the most interesting topics to come up (something I had never heard about) is that Bhutan has replaced the GNP with GNH: Gross National Happiness. I know it sounds a bit kooky, but it's interesting.
Their king has declared that the ultimate purpose of government is to promote the happiness of the people. He has said that Gross National Happiness is more important than Gross National Product and he is giving happiness precedence over economic prosperity.

If you're interested, you can read multiple papers about this at The Centre for Bhutan Studies.

I'm off to study about ARCS, an instructional model, in preparation for my first assignment, due Friday!


@bdul muHib said...

Where is the person from Morocco from? Ask for me!

I think you've hit on something there with different cultures not having the idea of borrowing. In Morocco, other than the American institutions, there were no lending libraries. But I think the concept would have been considered somewhat rude in the culture in general- something given should be just that, a gift. Not that people would much want to read anyway, however.

Cosand said...

I'm just amused that there's a phrase that uses "gross" and "happiness" in it, and yet is not a reference to a 1980's Nickelodeon show...