The problem of college students not knowing how to write complete sentences, or apparently having no idea what they are actually writing about, has become horrifyingly commonplace. When I taught classes and asked my students to write things -- including when I taught a graduate-level class -- with very rare exceptions, the results demonstrated shallow, perfunctory thought, an over-reliance on wikipedia, and profound inadequacies in written language skills.
Today I came across another dreadfully not-at-all-unusual example of this by way of FARK. Some favorites from this thirteenth grade teacher's roster of really bad papers include:
• “Romeo and Juliet exchanged their vowels.”
• “Jogging on a woman’s ovaries can be dangerous to her health.”
• “Willie Loman put Biff on a petal stool.”
• “The children of lesbian couples receive as much neutering as those of other couples."
• “Michaelangelo painted the ceiling of the Sixteenth Chapel.”
• “The French benefits of this job are good.”
• “Including snakes, most people consume six meals a day.”
• “Christopher Columbus sailed all over the world until he found Ohio.”
and the overall winner:
• “Benjamin Franklin discovered America while fling a kite.”
Now, some of this might be attributed to misuse of a spell-check function. For instance, "fling" is something that spell-check will not catch; as we all know, Ben Franklin was flying a kite when he discovered America.
People -- it doesn't matter how smart you are. If you can't write, other people will think you're an idiot.
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