A point that really interested me was made in the beginning third of the article by Robert Nelson and Phillip Dawson. The point was about there being competition within both education and society at large and how they enforce each other. How I interpreted this point was that these two different competitions rely on each other as school helps teach you competition which is then later used in society at large. (later on in the article the authors state that school is not necessary to teach competition as there is competition in the wild) This also works both ways as society affects the competitions created in school. Later on in the article the authors talk about how society used to accept a pass or fail school system but now society helped change the competition within schools to a grading system where students are (not always but mostly) competing against each other.
This interested me because I feel that this point connects previous articles such as the article named Contested Meaning of Prescription Stimulant Use in College Academics by Amy Cooper and Lisa McGee. In that article, there was a student named Grace who tried to not use stimulants as she did not want to accept the role that competition played in her school. She said that she felt forced and pressured to accept the competition in her school as she felt she could not change the system because of the society within that school.
I felt that the use of different school systems over time helped convey this message. Competition as a Society at large changes and therefore competition within school changes. A great quote that helped me understand this message is that “what used to be an international network of scientific information has been splintered into an arena of competing teams”. This shows how competition for society at large changed into different fields competing against each other and therefore competition within schools changed to different programs/fields competing against each other. A real life example is that there is a divide between programs such as arts, sciences, and engineering which creates competition. This also relates to other articles such as Bateson where they discuss competition against each other and competition to help each other.