counter create hit Hacking Your Education: Escape Lectures, Save Thousands, and Hustle Your Way to a Brighter Future - Download Free eBook
Ads Banner
Hot Best Seller

Hacking Your Education: Escape Lectures, Save Thousands, and Hustle Your Way to a Brighter Future

Availability: Ready to download

It’s no secret that college doesn’t prepare students for the real world. Student loan debt recently eclipsed credit card debt for the first time in history and now tops one trillion dollars. And the throngs of unemployed graduates chasing the same jobs makes us wonder whether there’s a better way to “make it” in today’s marketplace. There is—and Dale Stephens is proof of t It’s no secret that college doesn’t prepare students for the real world. Student loan debt recently eclipsed credit card debt for the first time in history and now tops one trillion dollars. And the throngs of unemployed graduates chasing the same jobs makes us wonder whether there’s a better way to “make it” in today’s marketplace. There is—and Dale Stephens is proof of that. In Hacking Your Education, Stephens speaks to a new culture of “hackademics” who think college diplomas are antiquated. Stephens shows how he and dozens of others have hacked their education, and how you can, too. You don’t need to be a genius or especially motivated to succeed outside school. The real requirements are much simpler: curiosity, confidence, and grit. Hacking Your Education offers valuable advice to current students as well as those who decided to skip college. Stephens teaches you to create opportunities for yourself and design your curriculum—inside or outside the classroom. Whether your dream is to travel the world, build a startup, or climb the corporate ladder, Stephens proves you can do it now, rather than waiting for life to start after “graduation” day.


Compare
Ads Banner

It’s no secret that college doesn’t prepare students for the real world. Student loan debt recently eclipsed credit card debt for the first time in history and now tops one trillion dollars. And the throngs of unemployed graduates chasing the same jobs makes us wonder whether there’s a better way to “make it” in today’s marketplace. There is—and Dale Stephens is proof of t It’s no secret that college doesn’t prepare students for the real world. Student loan debt recently eclipsed credit card debt for the first time in history and now tops one trillion dollars. And the throngs of unemployed graduates chasing the same jobs makes us wonder whether there’s a better way to “make it” in today’s marketplace. There is—and Dale Stephens is proof of that. In Hacking Your Education, Stephens speaks to a new culture of “hackademics” who think college diplomas are antiquated. Stephens shows how he and dozens of others have hacked their education, and how you can, too. You don’t need to be a genius or especially motivated to succeed outside school. The real requirements are much simpler: curiosity, confidence, and grit. Hacking Your Education offers valuable advice to current students as well as those who decided to skip college. Stephens teaches you to create opportunities for yourself and design your curriculum—inside or outside the classroom. Whether your dream is to travel the world, build a startup, or climb the corporate ladder, Stephens proves you can do it now, rather than waiting for life to start after “graduation” day.

30 review for Hacking Your Education: Escape Lectures, Save Thousands, and Hustle Your Way to a Brighter Future

  1. 4 out of 5

    Eric

    Personally, I love learning new things. When people ask me what I do with my free time I always tell them I read books! Then they look at me with a dumb stare. What is wrong with these people? I don't get it. Books are awesome! I listen to educational podcasts in the car, sign up for online courses, and watch social psychology videos on YouTube. I'm probably just weird... but I really do like learning new things. But I've never been part of the more traditional learning systems. I was a homescoo Personally, I love learning new things. When people ask me what I do with my free time I always tell them I read books! Then they look at me with a dumb stare. What is wrong with these people? I don't get it. Books are awesome! I listen to educational podcasts in the car, sign up for online courses, and watch social psychology videos on YouTube. I'm probably just weird... but I really do like learning new things. But I've never been part of the more traditional learning systems. I was a homescooler growing up, and when it came time to go to college, I didn't go. Why? Because I was a lazy-ass kid! Of course, I've grown wiser since I was eighteen, and I was thinking about going to college next year, even if I am a bit late. I mean... if you want to get smart, get a good job, and not look like an idiot to society at large, you have to go to college, right? Wrong-o! If you're smart, you can still be a winner without going to college. James Altucher was the guy who first got me thinking about not going to college, and he is a very smart person, so I usually listen when he says something. And this book happened to be the how-to guide for how exactly to succeed. If you don't know what to do, you probably will be the dumb kid who gets stuck with a life of asking if you'd like chips or a drink with that! Trust me, it's not a whole lot of fun. I know. The five most important things you need to know go roughly like so: 1. Get into the right mindset. Learn to love learning, become self-disciplined, and stop waking up at 10:30am. 2. Identify your talents. Find out what you're good at, how you learn best, and learn writing and programming (two super awesome skills to have). 3. Find mentors. Reach out to experts in the fields you want to learn about and get to know them. Take some people out to coffee, add some value to their lives, and get an apprenticeship somewhere while you're at it. 4. Build a network. Go to conferences or other events where wise people hang out, and get good at introducing yourself. Repeat this a lot of times and get a lot of people on your LinkedIn list. 5. Find educational resources. In other words, read a lot of books!! You can also break into college classes or get an even better education by starting a business. Save up some money and give yourself a learning budget that can be spent in a much more effective way than going to college. I love this book, because it's shown just about exactly what I need to do next. I've also been reading a lot of Michael Ellsberg, who thinks along exactly the same lines as these. If you want to go even more into depth on the tougher subjects of building a network and finding mentors, you should probably read everything he's ever written, because that's what I'm doing. In summary - a great book for anybody who wants to get off the beaten path of education and still survive.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jay Alexander Bostwick

    I can't say that I agree with every suggestion Stephens makes in this book. Cold calling influential people you don't know to ask them to get you into a conference that has already started, for example, is a strategy that ought to be handled carefully, if it isn't just an outright really bad idea. But what I really like about Stephens's short book is how it reveals the absurdity of blindly handing your education over to institutions that may not be capable of preparing you for your particular car I can't say that I agree with every suggestion Stephens makes in this book. Cold calling influential people you don't know to ask them to get you into a conference that has already started, for example, is a strategy that ought to be handled carefully, if it isn't just an outright really bad idea. But what I really like about Stephens's short book is how it reveals the absurdity of blindly handing your education over to institutions that may not be capable of preparing you for your particular career and life path, even if you'e lucky enough to find a school that is actually interested in preparing you for life. Stephens's path--which involved dropping out of school at age twelve, and again dropping out of college--is not for everyone, but all young people should be as strategic in planning their own education. Even if this means (gasp!) passing on college.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Eli

    While this book is moderately inspiring I feel like it was written for a very specific niche that I am certain I do not belong to (at least not yet). There is very little in information on "hacking your education". Instead the book offers a lot of advice on networking, making friends, and (oddly) the importance of learning to code. It felt like the author was coming from a place of success and reaching out to already successful people. I'm still getting my life going and figuring things out, I c While this book is moderately inspiring I feel like it was written for a very specific niche that I am certain I do not belong to (at least not yet). There is very little in information on "hacking your education". Instead the book offers a lot of advice on networking, making friends, and (oddly) the importance of learning to code. It felt like the author was coming from a place of success and reaching out to already successful people. I'm still getting my life going and figuring things out, I can't just fly to Germany to speak at a TED conference (an actual "hack of the day" from the book). I don't have anything to say or any major achievements yet, that's why I'm reading this book. Some of the tips and tricks were massively useful: how to write an attention grabbing email subject line, the benefits of rising early, using volunteer positions as learning opportunities, finding mentors, and using peer accountability to reach your goals. All of that was in the first half of the book. The second half focused heavily on networking and hanging out with influential people. It felt like there was an assumption that the reader had already invented the next big social media website or iPhone app and was just trying to go from there. I have nothing to say to the movers and shakers because I have not moved or shaken anything, I'm still learning. Also, I am a very introverted person (INFP) and I would feel rude just emailing strangers and trying to "hack" my way into their social circles. I don't know how helpful this self help book can be for those of us that don't have careers yet. Honestly reading it made me feel self conscious and despondent, I had a sense of already having failed at "hacking" my education because I'm in college and I haven't done anything of note. Or lived in France. I'm off to have a little self-pitying cry fest over all of my nonexistent startups and my student loan debt, read at your own risk.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Joseph McBee

    Excellent book. I would encourage anyone who is near to graduating high school...no, scratch that, I would encourage ANYONE to read this book. Granted, it is written to younger people (say 17-30), but the ideas, principles, and "hacks" that Stephens covers can be applied by anyone at any age. Stephens keeps things interesting too. He understands the need to utilize engaging narrative, to wrap the facts, figures, theory, and practical steps in a story in order to keep his readers turning pages. To Excellent book. I would encourage anyone who is near to graduating high school...no, scratch that, I would encourage ANYONE to read this book. Granted, it is written to younger people (say 17-30), but the ideas, principles, and "hacks" that Stephens covers can be applied by anyone at any age. Stephens keeps things interesting too. He understands the need to utilize engaging narrative, to wrap the facts, figures, theory, and practical steps in a story in order to keep his readers turning pages. To that end, the book is filled with example after example of real people surviving and thriving as "hackademics." They not only show that what Stephens is talking about can be done, it can be done by anyone in pretty much any context. It's downright inspiring. The book also contains challenges for the reader to help apply what Stephens advises. If all that doesn't convince you to read it, then let me leave you with the words of Seth Godin inscribed on the cover: "If you're about to go to college and you don't have the guts to read this book first, you deserve exactly what you end up with instead." Boom.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    This is a quick read, and is most appropriate for young students or parents of students who are considering alternative options for education. I certainly admire the author for his approach - he left school when he was young and has pursued international travel, business ventures, and online courses since - but I have to believe that many young amateurs, even having followed every advice this book suggests, would not likely have a similar, successful outcome. The author's strength is in his extr This is a quick read, and is most appropriate for young students or parents of students who are considering alternative options for education. I certainly admire the author for his approach - he left school when he was young and has pursued international travel, business ventures, and online courses since - but I have to believe that many young amateurs, even having followed every advice this book suggests, would not likely have a similar, successful outcome. The author's strength is in his extroverted and adventurous personality, which no doubt lead him to wonderful mentors and experiences. In short, it takes a certain kind of person to make this type of approach successful. I did appreciate certain ideas for continuing education outside of traditional schooling ventures, and also appreciated the stories of similar hackers the author met along the way. In fact, the greatest success story is the fact that the book itself exists, a model that you should feel compelled to recreate and not simply experience.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Nicholas Tong

    Hacking Your Education: Ditch the Lectures, Save Tens of Thousands, and Learn More Than Your Peers Ever Will provokes the reader to think about the pervading malady that has infected many societies - that is, adopting university description as self-description. Given the unrelenting and rising pressures imposed on the youth to succeed academically, it is unsurprising that individuals forced to participate in this result-oriented rat race has come to value themselves extrinsically by the prestige Hacking Your Education: Ditch the Lectures, Save Tens of Thousands, and Learn More Than Your Peers Ever Will provokes the reader to think about the pervading malady that has infected many societies - that is, adopting university description as self-description. Given the unrelenting and rising pressures imposed on the youth to succeed academically, it is unsurprising that individuals forced to participate in this result-oriented rat race has come to value themselves extrinsically by the prestige of their degrees and academic accomplishments. The author also raises the spectre of thousands of youths unknowingly mortgaging their freedom to innovate away in exchange for a degree, and how the traditional schooling system only enforces the belief on swathes of individuals that they are mediocre even when they could be so much more, a perspective shared by Peter Thiel, co-founder of Paypal. Additionally, the author observes how most students in universities regard their education as a mere insurance policy rather than a form of investment, treating the degree as a mere stepping stone to a job rather than a means of improving themselves, extending the horizons of their perspectives and producing synergistic collaboration with like-minded individuals. On a related point, it is my observation that individuals do not truly realise the high opportunity costs they are invariably paying when they choose to coast along or focus inflexibly on only academics to the disregard of other important facets of education. A large part of educating oneself lies in taking personal accountability to go beyond and above the rigid and limited boundaries of the syllabus so as to extend the lower bounds of one’s potential. And that, I believe, is the central tenet of Hacking Your Education: to effectively and responsibly hack your own education by customising an optimal syllabus for yourself that constantly engages your mind and prevents it from entering into “screensaver mode”. Not only does the book compel you to question the utility of traditional education models by comparing it with its touted “unschooling” model (to find out more visit UnCollege), it also provides several “hacks” for you to start becoming more accountable and productive in your own learning. I will list a few: [1] Set up a brain party: Essentially organising a collaborative learning group to share ideas as well as to challenge and support one another over a regular timeframe e.g. twice a month. [2] To-learn lists: Keep note of the things you want to learn and compile them into a list so that there will always be something you can engage in. A corollary of having ‘to-learn’ lists is ‘to-do’ lists. While the author uses Things on Mac, I personally prefer Stickies because I could then move my notes around. [3] Improve your sleep hygiene: Waking up every day at 6.00am because most productive work can be done between the hours of 6-9am when there are the least distractions. While not everyone may be a morning person, this is a habit followed by many productive artists and novelists of the past (see Daily Rituals: How Artists Work or an infographic of it). [4] Accountability buddy: Exchange five to ten high-level goals with two to three friends for the week. Check with each other the following week to ensure that you have met your goals. [5] Take a person out for coffee: Ask someone you don’t really know well out for coffee. It will teach you a lot on how not to care what other people think and how to have open conversations with anyone. Also, check out how one person made it into a project called 52 Cups of Coffee. All in all, Hacking Your Education is a delightful and insightful read which I highly recommend to everyone, especially students. Also posted on www.anincompletejigsaw.com.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Beata

    Plan to hack "Hacking Your Education" in higher ed setting. The book is full of good ideas that can be easily adapted for developing engaged, life long learners at a university. Once you overlook some of Dale's ethically troublesome suggestions, and some of his explicit language, the book is really insightful and should be a required reading for higher ed faculty and administrators, so they are not out of a job. The author offers a unique millennial perspective on what he considers a valuable ed Plan to hack "Hacking Your Education" in higher ed setting. The book is full of good ideas that can be easily adapted for developing engaged, life long learners at a university. Once you overlook some of Dale's ethically troublesome suggestions, and some of his explicit language, the book is really insightful and should be a required reading for higher ed faculty and administrators, so they are not out of a job. The author offers a unique millennial perspective on what he considers a valuable educational experience. Dale Stephens assembled a nice set of statistics, stories and resources not only for those who consider skipping college, but also for those who run higher education institutions. Recommend it.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Joe Sabado

    Read it! Life-long learning is the underlying message of the book. It's not merely "ditch college". I was pleasantly surprise to read some of the things I am already doing to learn in this book including the use of social learning networks. I won't do everything the author recommend as I don't think they're right but you have to read the book to figure out which ones I may be referring to. Overall - this book is really good.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Afzal

    Wow I just loved this book, super fast paced, easy to read, very practical and written for 2013! I wish I'd read this book 10 years back! If you're a college student or a life long learner or looking for ways to learn a new skill quickly or just to increase your productivity this book is for you.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Briana Ford

    Finished it in a day. Loved it! Had so much great information, tips, and gave me a lot of great ideas. I didn't realize I was an unschooler until he described some of the people he interviewed. I didn't realize I was doing some of these things already. Screw college, hack your education.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jan

    Nice introduction to self-directed learning. Definitely not for anybody. However, if you are disappointed by your formal education and have courage to take over responsibility, Hacking your education will provide you with a framework for your own education.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    the good: yes! a different point of view, a valid point of view. the so-so: did this need to be a book? A good length article would tell me the pertinent data. the bad: lots of filler

  13. 4 out of 5

    C. Patrick G. Erker

    First: props to any author who successfully finishes a book and gets it into readers' hands. It is no doubt a massive effort to bring to life a set of organized, original ideas. That out there, I have to admit that I was underwhelmed with this book, especially given its potential. As part of my reading this year related to work on the future of learning, I've been engaging with content seeking to expand the art of the possible in the education, learning, and work spaces. I recently finished Sal First: props to any author who successfully finishes a book and gets it into readers' hands. It is no doubt a massive effort to bring to life a set of organized, original ideas. That out there, I have to admit that I was underwhelmed with this book, especially given its potential. As part of my reading this year related to work on the future of learning, I've been engaging with content seeking to expand the art of the possible in the education, learning, and work spaces. I recently finished Sal Khan's One World Schoolhouse and Ted Dintersmith's What School Could Be. Both books shared deep personal viewpoints through the lens of a journey, in Khan's case through his own education and the founding of the eponymous academy, and in Dintersmith's case through the country's classrooms and public meeting spaces. Both of those books brought cogent arguments for what the future might look like, and what people can do to get there. Stephens' work, honestly, left something to be desired. Part of it is a style dissonance between author and reader. Stephens' casual tone and frequent, unnecessary cursing, made the book feel unserious, when dealing with what he acknowledges is one of our country's and time's biggest issues (education). But my much more substantial issue with the book is its cherry-picked examples and unreasonable recommendations. Stephens himself seems a wunderkind: clearly very smart, incredibly social, widely read, and hyper-organized, he quit grade school and has gone on to pull together an impressive set of non-traditional credentials. Plus he's written at least one more book than most people (including yours truly). Many of his examples feel more like ways he has managed to hack his education and less like ways others might reasonably do. Making dozens of introduction (10-15 per day!), hosting weekly dinners (and never eating dinner without a group), constantly looking for who matters (about networking: "It's figuring out who you should spend time with getting to know today because they'll be leading the world tomorrow"): all these seem like potentially useful things to do. But who does these things? I also take philosophical / ethical issue with some of his prescribed methods. Attending big lectures at universities? Probably little harm. Actively participating in those classes, as he suggests people do? Of dubious ethical foundation considering the investment other students have made for the teacher, resources, etc. Crashing conferences and sitting outside to meet people? Ok. Trying to take leftover badges from no-shows? Not cool. Guessing emails of important people? Good idea. Lying on your resume? (He doesn't explicitly condone this, but does tell a story of someone doing this, without any opprobrium.) Not something anyone should be even tacitly encouraging. Stephens is openly advocating for free-riding. How many free-riders can the system handle before the value of that being free-ridden isn't worth riding? Stephens could just as easily advocate for a system that encourages people to share scarce resources (in particular professor time and community building activities) vs. one that encourages people to free-ride or steal as much as possible. He could make an impassioned argument for university systems like those in his (and my) state of California to redouble their efforts to provide for career ready citizens, beyond traditional higher ed pathways. But maybe that's just my crotchety mid-30s-self speaking. Ultimately, Stephens is clear that he is arguing for choice in building unique learning pathways and experiences, not about eliminating college. I agree vehemently on this dimension of increased diversity of pathway choice. Students should think carefully about the cost-benefit trade-off for any investment in their development, formal or informal, at a school or not, close to home or far, etc. Stephens is correct that there is a kind of bubble in higher education, with costs having spiraled for decades without corresponding value accretion. (Although the bursting has not happened in the five years since the book was published, it's hard to imagine the education market not continuing its rapid pace of change.) Schools themselves should transform themselves. They should look carefully at where their dollars go, and eliminate unnecessary spending. That expensive new gym? Why? All those administrators? Really adding value to the students and thus society? At the end of the day, Stephens is an example of what education will continue to look like for more and more kids in our country and the world. While I disagree with some of his methods, I am glad that he has taken such a strong stance for reform of a higher ed system in need of it. One disclosure: while I've never met Stephens, I do know members of the leadership team of Year On, which is uncollege.org's successor organization. I've socialized with them and also discussed their business model with one of them. (It's a model which I think is incredibly important as part of the ecosystem of new ideas that need to slosh around in the well of higher ed...)

  14. 4 out of 5

    Rachel Miller Wright

    I sense I’ve just stepped into a wormhole and may not emerge until I’ve read 12 more books on the subject. Firstly, as an aspiring self-promoter and well-established hustler, I found that this book was a timely dose of advice for how to keep advancing when traditional avenues for promotion seem to have stalled. Secondarily, what happens when an intelligent educator reads three books back-to-back that all address, in various ways, the miserable, acute, failure that is American education today? Lo I sense I’ve just stepped into a wormhole and may not emerge until I’ve read 12 more books on the subject. Firstly, as an aspiring self-promoter and well-established hustler, I found that this book was a timely dose of advice for how to keep advancing when traditional avenues for promotion seem to have stalled. Secondarily, what happens when an intelligent educator reads three books back-to-back that all address, in various ways, the miserable, acute, failure that is American education today? Look for me on the blogosphere; I’m tempted to publish my reflections more formally after reading this book.

  15. 4 out of 5

    KieraK

    I read through this quickly and its full of good hacks. I do think you have to be willing to not play it safe to use his hacks but he has very good points about tge college system not really being all that useful as it is. What person do you know that is actually using their degree in their field of study? Or are we just sold on the fact that college is what you have to do? I don't think IMO that it is a system producing people who are skilled at jobs that are available. What will fix that? Ther I read through this quickly and its full of good hacks. I do think you have to be willing to not play it safe to use his hacks but he has very good points about tge college system not really being all that useful as it is. What person do you know that is actually using their degree in their field of study? Or are we just sold on the fact that college is what you have to do? I don't think IMO that it is a system producing people who are skilled at jobs that are available. What will fix that? There are also good career switch questions and techniques within the pages. The most humorous thing would be that the author would think a 24 year old to be old.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Lucis

    It had some good ideas on how to self-educate, but a lot of the book was anecdotes about people the author had met and a whole LOT of fluff (using the same drawn out phrasing more than once in a paragraph for instance..) Regardless, if you're interested in self-directed education, the second and third chapters had the most valuable information, I found. Either way, I'm glad I read the book; there are quite a few resources and ideas that I wouldn't have otherwise known about.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    What can you say about a book that shows you how to get a real education for way less than the outrageous price of going to college? There were so many resources I didn't even knew existed before reading this book. You literally can get a full education through the cost of just paying for internet service at home, or if you want to go completely free, use free wi-fi spots located anywhere. Dale Stephens is someone that more and more parents need to start raising. Parents today make their kids foc What can you say about a book that shows you how to get a real education for way less than the outrageous price of going to college? There were so many resources I didn't even knew existed before reading this book. You literally can get a full education through the cost of just paying for internet service at home, or if you want to go completely free, use free wi-fi spots located anywhere. Dale Stephens is someone that more and more parents need to start raising. Parents today make their kids focus so much on getting into an amazing college that they miss out on their childhood and teen years. I know parents that make their teens spend half their summers stuck in SAT prep classes while spending thousands of dollars just because they want to give their kid an advantage. An advantage would be to use that money instead and send their kid to another and learn about living on their own instead of spending a whole month all day during the week taking SAT prep tests over and over. That's not anyone special in the future. Dale is one of those rare special young people who grow up with a head already on their shoulders knowing what they want to do with themselves. He convinced his parents to let him live in Paris on his own when he was just 16 and he figured out how to pay for it all by himself. It's very rare to find a teenager who already knows how to navigate the world on their own. Most parents have conditioned their teens to be so dependent on them that they are not able to think for themselves in anyway except to ask for money so they can buy the material goods they want. And you want to spend thousands of dollars sending a kid like that to college? In this book, if you are struggling with going to college, or deciding whether or not to go to college, this book will show you that connecting with people, sharing your talents, and then teaching them to other people is what having an education is all about and it doesn't make a difference where you got it. There are resources online that will connect you with some very important people in this world who make themselves available to talk with over the phone without any cost. Need to learn only one lesson and not pay for all the BS colleges make you pay for, this book will show you have to get only the education you want. If you are really serious about getting an amazing education, read this book and then "Don't Go Back to School." Your eyes will be opened to have you can get a better education than a Harvard grad and save all that money. Another great book to read is "The Education of Millionaires." You will probably learn more about how colleges are undercutting themselves by creating MOOC programs by reading this book then reading the list of top colleges in the the US. You will learn more about how getting an education is easier by reading this book than actually attending an expensive college, and if you checked out this book from a library and saved all the resources this book has to offer about getting a real education that will beat any IVY league degree, then you can count yourself as smarter than all those shelling out thousands of dollars by going there. Bottom Line: Get Your hands on this book and read it. Give it to a kid in school who thinks learning doesn't have to be this way. Give it to any teenager who wants to do great things with their life and give it to the parents who think you have to make your kid spend hours doing homework everyday after school because, damn it, they aren't helping their kids one bit.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Malin Friess

    The average college student is in debt $27,250. A 50 minute college class (assume college cost of 42k per year) costs $250!!! Yikes. Why does a college education cost more than a house? Student Debt now eclipses credit card debt. 50% of these students don't graduate and take on significant debt without a degree to show for it. 54% of young people between 18-24 are unemployed. So Stephens asks: Why go to College? Stephens dropped out of school at age 12 and began "unschooling" not homeschooling. H The average college student is in debt $27,250. A 50 minute college class (assume college cost of 42k per year) costs $250!!! Yikes. Why does a college education cost more than a house? Student Debt now eclipses credit card debt. 50% of these students don't graduate and take on significant debt without a degree to show for it. 54% of young people between 18-24 are unemployed. So Stephens asks: Why go to College? Stephens dropped out of school at age 12 and began "unschooling" not homeschooling. He is one of those creative/techy guys who lives in Silicon Valley and has already started 3 companies and then sold them before he turned 30. Stephens makes a good point that a college degree has become devalued and no longer guarantees a job. Of course, Stephens conceeds that if you want to go into a field like Law, Medicine, Engineering, Teaching..etc...then get yourself to college because a degree is required. But if you are uncertain what you want to do or are more business minded--you can hack your education on your own. So how can you hack your education? Stephens has some creative suggestions: 1) Ask important people out for coffee (much like the girl who wrote the book 52 cups of coffee and met with celebrites, senators, etc). If you can't get a hold of these people--try to guess their e-mail address with different iterations of their name ([email protected], [email protected], [email protected]) you would be suprised how often it works and how frequently they accept your offer (My Yahoo address would be really easy to guess). A $500 dollar coffee budget will buy you a lot of education. 2) Get use to rejection. Ask people on the street for $100 dollars again and again until you are use to getting rejected. 3) Be ready to put off enjoying nice cars, clothes, homes..live on Ramen Noodles. 4) Save up $500 dollars and travel. Buy a one way ticket somewhere. Learn the language. Go to Couchsurfers.org and live cheaply. To Survive in a foreign culture is a great education. 5) Go find College professors and ask if you can sit in on lectures--audit classes for free. 6) The paper resume is archaic. Everyone should have their own website and be linkedin. 7) Write a blog. Practice writing everyday. 8) Don't be afraid to cold call, text, or e-mail someone. You have to put something catchy in the subject line or it will be deleted 9) Figure out what type of learner you are. There are 4 types: visual, aural, read/write, and kineshetic. The book as a simple test. I'm a read/write and visual learner. I like to read books about things and see diagrams. Now I know why I struggled to learn Swahilli from our teacher. We had no text-book or written words. I struggled to pick up the oral lectures. 4 stars. If you are 18-24 and not sure what you want to do or are entrepreneurial minded....look into hacking our education. Do I need to rethink my children's 529 plan??

  19. 5 out of 5

    Carl Wade

    Front Cover: Author founded uncollege.org. Pg i: College problems include higher costs, vague credentials, grim job prospects and crippling debt. Pg xi: What's this about a boyfriend? Pg xiii: Class costs $250 per hour. Comes out to 27k in debt. 44.4% of grads under 25 are unemployed or working outside a degree. Pg 7: Resource "Debt-free U" by Zac Bissonnette, College is free in Finland even for international students. Maybe Deanna needs to find a friend that lives in Finland. Pg 8: Nonlicensed profe Front Cover: Author founded uncollege.org. Pg i: College problems include higher costs, vague credentials, grim job prospects and crippling debt. Pg xi: What's this about a boyfriend? Pg xiii: Class costs $250 per hour. Comes out to 27k in debt. 44.4% of grads under 25 are unemployed or working outside a degree. Pg 7: Resource "Debt-free U" by Zac Bissonnette, College is free in Finland even for international students. Maybe Deanna needs to find a friend that lives in Finland. Pg 8: Nonlicensed professions may not be a good investment to be in college. Pg 9: Universities exist to make money not train. He connects homeschooling and unschooling. Pg 16: Go to college only if you know what you want to do. Pg 17: One word activity from Sandee Kastrul of I.C. Stars. One mission in life, five gifts you have, ten occupations that use them, five ways to fortify those occupations. Nice try; but there must be a better way. Words from the Bible reading of the day perhaps? Pg 73: New careers don 't require degrees nor created careers. Pg 74: Good idea volunteering to see if you may like the job. Deanna as a farmers wife, honey farm on farmers market day, teaching at the Korah. Pg 54: He tells how to get a personal website. Sounds easy when he says it. Pg 80: He tells how to start a blog. Pg 87: Resource; www.collegeboard.com. I go to events OK; basketball at Northwest University. Pgt 129: When you don't have a college degree, you don't apply for jobs. Your are referred through your network. If you want a job don't just send a resume. Look up the people you will be working for and find who you both know. Pg 138: Start a salon; I don't like the word salon since I'm a barber but he has a good idea. Use facebook event to create a learning group. Are you getting this? Better read the book. Pg 147: Here is a guy that used couch Surfing just like one Betty's friends. Resource; www.couchsurfing.org. Pg 149: I used to crash classed at Western with Mike and also Betty. Pg 150: Here is something that is popular with young people: Incubators. Kind of a Kinkco for startups. How would missions/church startups fit in here? Resource: www.hackerspaces.org. How about a dress shop for Deanna? She was a dress makers helper and likes fashion sites. Is this something oujr new Governor knows about? Pg 159: Resource book: "The $100 Startup". Pg 160: The average cost of attending the cheapest, instate, public university is $17,131. What could you do with that? Pg 174: There has always been exceptional people and people with connections. These people don't need college and may be a waste of time. Pg 181: There is a bubble in Education and it's on the brink of bursting.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Brandon Baggett

    I really wanted to give this four-stars, but I couldn't. Why, because this book lacks professionalism. You can write a book, include a piece of yourself, and still include yourself without foul language. Granted, this occurred only once every nine or ten pages. But in a professional world, that just isn't acceptable. Alright, now that I have got my big gripe out of the way, I can go on to extoll the things that I loved about the book. 1 - Creating your own future. He is all about people getting I really wanted to give this four-stars, but I couldn't. Why, because this book lacks professionalism. You can write a book, include a piece of yourself, and still include yourself without foul language. Granted, this occurred only once every nine or ten pages. But in a professional world, that just isn't acceptable. Alright, now that I have got my big gripe out of the way, I can go on to extoll the things that I loved about the book. 1 - Creating your own future. He is all about people getting hands on with what they want in life. There is no greater advice that anyone could give. Do you want to do something? Great, research it, learn it, do it, live it. No one else will do this for you. 2 - Love Education. That is right, love it. The educational system we have now might not fulfill those needs, but there are tons of other great ways to get enlightenment. He delves with tons of ways that we can develop our minds by interacting with technology and those around us. 3 - Resources. He has a ton of great places that you can go to to further your love of education. From simple ones like the library to more underground programing groups that only cater to females in the New York City area, he demonstrates how to figure out what you need to do to get the learning experiences that you want. 4 - Daily Hacks. He puts out goals for people to follow to help improve their daily living. I always like to see what other people are doing so that I can compare my own goals to them, so this was an added bonus. If you don't do anything to improve your life right now, then he gives some ideas to start doing it now. If you are about to start college, this is a must read. If you are a parent wondering what is the best thing for your kids going through the educational system, this is a must read. If you want to know how you can better your own personal education, this is a must read.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Debbie

    “For those who have absolutely no idea of their interests, a four-year institution is a waste of money and time.” Dale J. Stephens This quote is from the twenty-one year old college dropout and author on the book. He is also founder of the website and movement, UnCollege. Stephens insists he is not advocating that young people don’t go to college, but is suggesting students only go to college if they know what they want to study and why. Seems reasonable enough. Yet Stephens argument and advice f “For those who have absolutely no idea of their interests, a four-year institution is a waste of money and time.” Dale J. Stephens This quote is from the twenty-one year old college dropout and author on the book. He is also founder of the website and movement, UnCollege. Stephens insists he is not advocating that young people don’t go to college, but is suggesting students only go to college if they know what they want to study and why. Seems reasonable enough. Yet Stephens argument and advice for hacking your education lacks credibility. Yes he is a college dropout and hacked his education, but he is also a Thiel Fellow, a recipient of a $100,000 award through a program for college dropouts. The $100,000 award allowed Stephens to explore what he wanted to do, hack is education as part of a two-year program to “skip college and focus on their work, their research, and their self-education” [thielfellowship.org]. Though after reading more on the Thiel website, it appears that entrepreneurship is the focus. And Stephens did take the entrepreneurship route by founding UnCollege and writing his book. The Message in Hacking Your Education However, there is message within the book and website that is worth examining, both for higher education institutions and parents. The main message when delving further and reading between the lines, is how differently these kids think—how education [even employment] methods, norms and traditions don’t align with their values and desires. You can read the entire post on my blog at Online Learning Insights, http://wp.me/p1N30w-1W2

  22. 5 out of 5

    Julian Patton

    I'm going to praise the life out of this book. I read this book when I was at a cross roads in life and started to question the education system. Now I see my questions were valid. College is bullshit. I'm planning to drop out get a job as a computer programmer, but I have to say even though this book has taught college is bullshit. I don't think college is a waste of time. A lot of the things that Dale Stephens teaches you that you can do in this book, you can do while you're in college, and th I'm going to praise the life out of this book. I read this book when I was at a cross roads in life and started to question the education system. Now I see my questions were valid. College is bullshit. I'm planning to drop out get a job as a computer programmer, but I have to say even though this book has taught college is bullshit. I don't think college is a waste of time. A lot of the things that Dale Stephens teaches you that you can do in this book, you can do while you're in college, and that is where the true beauty of the book comes from. This isn't a book advocating that college sucks and that we should all teach ourselves. This is a book teaching you that college isn't all its cracked up to be and there are alternatives, and Dale isn't just pulling shit out of his ass either. This guy has facts with sources, and real life examples of people who've succeeded and struggled with life not being college. Honestly what more could you ask for. If you're going to college read this book. If you're not sure about college read this book. If you've already graduated college have an open mind.. and read this book. You will not regret it.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Camille Dent

    Superb. Some places needed a better editing job where a word was added or omitted accidentally, but the actual content of this book is fantastic despite a few technical errors. First of all, this book is not meant to be an explicit encouragement to ditch college. It's simply to show people that there are other options out there that may, despite what our parents and teachers want us to think, be more effective than sitting through classes. As an aspiring high school teacher, I literally do need a Superb. Some places needed a better editing job where a word was added or omitted accidentally, but the actual content of this book is fantastic despite a few technical errors. First of all, this book is not meant to be an explicit encouragement to ditch college. It's simply to show people that there are other options out there that may, despite what our parents and teachers want us to think, be more effective than sitting through classes. As an aspiring high school teacher, I literally do need a degree to legally teach in public schools, but this book is still very encouraging to those of us who really do NEED college. This book is about getting the most out of whatever you have, whether for you that means sitting through classes or being bold enough to jump straight into a job, internship, or apprenticeship. This book gave me the courage to email an influential person to discuss a project I've been contemplating for a while and made me realize the importance of the efforts I make outside of my classes. I highly recommend this to anyone who is interested in education or self-edification in general.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Steve

    This was a worthwhile read. Mainly geared for folks who haven't started families, though. I definitely agree that when you are young, you should not limit your opportunities or believe that college is the "end all, be all". My outlook on college when I graduated was more like, "now the real work begins". I just wish that I would have taken more classes during the semesters and graduated a little earlier so I could do my real work. Contrary to what parts of this book say, I do believe that some co This was a worthwhile read. Mainly geared for folks who haven't started families, though. I definitely agree that when you are young, you should not limit your opportunities or believe that college is the "end all, be all". My outlook on college when I graduated was more like, "now the real work begins". I just wish that I would have taken more classes during the semesters and graduated a little earlier so I could do my real work. Contrary to what parts of this book say, I do believe that some college experience is a bonus, even if it's only a few years at a community college. Although you can learn just about anything using a library and the internet, some formal schooling can beef up your resume. After all, not everyone is going to create their own industries when they venture out on their own. The points that folks should definitely take from this book are: 1) Use the public library system. 2) Never stop learning 3) Have courage to try new things - even if it means picking up and moving to a foreign country to get a job and experience a new culture.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kayla

    This was a spur of the moment pick up in the vein of The Teenage Liberation Handbook. As my last few classes of college at NMC play out and I start thinking about this coming year where I am going to be really out of school and maybe not return, it was a godsend. College is only what you make it -- it doesn't owe you anything. Going to class isn't going to get you a job, making connections is. It puts you in a place with a lot of interesting professors and motivated people in a new community. It This was a spur of the moment pick up in the vein of The Teenage Liberation Handbook. As my last few classes of college at NMC play out and I start thinking about this coming year where I am going to be really out of school and maybe not return, it was a godsend. College is only what you make it -- it doesn't owe you anything. Going to class isn't going to get you a job, making connections is. It puts you in a place with a lot of interesting professors and motivated people in a new community. It stressed the importance of making these connections no matter where you are. With the new market young people can't afford to depend on others for jobs and income, they have to be able to guarantee them themselves. By creating a public portfolio, having weekly goals and an accountability partner, and by talking to people (because that always leads to more connections). Be resourceful. Be dependable. Don't take no. Don't slow down.

  26. 5 out of 5

    emma

    Obviously I'm in the minority of readers, but this was disappointing and kind of dumb. I got really excited, seeing this book, because it's what I'd love to do. Except this book is about HOW to Uncollege, not how to get a job out of it. I know I CAN uncollege… it wouldn't be hard for me. But how do I get a job out of not going to college? I mean, is 'getting a job' really a BAD reason for going to college? Um, no. Oh right, you can get a job if you make an app that someone happens to like and gives Obviously I'm in the minority of readers, but this was disappointing and kind of dumb. I got really excited, seeing this book, because it's what I'd love to do. Except this book is about HOW to Uncollege, not how to get a job out of it. I know I CAN uncollege… it wouldn't be hard for me. But how do I get a job out of not going to college? I mean, is 'getting a job' really a BAD reason for going to college? Um, no. Oh right, you can get a job if you make an app that someone happens to like and gives you more money than your parents combined. Note To Self: Create amazing app to get rich. Or write a blog about Apple products and speak at conventions about Apple products and then Apple will surely hire me. I'd call that luck. Not the answer/method for everyone. I am so confused at the great reviews.

  27. 4 out of 5

    James Cripps

    I love it for being something that came out at the exactly right time for me, when I dropped out of university. But I've got the same complaints with this book that I have with many books also in this category. San Francisco/Silicon Valley is a hell of a lot different to the rest of the world. Or to be more general, not everywhere is the USA. Furthermore, you always get told the success stories. Never mind what were the colossal mistakes, just make it look like people get it right all the time. I love it for being something that came out at the exactly right time for me, when I dropped out of university. But I've got the same complaints with this book that I have with many books also in this category. San Francisco/Silicon Valley is a hell of a lot different to the rest of the world. Or to be more general, not everywhere is the USA. Furthermore, you always get told the success stories. Never mind what were the colossal mistakes, just make it look like people get it right all the time. I really want to believe this could work for anyone, but sadly most stories are failures. Something that is easy to forget. I think we'd all do well to throw a big handful of salt on this one.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Nichola

    This enthusiastic self-schooler grows up, and realizes he can continue to create his own learning experiences. Not an approach for the timid, he still does a great job of encouraging people to get out there and do what they want. I particularly liked his suggested practical excercises- learning how to fail, expanding your network by taking people out for coffee, writing cold emails, and requesting internships that aren't already established. His conference startegies seem workable for anyone, bu This enthusiastic self-schooler grows up, and realizes he can continue to create his own learning experiences. Not an approach for the timid, he still does a great job of encouraging people to get out there and do what they want. I particularly liked his suggested practical excercises- learning how to fail, expanding your network by taking people out for coffee, writing cold emails, and requesting internships that aren't already established. His conference startegies seem workable for anyone, but I got a little nervous when he talked about applying for jobs without the stated required degree. Its a good antidote for admissions anxiety, where you really really hope some system will choose you as the winner. This book encourages self direction and action.

  29. 5 out of 5

    18dh02

    I would recommend this book to anyone out there, not just to those who are going to college. This is a very unique book written by an Unschooler named Dale J. Stephens. Inside it talks about how you can learn outside the classroom, take advantage of the resources possessed, and develop your full potential before going to college. Unschooling means for someone to be completely detached from any school systems or teachings and is purely self driven in their studies, and studies to their interests. I would recommend this book to anyone out there, not just to those who are going to college. This is a very unique book written by an Unschooler named Dale J. Stephens. Inside it talks about how you can learn outside the classroom, take advantage of the resources possessed, and develop your full potential before going to college. Unschooling means for someone to be completely detached from any school systems or teachings and is purely self driven in their studies, and studies to their interests. This way they are able to develop with the creativity and initiative that no other person who attends college can have. This book helped me out a lot and I believe it will do the same for you, so read!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Andrew

    I have to say this book really surprised me. I had low expectations about this book and almost did not read it. However, it was much better that expected. Stephens does a great job helping the reader to understand him, his unique background, and the idea of Hacking Life in general. Granted, I believe the book is aimed at a younger demographic than me, but this is still a fascinating read at any age. Stephens is a hyper-social wunderkind and I have to say that I learned a lot from him in this qui I have to say this book really surprised me. I had low expectations about this book and almost did not read it. However, it was much better that expected. Stephens does a great job helping the reader to understand him, his unique background, and the idea of Hacking Life in general. Granted, I believe the book is aimed at a younger demographic than me, but this is still a fascinating read at any age. Stephens is a hyper-social wunderkind and I have to say that I learned a lot from him in this quick read. Stephens' path is not for all teenagers, but for parents of brilliant children, this book should be a must-read.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.