July 22, 2011

If you can't come up with the money to buy an iPad, "you are not suitable to learn finance or be my students."

"Henry Liang, who teaches finance in English at Shanghai Maritime University, notified students on his personal blog last week that all course materials, including tests and PowerPoint presentations, would be in iPad format only."

39 comments:

Sixty Grit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ndspinelli said...

Hold the presses..alert all media..a dogmatic professor. What a fucking scoop!!

rhhardin said...

Power point is where it's at.

chickenlittle said...

Is that that Prof. paid-off by Apple?

If I were a student of of his I'd be tempted to txt:

"Liang-time no see, professor!"

madAsHell said...

I think he just fell on his sword.

If you can't make the money during the summer break, then you don't belong in my class.

should be:

If you can make the money during the summer break, then you don't need my class.

Carol_Herman said...

Tools of the trade, I suppose? He doesn't use textbooks. Textbooks cost hundreds of dollars.

Economically speaking it looks like professors aren't going to be in the publishing business much longer?

It's like a kid who didn't get Nintendo back in the 1980's. They wouldn't have developed the "finger skills" necessary to develop computing skills. And, then? If you couldn't do algorithms you wouldn't make it as a programmer.

Things link.

At least you won't break your back carrying a heavy backpack to school, no?

The Crack Emcee said...

Nowadays, there seems to be something about the title "professor" that just screams, "I urgently want to be a foolish fascist!"

As if there's any other kind,...

chickenlittle said...

Carol_Herman wrote: Tools of the trade, I suppose? He doesn't use textbooks. Textbooks cost hundreds of dollars.

See, he could have sold the idea that way and made sense--actually saving his student money.

Triangle Man said...

Hey students, I am requiring you to purchase the most popular personal communications and entertainment device on the market.

Geoff Matthews said...

Why an iPad, though? What's the problem in making the content available for an Android format?
Text books in the Kindle format, PPTs available in PDF, tests in HTML? All available w/ the Android.

edutcher said...

Gates won't go for that.

Isn't he in bed with the Red Chinese?

Michael said...

Powerpoint?! Again, it is made clear that the Chinese are not ahead of us. Again, it is the little tells that give it away. Powerpoint!! Pretty funny.

Oligonicella said...

He's promoting a specific company, not a type of device. He could very easily pump out his material in pdf and everyone could read it on any device *they already own*. Instead, he took an Apple fan-boy stance and insisted anyone who doesn't have an iPad is inferior.

It may be allowed, but he's a shallow dick.

Salamandyr said...

Unfortunately this probably won't save the students any money. I imagine the price for electronic textbooks is almost as high as for the paper kind.

Ebooks are ridiculously overpriced.

Thorley Winston said...

From the original article:

Liang changed his microblog ID and deleted the posts and wrote new ones in English over the weekend that carried a defiant tone.

"Chinese like win in tongue, but I like win the real," he wrote. "iPad will still be brought into classroom. Formal wears are still required. I still keep all my opinions as yesterday. Nothing changes! I win all the real. You can claim victory in tongue, but nothing more."


Does anyone else imagine this in the voice of the Chinese guy from the “Hangover” movies?

Carol_Herman said...

Ode to history.

By the time my son got into kindergarten ... 1984 ... Apple was outfitting ALL the public schools in California with Apple II-E's. True. The Apple's were in the cafeteria.

But boy did it help sell product! Because, I seem to remember our first computer (purchased before my son even started school) ... Was the Apple II'E.

And, I remember one of the selling points, too, was that you could pop the lid up. And, you could just reach inside the machine.

Also, the "typing pad" looked like an old-fashioned electric typewriter.

Microsoft's computer required you to memorize all the featured buttons from F-1 thruogh F-8. Touch one, and you'd see a pull down menu. But the Apple? Wow, was it ever graphic. And, easier to use.

And, the paper? Came out of a dot matrix machine.

Doesn't the iPad have other features that would make it viable in this classroom? What if you had a Mac Laptop? Wouldn't that work as well?

What are the cross-platform applications?

As to "everything" being on the iPad ... sounds like you can do everything OUTSIDE of the classroom. And, then, how does the professor know he's not dealing with a student like Teddy Kennedy ... who sent in others ... to cover the subjects he couldn't pass? Like french.

Thorley Winston said...

He's promoting a specific company, not a type of device. He could very easily pump out his material in pdf and everyone could read it on any device *they already own*. Instead, he took an Apple fan-boy stance and insisted anyone who doesn't have an iPad is inferior.

Agreed, I don’t have a problem with requiring that students taking his class have or get access to a device enabling them to read it electronically (that’s how a lot of business is done) but I don’t see any justification for limiting it to such a narrow format.

Carol_Herman said...

Turns out it pays to speak Chinese!

One of my favorites, Jimmy Rogers, married late in life. And, has two daughters. Both born after the year 2000.

He used to live in a gorgeous Manhattan townhouse. But when his first daughter was born ... he hired a nurse who could speak Mandarin. And, she was tasked with talking to his daughter in her native tongue. PERIOD.

Then, before the oldest daughter turned 4, Rogers sold his Manhattan townhouse. (Why would any person want to deal with the liberal NYC schools, even if you were guaranteed a seat in the best of them?)

He and his wife, and two daughters, went to live in Hong Kong. Because he wanted both his girls to be fluent in both English and Chinese.

A very forward looking man!

Got a top price for his NYC townhouse to boot.

Just luck? Or foresight?

Joe said...

I assume that in this context, "finance" means the art of spending money friviously (i.e. the US Congress.)

Oligonicella said...

If Henry has any stock in Apple, he could be up for some interesting charges.

Heart_Collector said...

If this guy can't come up with the ability to use universal formats that will work for everyone, hes not suitable to be my teacher. Id show him my I-finger and find another class.

wv: munadyno. Make sure you pull down your pants and show a dinosaur your ass.

chickenlittle said...

wv: munadyno. Make sure you pull down your pants and show a dinosaur your ass.

You know it's a shame that wv's can't be hashtagged on Althouse like on Twitter. Some of these "definitions" are really quite clever. I would like to click on a #wv link and see them all arrayed. Perhaps one day.

galdosiana said...

"Chinese like win in tongue, but I like win the real," he wrote. "iPad will still be brought into classroom. Formal wears are still required. I still keep all my opinions as yesterday. Nothing changes! I win all the real. You can claim victory in tongue, but nothing more."

The thing that scares me even more than his iPad requirement is the fact that the man who wrote this actually teaches in ENGLISH.

Scott M said...

The thing that scares me even more than his iPad requirement is the fact that the man who wrote this actually teaches in ENGLISH

Instead of Spanglish, could this be considered Chinglish?

Robert Cook said...

Judged by his disdain for students lacking the means to buy an iPad, he's got to be a Republican.

Heart_Collector said...

" Robert Cook said...
Judged by his disdain for students lacking the means to buy an iPad, he's got to be a Republican."

But if hes a democrat he'll just point you towards the nearest rentacenter and expect you to default on the loan.

wv: Sherman - Sherman, tanks for the ipad. (Ha!)

Juba Doobai! said...

Textbooks in China don't cost much. They translate ALL of ours, print and sell them for 1/10th of their value.

The iPad, now, that costs. Most likely, the kids will wind up buying a Chinese fake with 2GB of flash RAM.

Sigivald said...

There's no special "iPad format" for PowerPoint presentations (especially since PowerPoint doesn't run on iOS).

Frankly, I really doubt he's writing and somehow distributing custom iOS apps for test taking, either, for each test.

It'd be more work for EVERYONE, to NO benefit, to do that.

(Assuming any of the report was accurate, anyway, or that, given the rampant fraud in China these days, that the "iPad"s the kids bought would have even been "iPad"s.)

So in essence, if the report was accurate, what that tells us is that you don't want to take his class anyway, because he's a fool.

Tibore said...

You know, I started out being offended by his requirement - after all, why dictate personal device use and limit to a given standard? - but then I thought about it. He's telling his students in China that he's set a requirement for his class that the students will have to do real-world work to meet. What's more self-reliant and free-market than that? It's not like he's specifying how they should earn their cash.

I understand that he isn't teaching them outright entreprenualism; that much is obvious. But he is making them learn self reliance. "I have set this standard; go meet it." While I'm still at odds about the notion of specifying a single Apple product (if the original material is in PPT, PDF, or whatever, that's platform independent, and there's no reason to say "Ipad only"), I'm actually becoming more copacetic with the idea of telling his students that they have to work to meet a minimum level in his class. If nothing else, it gets them working and thinking about how to earn on their own, and in a socialist country like China, I don't see how that's a bad thing at all.

Hell... in a capitalist country like America, that's not necessarily a bad thing.

I know that this narrative on the surface is "Dictatorial Professor, Micromanagement of Students Lives". I'm not sure he really went about trying to implement his idea in a very good way. But at the same time, maybe we ought to look underneath: A nation that just a couple or three generations ago was still painfully feudal, and just a couple of decades ago was even more painfully centralized than it is now could use a few real-world ongoing lessons in self reliance and living without an Overarching Nanny government taking care of everything. One thing my mother noted in the Philippines in the areas she lived in was that the most entreprenual, capitalistic residents were the transplanted Chinese and their families. The basic, raw character is there in some of them, and possibly moving people away from government reliance won't be such a bad thing, however small in actual execution. Like I said above: It's not necessarily a bad lesson for Americans, let alone anyone living in Mainland China.

Godot said...

Hey old dudes, chill. You can run iOS on a PC or a Mac. It's even been ported to Android appliances.

Take a deep breath and crank up the Fleetwood Mac.
-

Tibore said...

"Sigivald said...
There's no special "iPad format" for PowerPoint presentations (especially since PowerPoint doesn't run on iOS).

Frankly, I really doubt he's writing and somehow distributing custom iOS apps for test taking, either, for each test."


Yes, this must be emphasized. Chances are that for course material, it's starting out as PowerPoint, but being transformed by some app into something presentable on an iPad. Possibly that university is using Keynote. Or, they're converting to PDF. It could be as simple as turning a PPT into a Flash movie (.flv) or MP4 using any of the myriad tools out there (Adobe Presenter, for example... or just being lazy and recording an Adobe Connect meeting room with the Powerpoint playing and the professor lecturing). Regardless, I don't see how they'd construct course material that can only be read on an iPad. There's a bit of hyperbole going on with that professor's announcement; I'd imagine that's just that professor's lack of knowledge about how the technology actually works.

Scott M said...

Take a deep breath and crank up the Fleetwood Mac.

Hey, now. Landslide is classic simplicity. One need not be old to enjoy it as either a listener or a guitarist.

SunnyJ said...

More Progressive's idealogy of power...picking winners (ipad) and losers (students that done't buy them). Prof feels entitled to this edict, as he is culling the crowd (little Margaret Sanger if you please) and helping the students see their place in society.

Interesting, as he demands they be capitalists of the first order in qualifying that only be securing "money" can you prove you have the right to study "money".

Bi-polar, guy needs meds.

John said...

Back in the 90's my school required all homework, papers and assignments to be typed. "Word Processed" was the term used.

This raised howls of protest because some students claimed they could not type or did not have access to computers or typewriters.

My attitude as a teacher was screw 'em. It is hard enough reading all those pages when they are typed. Trying to decipher their handwriting was near impossible.

In the late 90's my son spent an exchange semester at a school that required him to have a laptop.

I see nothing unreasonable about requiring the I-Pad. I wonder if the requirement is that they have an I-Pad or that the work they turn in be in I-Pad format?

I only accept assignments in MS-Word .DOC format. I could care less how the students get them there.

I would much prefer to accept only WordPerfect WPD format but I seem like the only one in the World who still like WP.

FAR, FAR superior to Word in so many ways.

John Henry

Scott M said...

So...mythesis.txt wouldn't fly in your class?

kwood said...

I like these kinds of teachers. I had a Computer Science teacher in college back in 1983 who had all the CS majors buy Commodore VIC 20's and a tape drive. We did some cool assignments on that and learned a lot.

Why go to college if not to be challenged occasionally in uncomfortable or unexpected ways? 'Poor' students in particular can benefit hugely and really learn from a challenge like this, much more than the wealthier kids who's parents simply buy them one.

To just sit there, roll your eyes and say, "Help, I'm being oppressed!" is, to me, more of a cop-out than anything. Try doing that when the rent is due, or your boss tells you the deadline for a particular task has just been cut in half.

With lots of older, used devices floating around, and the compatibility of $200 iPod Touch's to run the same apps, it's really not that much of a challenge.

But feeling oppressed feels so darn good!

Kirk Parker said...

Carol,

"Microsoft's computer required you to memorize all the featured buttons from F-1 thruogh F-8. "

I sure wish you wouldn't waste our bandwidth with BS like this.

Carol_Herman said...

You know, Liang seems to suffer from a deficit of English language skills.

Perhaps his reference to an iPad ... is due to his lack of speaking better English?

Maybe, too, he's limited to using a program he knows?

How'd he get the job teaching this course?

(Yes. There was a time DOS needed the user to know the MENUS on F-1 through F-8 keys. And, Apple II-E's ... came before the Mac.

Mike said...

A professor who does not understand the value of saving $600 is not qualified to teach finance.