Home Forums Public Forum: Online, Ongoing International students’ perspectives about “what is most worthwhile knowledge

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    Share your understandings about what is most worthwhile knowledge.


    In recent years, what knowledge is most useful to us has become a topic that people like to discuss. With this question comes the question of what experience we can learn that will be good for our future development so that our knowledge is sufficient to deal with the difficulties we will face in the future. Wpinar mentions that self-knowledge is knowledge of most worth.
    However, in my opinion, the value of knowledge lies in practicality. I think knowledge is divided into professional knowledge and common sense of life. The common sense of life is the knowledge everyone needs, but also the most valuable knowledge. Everyone needs to survive, and survival requires the accumulation of knowledge. It is with the help of experience that man knows how to make a fire to cook the food. Professional knowledge is the knowledge that people want to study in a particular field further to benefit society. For example, different people need different knowledge, architects need knowledge of architecture, and computer engineers need knowledge of programming. The value of expertise lies in specific areas. Therefore, I think the value of knowledge is related to people’s needs, and specific knowledge shows its value in helping specific people.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 11 months ago by Alexandyty.

    Thank you very much for your sharing. You mentioned about practical knowledge as well as professional knowledge. Do you think they are in same way sharing the similar characteristic of instrumentalism. Do you think we could fully imagine about our future? OR is there anything beyond our imagination, beyond practicality and professionality?


    As far as I am concerned, I believe that the most worthwhile knowledge should not belong to a specific curriculum that I have gained from schooling, while I am not judging that all of those curriculums are not useful. However, not all of them can be considered as “the most worthwhile” to me personally. Admittedly, not all the knowledge learned at school would be used lifelong. Conversely, I believe that worth knowledge should be more functional, and not only constrained theoretically.

    Hence, I consider that the most worth knowledge should be, from which individuals could use for self-cognition and deal with interpersonal relationships.


    In order to be able even to begin exploring this question, it is important to know what is the definition of knowledge really is. Knowledge is a wide concept,it contains multiple categories. Knowledge does not only give us high-quality education. It helps us to understand of science, art, or technique.It also helps as to shaping our moral qualities,decent values and so on. The most valuable knowledge for me is a basic knowledge of day-to-day life. The most basic knowledge of day-to-day life is the most useful knowledge for many people — for example, communication skills, individual thinking, moral qualities, and so on. The communication skill helps us to assimilate into this society. The ability of individual thinking is not only conducive to current learning but also is the foundation of future inventions and creativity. Having a good moral quality is not only the benefit for ourselves; it is also the benefit for the whole society.


    I am a student come from China, and studies at Corpus Christi College- English 110. As college students to understand what is most worthwhile knowledge, most of us to thinking about worthwhile knowledge which is can help us to go into a great university and fine a great job, having a great future.
    I think most people think of learning as the only way to change their destiny. However, the fact is the most worthwhile knowledge depends on each person’s situation. For example, Study contented with the status quo, just want to get into a good university. -This is uncertain, and no one can predict in the future. Maybe you have learned a lot and didn’t get into university. Is your life plan over? In addition, when you think the most worthwhile knowledge is learning to deal with interpersonal relationships or learning to find the meaning of self-existence in life. At this time, the most worthwhile knowledge for you has gone deeper. Compared to this, the knowledge is more practical in the concept of traditional knowledge.

    Hanmeng Liu

    First of all, we have to leave aside the issue for a while that the exact definition in philosophy, sociology, history. We define the “knowledge” in the problem as the knowledge in our general awareness, and then consider what is the most worthwhile knowledge. Even so, it still can not get a standard answer on the comparison of knowledge. As Dr.Pinar mentioned, economists measure value by risk minimization and benefit maximization, while certain governments tailor the curriculum to meet the needs of a country’s development. Because of this difference, everyone’s initial enlightenment and growth environment. There can only be one relative answer to this question. For example, a child from a poor family can hardly have a broad perspective in his family with limited economic conditions, so the most
    valuable knowledge for them is the knowledge that can protect income and changing economic conditions, even if the knowledge may only be compliant The needs of social development.
    In my opinion, if this question is to be explored in-depth, the respondents must be based on a wealth of knowledge and experiences. Just like Anita’s comment about history, the stance fo history. The initial historical stance of some people is usually based on the consciousness formed by education.
    Because some history may have been adapted by existing regimes. The only way to break this imprisoned mind is to get more knowledge. We must constantly weigh and study among the differences of knowledge before we can have our own judgment and stance. Similarly, I think that self-world is also based on
    the personal knowledge base and experience; therefore, Self-knowledge and world-awareness are intertwined.
    We learn how to define the world and others firstly, then reflect your differences through the world
    and others,that is the start of self-knowledge.
    Response to the relationship between self-knowledge and emotion, I think self-knowledge is combined with emotion, but it is not the same as awareness of emotion. Emotional self-awareness will be an
    extremely subjective self-awareness, people are controlled by emotions. However, objective self-knowledge, as I mentioned earlier, get feedback from the world and others, and then objectively screen the available definitions to build a three-dimensional image of yourself in consciousness. This feedback needs to be combined with emotions and then judged through wisdom and experience.
    Finally, I think the value of knowledge is difficult to measure and compare absolutely. If an answer is required, it can only be compared with the knowledge that the individual currently has. In addition, I think self-knowledge is actually a kind of wisdom derived from knowledge, and it is the most worthwhile for everyone.


    I don’t think knowledge can measure value, but if we have to price knowledge, then the price of knowledge is relative.
    If we define a value for something, that thing can be called a commodity. Commodities are valuable. They are the product of human labour. For instance, an apple may be worthless to people who don’t like apples. But if you are a severely scarce person in the desert, it can be worth a thousand dollars. Therefore, knowledge’s value can’t be measured.
    Knowledge is the same. It is also the product of human labour.
    I’m afraid I have to disagree with William Pinar, who mentioned in his article that self-knowledge is the most valuable knowledge. For a knowledgeable person, self -knowledge may be the most valuable knowledge, but for a person struggling to survive, perhaps work skills are the most relevant knowledge.
    If we analyze self-knowledge from the perspective of a philosopher, self-knowledge is a summary of past experience. According to David Home, although the results we now get are the result of history experience. However, we cannot use history experience to prove that the necessary relationship exists between past experience and future effect.
    In conclusion, knowledge is a way of thinking of predecessors. We can’t measure knowledge in specific value. However we can choose what is valuable to us and create a different future


    I think it is very thoughtful comment. Thank you very much! I particularly like your contrast of self-knowledge and world awareness. But I think they might be unified rather than segregated.


    All knowledge is worthwhile, but I think some knowledge is more worthwhile in relative comparisons. In other words, some knowledge is useful, but its learning costs are high (time and energy). People always think that as long as a certain subject is given to them, certain benefits can be achieved, and they completely forget whether those benefits are sufficient. For example, when a person can memorize the names of every region and country in the world, there may be some usefulness during travel, but this usefulness is very small. However, some language-like knowledge can be very useful and useful in many fixed scenarios.
    From my personal experience, I think language type knowledge is important to me because as a second language learner, I need the hub of language to absorb all other knowledge now. To sum up, I personally think that language learning is the most knowledgeable knowledge, but everyone will have different ideas based on their different experiences. What people need more is to judge the importance of knowledge and learning costs.


    The most worthwhile knowledge in my understanding is the valuable knowledge that mean something for one person’s life. In my opinion, knowing what you are good at is the most worthwhile knowledge. In the other word, it means finding the talent of yourself. Because finding the highlight ability of people could bring confident, more importantly, it help people define their suitable career might be. It doesn’t need to be peculiar skills, it could be a creative mind or sensibility of number. It is could be anything that people can apply and evolve. Every unique individual has something special due to genes, education and experience. It is a treasure that should be discovered. By finding people’s talents, they would finding the area that they could involve, because they could be no less capable than others ,if they keep improving the ability. And the improvement also build people’ s confidence become more reasonable and certain. To summary, finding the talent of people could be the guide. Doing what people are good at would be easier for people to improve and develop to be the higher levels. People would be less confuse about choosing area of working.


    Thank you very much for your sharing.


    Knowledge is a broad idea, usually when we are talking about knowledge we are discussing knowledge of a particular acdamic field such as mathmatics and literature. These knowledge are useful for the development of humanbeing, however, the most worthwhile knowledge is the knowledge of moral values. Moral value is different for everyone, but there’s something we all know that’s bad action such as stealing, bullying, violence. Most of schools don’t teach students all about the moral values, that’s why we often see some people who have high level of education diploma, but have terriblr personal behavior, they never consider what effects will be brought to others becasue of their behavior. Also, the knowledge of moral values is a knowledge that can only be taught when people are young, when they become adults, their behavior is hard to change, even when they realize what they did not only make others unconfortable but also hurt themselves, it’s almost impossible for them to fix their behavior. The knowledge of moral values doesn’t look important, since it can’t bring any scientific improvement to human, but it’s essential for everyone’s life because it’s the only thing that can protect us from hurting each other, otherwise there be contless fights, even wars.


    As the beginning of primary school, there is a question keeping in mind: what is the reason for citizens to be educated?During the process of schooling, I realized that the importance of education is the ability to acquiring knowledge by ourselves.
    Knowledge tends to be a commodity in recent years, higher level education means they have better quality of life. More and more schools compare with other about students’ grades, so they change the traditional way to educate. Pupils are taught in order to gain higher grade or win the prize. As same as my experience, the purpose of education has changed into considerable outcome. While in my opinion, methods lead to knowledge is most essential. There are limited founded theoretical understandings in the world, while the exploration is endless. The main meaning of education is inspiring us to unearth further knowledge. Even though existing knowledge provides us the fundamental idea for higher level theorem, the leading for pupils cannot be ignored. Knowledge should not be located in the range which has been recognized by peer intellectual, but keeps the same speed with time. Overall, I think the methods to explore further knowledge is the most worthwhile knowledge.

    Ranzhe Chen

    In my opinion, there is no knowledge that is the most valuable in this world. The knowledge that suits oneself is the most valuable. People at different stages of life have different definitions of the value of knowledge, I think the concept of the most valuable knowledge is a very personal answer. For students, the most valuable knowledge must be the basic knowledge, the knowledge learned in school is the foundation of a lifetime of development, just like the foundation of building a building. If there is no foundation, no matter how high it is useless because it will collapse. For people in different positions, the answer to “what knowledge is the most valuable” is even more different. Those who are new to the job may need more practical knowledge, while those who have worked for a long time may need new knowledge that keeps pace with the Times. Therefore, we choose the most valuable knowledge from different backgrounds and different professions. The most valuable knowledge we need varies at different stages of our lives.
    In conclusion, what knowledge we need most or what knowledge is the most valuable for us, the key lies in the social era, the social environment, our interests and hobbies, and our needs in different periods.

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