(Not a Chicken Nugget) #1

“There is a growing mountain of research. But there is increased evidence that we are being bogged down today as specialization extends. The investigator is staggered by the findings and conclusions of thousands of other workers—conclusions which he cannot find time to grasp, much less to remember, as they appear. Yet specialization becomes increasingly necessary for progress, and the effort to bridge between disciplines is correspondingly superficial.” (Bush, Vannevar).

The article was a lot of busy reading and I found myself having to go back to reread a good chunk of it; but regardless, I have found a nugget. My interest in this paragraph is based off of a conversation I’ve had with a friend a while ago concerning about becoming handy in different fields vs. having one specific specialty. I remember explaining that I find this to be slightly problematic as an art major; I would love to be skilled in multiple art forms, but in doing so I wouldn’t be putting in as much effort to really pushing my skill to be its greatest. Like Bush stated, I only have so much time and energy that I would have to pick only a few things to be a master at if I wanted to be exceptionally great in those fields. Being multitalented wastes time and energy that could be spent on progressing past what everyone else can do or know.

The art and science fields are not the only ones who are faced with this sacrifice. Many, if not all of us currently attending school have probably seen this before.

5 thoughts on “(Not a Chicken Nugget) #1”

  1. Sarah, I’m with you. I’m an arts student as well. The longer I’m in the program, the more I become exposed to and the more I desperately want to master. Like you and your friend agreed, its just not possible and unfortunately not a good use of time especially if wanting to make a living. I also found this article difficult to read and reread it many times to make sure I was not missing anything. This blurb and the one about man’s shelter, materials, and security improving due it science where the only ones that really stood out that I could relate to.

  2. That is so true. We cannot be multi-talented, if we try to be then we would never be able to reach to the point where we call ourselves specialized. We need to focus on a thing which we can do the best, not on things which we cannot do.

  3. First off, I’m with on you the article. I had to reread it a couple times. Second, I agree with you again. It’s important to be exposed to a lot of different subjects or specialities, but ultimately it’s more useful if you choose one. That way, you have the opportunity to absorb as much information as you could in that one field, a lot more information than if you were to just have a general sense of different specialities.

  4. This struggle is far too real to me. As a fellow arts student, I grappled with this for some time before opting for the Sculpture major, because to me it allowed the most diversity of techniques and processes. It certainly is a tradeoff though, either being a jack of all trades or a master of a select few. There are going to be pros and cons to each. It seems that most of the fellow commenters are in the focusing camp. I’m personally a fan of absorbing everything available and synthesising it into something new. I’m a Biology major as well, so yeah… I have trouble editing my interests.

  5. I wish this was actually a chicken nugget. Anyway, the specialty point you brought up is extremely true in almost every field nowadays. I myself am heading towards the medical field and sometimes I don’t know if it would be better if I focused on pediatric neuropsychology or to become a general physician, just because of how many more patients I could help out in the latter field.

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