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PROMPT


Universities should require every student to take a variety of courses outside the student's field of study.
Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the claim. In developing and supporting your position, be sure to address the most compelling reasons and/or examples that could be used to challenge your position.


RESPONSE

Universities play a crucial role in shaping the personality of young adults and aid them to survive the ever-increasing competitive world. A student must thrive on being an all-rounder and maximize his breadth of knowledge across various fields apart from his study area.


It is pivotal that students gain knowledge and skill across diverse fields and not restrict themselves to one's specialization/domain. A quick reflection on the work-life of an individual in the technology sector reveals how all fields are convoluted. A CEO of a start-up at silicon valley requires technical knowledge about the product/service their company offers and needs to be aware of how to market it. If it were not for Steve Jobs' creativity, soft skills, marketing strategy, and charismatic personality, Apple would not have become the first trillion-dollar company by stock value as it is today. It is only with a deep understanding of human anatomy and enzymes that researchers at Google's DeepMind created AlphaFold, a neural network to predict the 3D structure of proteins with unprecedented accuracy. How will researchers publish their work without literary knowledge? Hence, juxtaposing various fields and not looking at them as one unified entity is not a sound solution.


There is a pithy saying that when one removes the barriers of keeping oneself restricted to a particular field, the only barrier left is one's imagination. Furthermore, humans' imagination runs wild. The evolution of TED is a perfect example in support of this. It brings to light how innovators and extraordinary speakers, adding up a bit of spice and variety to their field of study, change how the public views it. Taking interdisciplinary courses would aid students in honing their imagination and sense of innovation. It makes people realize the depth at which fields are interrelated. Let us take the blending of psychology with computer science as an example. While developing a social media platform like Instagram, various psychological questions pop up. Is it going to solve the user's problem? How to attract users to use this product? All the questions can be answered by doing research in interviews and surveys and analyzing the psychological traits of people.


Receiving education in various fields will help students adapt to society more quickly. For instance, all citizens of a nation must evaluate the ability of presidential candidates and make a rational decision. Courses on economics and politics would help them analyze what changes these candidates can bring to education, infrastructure, healthcare, and diplomacy.


One might argue that taking up a variety of courses outside one's field of study might qualify one's knowledge in his/her field, thereby violating the fundamentals of specializing at a university. Moreover, forcing students to take up unrelated courses acts as an extra burden and might pressure them. Such stress, undoubtedly, will lead to loss of focus and increase diversion. As a result, the university might be filled with unenthusiastic researchers and bored students. One way to tackle pressurizing the students is to make them aware of the courses that can dovetail with their specialization and let them make their choices, instead of having it as a requirement.


To sum up, I agree that universities should let students take up various courses and explore other domains. This versatility will benefit the students in their research and career and help flourish society.