Is Education Important Primarily for the Development of Mental Abilities or the Ability to Change and Adapt to Changing Environments – Literature review Example

The paper "Is Education Important Primarily for the Development of Mental Abilities or the Ability to Change and Adapt to Changing Environments?" is a delightful example of a literature review on education. Education is the key to success. The arguments presented by both Cornard and Wallace touch on the relevance of education not only to the one’s self but also to the entire society around them. They contend that it is critically important for one to attain an education. However, the two differ in their views on the role of education is supposed to play in one’s life. For example, Wallace, in his commencement speech, argues that the primary role of acquiring higher education is to enable one to think better than they did before. According to him, the world outside of college is so full of boredom and routine that one is compelled to think about the basic things in life such as “what is water?” (Mita, 2013). Conversely, Cornard approaches the importance of education from the perspective of its relevance to change. In his literary work entitled “We don’t need more humanities, majors,” he argues that the work as it is today needs less of humanities and arts graduates and more of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) professionals (Cornard, 2013). To defend his opinion, he gives several examples showing the sharp disparity in the contribution of STEM and humanities graduates’ contribution to the U.S economy. Both Cornard and Wallace use persuasive language to drive their arguments home. However, the techniques they employ are quite different. Wallace uses a lot of imagery to express his opinions on the importance of education (Mita, 2013). For example, he uses the analogy of two young fish and an older fish swimming in the opposite direction, the two gentlemen, a Christian and an Atheist, and daily routine of average Americans going through their businesses to make his audience more understand the points he is putting across (Mita, 2013). On the other hand, Cornard's work has a lot of academic content. He uses examples from the findings of scholarly research done by academics and professionals from different sectors to argue that America, and the globe, does not need more of humanities graduates because they are not the main drivers of the economy (Cornard, 2013). As a result, he paints a picture of how the U.S has been compelled to higher graduates from foreign countries to cater to the shortage of employees in the technology sector. Clearly, this disparity in approach can be attributed to the difference in presentation. Being a commencement speech, perhaps Wallace is expected to chip in some sense of humor in his speech and use a language that his audience can easily understand and connect with. One would be right to assume that to be the main reason he is using a lot of imagery and vivid description in his speech (Mita, 2013). He, therefore, employs this language, not really to motivate the graduating class, but to caution them of the reality waiting for them in the outside world. He is reminding them that it is not all merry in the job market, but thinking beyond the box is essential.  It can be deduced that the two authors are converging with each other at the point of stressing for a valuable education. They argue that attaining a degree would be futile if it will not be used to transform the self and society. Even so, they differ in the sense that Cornard stresses more on the role of education on the society while Wallace is self-biased.