Stormy wrote:Why not pick on someone with a masters in poetry or philosophy or whatever? Each one has differing requirements, utilizing different skills.
I have no objections to non-science Master's degrees. A Master's in History, Philosophy, or English is brutally difficult for most people to attain. They might not be worth as much in the non-government job market as is a Masters in Engineering or the hard sciences, but that doesn't mean they're invalid pursuits. My specific objection is to the Masters in Education credential. There are accredited universities that are eager to hand them out for very little course work (less than a summer's worth in many cases) and no useful research. (My favorite anecdote regarded the Thesis Advisor at, I think Cambridge College in Mass., that apparently didn't even read a reporter's thesis--it was all blank except for the cover.) The primary criteria is that your check must not bounce. (Not a problem usually since it's a school district's check.) But just like with a Masters in Math, a public school teacher's pay goes up if they possess a phony Masters credential.
Stormy wrote:I've seen some amazing scientists who can't put together a decent paragraph, let alone an email or memo, etc.
I've seen plenty of that in engineering and science, especially among recent college graduates. However the very best of the technical people that I've known in industry are usually quite good at both written and verbal presentation of their ideas--to non-scientists as well as their peers.