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Anonymous Poster

What's Wrong With Homework Questions?

04/04/2010 2:04 AM

Why are the administrators of this site so freaked about homework questions being posted here?

As in here;

http://cr4.globalspec.com/thread/52813/PHASE-CHANGE?frmtrk=CR4digest

There are plenty of homework questions that I would like to hear the answer or opinions on and it defeats the purpose of the internet in general and of this site in particular to deliberately prevent our education on such questions, that I for one would otherwise never normally ask myself simply because I am not aware enough of the subject to raise the question in the first place, but on seeing the question would appreciate enlightenment and discussion rather than being told I'm not allowed to see the discussion because the administrators have got some sort of hang up about it.

It's not the same to then go on a google search of the answer because this site has some of the best and smartest contributors on the internet that are not available elsewhere, WHICH IS WHY THE QUESTION WAS BEING ASKED HERE IN THE FIRST PLACE, probably because theory and experience are combined in their answers and responses, which slant you cannot get from a pure educational site.

Just my 2ยข worth.

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#1

Re: What's wrong with homework questions?

04/04/2010 2:17 AM

Flattery will get you everywhere. And we'll do just about anything for a GA!

Now we don't want every student skipping the books and library just to get a quickie answer from us. There is valuable learning in research, and that's what school is all about: learning how to learn.

If a student is stuck, can't find what he needs, I don't mind helping. But most of the questions are so dry, want formulas or even worse, solutions to math problems. A student has to get familiar with the math, so he isn't slow when he goes to work.

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#2

Re: What's wrong with homework questions?

04/04/2010 3:11 AM

It's not that they are homework per se.
It's not even the questions, it's the answers.
If one could garantee that there would only be hints and guidance which would lead the student into actually thinking and understanding then that would be fine. Unfortunately some people just want a simple numerical answer or soundbite which they can copy without understanding.
Now undersanding isn't always everything, but it's a good 95%, I'm a great believer in the empirical and in experience...but these are arguably not the tools for answering one's homework.

There is a fine distinction between help with homework and help with a school project...I think that line is about 'ones own work, ideas and understanding'.

Pencil in the old quote about giving a man a fish or a fishing line...

Gotta go, toast has popped, kettle's boiled. Brevqot error...
Del

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#4
In reply to #2

Re: What's wrong with homework questions?

04/04/2010 7:04 AM

GA! Couldn't have said it better myself!

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#3

Re: What's wrong with homework questions?

04/04/2010 3:25 AM

This is priceless! A real gem! I especially like the part about how you think we are here to, "deliberately prevent our education".

I don't know how not doing your homework for you will, " deliberately prevent our education". Perhaps you can explain that one to me.

The administrators aren't the only ones with, "some sort of hang up about it".

You seem to think that we are under some sort of obligation do your bidding. Ain't so buckaroo.

Generally, if the person asking the question wants help and not just the answer handed to them, they get all the help they ask for. There are some incredibly intelligent people here who do this FOR FREE and go out of their way to help those who ask for it. Not demand, but ask.

Go here:

How Can You Optimize Range for a Trebuchet?

This is how you get help! By being honest. Not by being a spoiled brat and demanding instant gratification.

Like this, "Dear friends, please send me presentation on piping stress analysis."

Which one would you help?

Here's another one."Please guide me to design the Earth Mat for a commercial complex. I request you to kinldy give me the Standards reference, Size of rod, material of rod & design procedure."

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#5

Re: What's Wrong With Homework Questions?

04/04/2010 8:59 PM

Well for me, one of the most interesting parts of being an engineer is that we can spend time finding the solution ourselves. On the way to finding the solution (or sometimes solutions in the plural) we come across lots of other information which we hope will stick in our minds and that - another day with another problem - will spring back to our minds and help us find another solution.

I wasn't too keen on doing homework myself and a simple answer would have suited me fine on many an occasion. But with hindsight, if I had learned how to learn at an earlier age, I would have become a far more useful engineer much earlier.

So please do your homework questions and, if you are stuck on a particular aspect of that homework, then come and ask. But not before having spent a fair amount of time looking in the world of information that is out there and will make you a better engineer if you look.

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#6

Re: What's Wrong With Homework Questions?

04/05/2010 8:39 AM

When I went to school I never asked anyone for "the answer" to any question. I used what I had learned as a guide to finding the answer. I did,however, ask for a shove in the right direction from time to time.

Now I'll quote one of my favorite lines from two great philosophers named Bud Abbott and Lou Costello:"(Question) DID YOU GO TO SCHOOL, STUPID?(Reply) YEA, AND I COME OUT THE SAME WAY!!!"

If you expect people to always give you the answers then I suggest that you take the time to learn and be ready to use this quote.

Good luck.

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#7

Re: What's Wrong With Homework Questions?

04/05/2010 7:56 PM

Every forum is different, and each has its own set of guidelines. Physicsforum has a lot of good homework help, as does Eng-Tips, but the levels, and the amount of help, are very different.

I'm a moderator on another serious forum where, if I made one of my typical smart-a**ed comments with a couple of , I'd ban myself - I swear I would. Yet that board would tolerate a discussion of whether the early Catholic saints were really Druid fishmongers - a topic that'll get your post closed on here.

This is a forum for serious, not sober, engineers and technicians. We've all paid our dues, whether in long years of school or chained to a drafting table and fed only jellied vellum.

I'm always ready to help a newbie. I'll give you any help you want, but not your homework. There's a reason it's your homework. It's supposed to be hard and you're supposed to struggle with it. Ask me what book to look in and I'll tell you. Ask me what the answer means and I'll probably tell you that... if I remember. But, I don't do homework.

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