Beloit Mindset List, Class of 2014

Students entering college today have never worn a wristwatch and think email is slow.

The annual Beloit College Mindset List, released each August since 1998 to remind faculty members how old they are, has been released for the Class of 2014.

Some that I find particularly interesting:

1. Few in the class know how to write in cursive.

2. Email is just too slow, and they seldom if ever use snail mail.

11. John McEnroe has never played professional tennis.

12. Clint Eastwood is better known as a sensitive director than as Dirty Harry.

14. Doctor Kevorkian has never been licensed to practice medicine.

16. Korean cars have always been a staple on American highways.

21. Woody Allen, whose heart has wanted what it wanted, has always been with Soon-Yi Previn.

28. They’ve never recognized that pointing to their wrists was a request for the time of day.

32. Czechoslovakia has never existed.

39. Pizza jockeys from Domino’s have never killed themselves to get your pizza there in under 30 minutes.

50. Toothpaste tubes have always stood up on their caps.

67. Ruth Bader Ginsburg has always sat on the Supreme Court.

I wasn’t aware that cursive writing had died, although my own ability to write in longhand is shot to hell.   And, while I’ve all but stopped wearing a wristwatch myself, it hadn’t really occurred to me that the younger generation never started.

Hat tip:  AP

FILED UNDER: Education, Popular Culture, Quick Takes
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Every year this list comes out it always seems like they’re just reaching for stuff, much of which probably doesn’t even mean anything to college freshman today, like:

    “6. Buffy has always been meeting her obligations to hunt down Lothos and the other blood-suckers at Hemery High. ”

    Huh ? Buffy The Vampire Slayer went off the air seven years ago, when these guys and gals were 11. I doubt they’ve ever even watched it.

  2. James Joyner says:

    Yeah. And they also recycle stuff from past lists in slightly different form. Maybe they should cap the list at, say, 25 items to have a higher winners ratio.

  3. Plus, I have to wonder about accuracy.

    For example, lots of toothpaste tubes still look exactly like they did when I first started brushing my teeth (they don’t all stand on their caps).

    And, while I think there is a trend away from wristwatches (I have used my phone as a pocket watch of sorts for years).

    Cursive is dying, but I suspect that rumors of its death are greatly exaggerated .

    And one suspects that a lot of kids still have seen older Clint Eastwood movies. While I take the point about pop culture, the list often pretends like the past is sealed in some vault rather than playing on cable TV.

  4. James Joyner says:

    And one suspects that a lot of kids still have seen older Clint Eastwood movies. While I take the point about pop culture, the list often pretends like the past is sealed in some vault rather than playing on cable TV.

    Indeed. One of the remarkable innovations of the last five years or so is that the distinction between “old” and “new” TV shows and movies is almost non-existent.

    For example, Katie is starting to enjoy “The Backyardigans,” which debuted on Noggin (now Nick Jr) back in 2006. Since the network constantly churns episodes and we can TiVo them, there’s literally no distinction between new ones and those from the first season. They’re just episodes.

    Similarly, we frequently watch entire runs of shows that are now defunct or into their 3rd or 4th season from scratch via Netflix, Roku, or download. It’s entirely immaterial when the shows came out or on what network they aired.

  5. Franklin says:

    One of the remarkable innovations of the last five years or so is that the distinction between “old” and “new” TV shows and movies is almost non-existent.

    Agreed. My kid is excited when a ‘new’ episode of Tom & Jerry is available on demand.