Dumb Questions Do Exist

Grad school has been enlightening so far.  A recent revelation:  The majority of young adults are terrified of figuring something out for themselves without every. single. detail. being. spelled. out.

Did you SERIOUSLY just ask that?

The scenario goes like this:

1.  Assignment description is emailed to everyone several days before class
2.  Prof brings up the assignment in class as a reminder it’s due soon
3.  Prof is flooded with questions about the assignment
4.  I die a little on the inside

When did it become normal/acceptable to ask a prof to spell out every minute detail about an assignment?  Did I miss something here?  I hate wasting time, especially when that time is half of my evening class, and especially when it is being wasted by unnecessary questions.  Besides, how is this training for the “real world” in any way?  I can’t help but think my annoyance with classmates asking redundant questions about material they should be able to figure out for themselves  is similar to the annoyance a boss would feel toward an employee asking for the same sort of hand-holding.  Yes, school is for learning.  Yes, students should ask questions. But please, can we skip the dumb questions?  Because contrary to what you were told in elementary school, yes, dumb questions do exist.

For your reference, I have outlined what constitutes a Dumb Question below.  Feel free to share this with those who need it.

A Dumb Question (DQ) Is:
*One that has already been asked
*One that has been answered in the syllabus/handout/assignment
*One that pertains only to you (that’s what email and office hours are for)
*One that primarily serves as an opportunity for you to try to make yourself look smart/cool/progressive [i realize this sort of question is slightly off the topic of this post, but it’s still a DQ so i included it in the mix]
*One that you should be able to figure out yourself as adult who has been in school for over 16 years 

To further illustrate, my dear friend Kaylene sent me the following infograph:

from iwastesomuchtime.com

Down with the DQ’s!

Always, Alissa Jean

PS – This has been my experience in the Com school at Grand Valley State University…  it is no way an attack on EVERY student that goes there, or the profs, or an assertion that I have never asked a dumb question myself.  It’s just an observation that I have observed.  I’d be curious to hear others’ experiences with DQ’s at different schools and in different programs as well.   Thoughts?

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5 thoughts on “Dumb Questions Do Exist

  1. Pingback: Just do it (right the first time) « AlissaJean.com

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