The fact that education plays an important role in human development is often ignored. This is a shame, because it's this value that is often most important. Education can help people develop economically, socially, and intellectually. Further, it's not just individuals who benefit from education. Entire communities benefit. In fact, when it comes to the value of education, community investment is extraordinarily important. When a community doesn't value education, the people who become educated often leave. This leads to brain drain, which can impact the socio economic viability of entire regions.
The Economic Benefits of Education
Some people may prickle at the idea of discussing economic benefits in a piece about human development. Yes, a high salary doesn't guarantee that someone becomes improved as a human being, nor does a low one guarantee they won't. Still, the truth is that people who are financially secure have more choices and more opportunities. Education, when it's accessible, is often the one factor that allows people to improve their economic situations.
Individuals benefit from higher salaries. They have fewer economic worries. Because they aren't constantly concerned with economic survival they can focus on personal growth, volunteerism, civic contribution, pursuing interests, self care, and nurturing relationships.
When they stay, educated people also contribute to economic stability. They open businesses. They hire people. They become educators and mentors. They meet the human resource needs of employers. They contribute to the research and other initiatives that increase the wellbeing of the area. They make communities attractive to businesses and investors. They drive wages up.
The Intellectual Benefits of Education
The intellectual benefits of education extend far beyond subject matter expertise. Although, the importance of that should never be diminished. In order for society to progress, we need people with deep expertise in a variety of disciplines. These are the people who use their knowledge to research, innovate, create policies, and make and execute decisions that can have a huge and long lasting impact. Still, there are other important factors to consider:
Education And Critical Thinking Skills
Educated people don't just know about things. They are better able to process information, because they have better critical thinking skills. People use critical thinking to analyze issues, and the information available to them as it relates to that issue. It helps them to:
- Discern good information from bad.
- Identify reliable information sources.
- Conduct research.
- Identify bias.
- Draw conclusions and make inferences.
- Develop curiosity.
Discovery of Talents And Abilities
Education leads to exposure. It's how people are introduced to science, mathematics, literature, philosophy, fine arts, and more. When they spend time immersed in these subjects have the opportunity to discover where their talents and abilities lie. For example, very few talented artists would know the depth of their abilities without spending time in an art classroom.
Of course, it takes more than exposure to make a difference. It requires support and mentorship. It's the students who have access to tutoring, academic writing help from sources like Studicus.com, economic assistance, and family support who are in the best position to identify and pursue their talents.
Identification of Deficits
On the other side of the spectrum, a good educational system also provides students and educators with the tools they need to identify areas of deficit. This includes learning disabilities, mental and emotional health concerns, physical disabilities, and gaps in education. When these are identified, appropriate action can be taken to assist students and provide support.
Improved Memory Cognition And Processing
The phrase, 'the brain is like a muscle' has some pretty solid science behind it. The more people use their brains through studying, researching, discussing ideas, debating, conducting experiments, and testing their knowledge the stronger their brains become. It leads to better memory and recall, improved ability to process information, and leads to faster and better understanding.
Better Communication Skills
When people are learning, they are often called upon to express themselves verbally and in writing. Through this, they pick up better communication skills. They improve their spelling and grammar. Their vocabulary grows. They learn to use language effectively in order to communicate ideas, defend their opinions, and ask questions.
The Social Benefits of Education
There are social benefits to education that impact individuals and communities. The more education is valued and made available, the more these benefits are realized. These include:
If every child in the world simply had basic literacy skills, poverty would be decreased by 12% worldwide. Economic disparities between the rich and poor could be reduced by 39% if there was educational equality. Finally, each additional year of education leads to an average increase in annual income of 10%.
Lowered Crime Rates
A 5% increase in college graduation rates can lead to an 18.7% decrease in homicides. In fact, it is shown in the paper linked that it is education, not employment that seems to have the biggest impact on crime reduction overall. This can be attributed to many factors including, better opportunities, and access to services.
Decreases Child Marriage And Other Forms of Exploitation
Take a look at an society where child marriage, child labor, human trafficking, and other forms of exploitation are common. Poverty and lack of education, especially for young women is nearly always a factor. According to Their World, education can save at risk populations from this exploitation.
Better Health Outcomes
Because education leads to higher salaries, and better understanding of the need for proper healthcare, educated communities generally have better health outcomes. They understand the need for proper medical care, they tend to live in communities where this care is accessible, and their income allows them to access the care that they need.
Education is a great equalizer. It improves standard of living, benefits communities, even protects individuals from abuse and expectation. Improving access to and quality of education leads to better outcomes at every level.