Date Many parents are convinced that the path their children should take is; attend junior school, complete high-school, college and possibly, a post graduate degree if they can afford it, all so they have a fighting chance in today’s competitive world (Palmar)…
Consider a few success stories of the 21st century; Bill gates the richest man in the world, quitted college in his final year, to start one of the world’s biggest and most influential companies the Microsoft cooperation (Williams ). Moreover, he is just one of many, the founder of dell computers as well as award winning director Stephen Spielberg, considering such examples; it is evident that the premium given to paper qualifications is clearly inflated. The American Society of Civil Engineers Policy Statement 465 requires that for one to be a licensed practitioner they must hold a master’s degree or its equivalent in the field otherwise they may not practice at a professional level (ASCE). In this paper, the ethics of putting credentials over competence will be contended with the view of proving that competence should be given more weight by employers and licensing bodies as opposed to exclusive reliance on paper qualifications. Credentials can be considered as those paper qualifications that are obtained by successful completion of a formal educational experience culminating in a certificate degree diploma or any other academic accreditation. Competence on the other hand can be determined by the ability of an individual to successfully and effectively complete a task; understandably, credentials are much easier to measure thus employees normally focus on them automatically disqualifying anyone without them. This way, many talented people are not allowed a chance to utilize their talents and the opportunities are reserved for those with the prerequisite papers. The assumption that paper qualifications necessary make an individual more qualified for a job is flawed on several levels, consider engineering as a career, in many schools, the focus is on ephemeral theory and mathematical concepts that do not always have a connection to the outside world. This is easy for teacher to do since theory is easy to teach and conveniently shelters them having to keep up with recent trends, but it also keeps away the creative minds and who are averse to memorizing abstract concepts. Ultimately, if two people, one with papers and another without, apply for a job in an auto assembly firm the company will likely not give the one without papers as much as an interview. This is irrespective of the fact that the latter may know more about the job through experience and self-education than the other may, however since the first stage of the assessment is the credentials, they will not get to showcase their abilities. It is thus not ethical that two out of two people who may have, similar skills the one without a diploma is not only unqualified to be work but even to be considered for the position. Through restrictions placed by bodies such as American Society of Civil Engineers, many talented people with experience and skills are discriminated. This is because even if one were to prove they are actually a better engineer, they would have to go to school and cram volumes of theory, before they are certified. Besides, college is expensive and not everyone can afford it, thus, with organizations putting glass ceilings on the professionals they hire, based on their certification, they discriminate anyone who could not afford college but opted to learn through experience ...
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