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Does being a sci fi fan as a college student improve an individual’s critical thinking?

Does being a sci fi fan as a college student improve an individual’s critical thinking?

Scified2019-01-27 13:50:26
3,250 Reads1 Upvotes2 CommentsAdd A Comment+ Upvote

Why College Students Need More Science Fiction

In 1966, the first wireless-ear-to-ear communication device came up in a sci-fi TV series. That same device became known as Bluetooth, some 39 years later.

That’s only one out of a billion examples of how science fiction has changed the world.

Science fiction isn’t about whose lightsaber is better. It’s about ideas, creativity, and innovation. The things that YOU as a college student should have in your mind.

Few college students delve into science fiction. It seems too unrelated to real problems and real life. However, those who do, find themselves empowered by creativity. They turn the world into a playground for technological innovation and social development.

Science Fiction Starts From Reading

Top entrepreneurs and politicians have “reading”  in their daily schedules. They read at least for an hour each day. Reading improves several necessary skills, including focus, memory, critical thinking, and imagination.

As it happens, the most significant medium for science fiction is literature. Sci-fi literature features vivid descriptions of utopias or future worlds, which have traversed into the realms of cinema and brought us classics like Blade Runner. It all comes from sci-fi books.

Students addicted to sci-fi might spend a lot of time watching TV shows or playing video games. They put off their academic writing tasks, or try to find the best assignment writer possible to complete them.

But they say that great writers are great readers first. And sci-fi fills the mind with enough creativity to make every homework assignment easy and fun to write.

Science Fiction Has Changed the World

Science fiction has a rich history very much rooted in reality.

Although sci-fi writing began around the 1930s, it wasn’t until 1968 that the genre started dominating other popular media. With Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, hundreds of thousands of pop artists would traverse into the sci-fi genre. David Bowie even made an album inspired by the film!

The release was followed by the Apollo 8 lunar orbit and landing shortly after. These events made history, inventing some useful everyday technologies such as velcro, zippers, the microwave, wireless communication, leading up to the internet.

And it was the writers who planted the initial seeds of inspiration that gave us the internet. Some say that Ray Bradbury was the first to pin down the idea.

The Ideas of Science Fiction Make Us Think…

As mentioned before, both wireless and video communications were a plot of Star Trek before becoming a reality. Hopefully the same can be said for hoverboards, flying cars, laceless Nikes.

But it’s not only fun products that science fiction has inspired.

Pollution, scarcity of natural resources, metropolises are common themes throughout science fiction — the struggle of the individual in the world of the future. Few would be able to envision an Earth so drained of life as in Blade Runner 2049.

The scariest part is that these worlds as it seems are not too far from reality.

Modern Cliches of Science Fiction Damage Innovation

Philip Byrne of BuzzFeed UK and Jed Hallam of Mindshare, argue that modern sci-fi trends halt technological advancements. Because everything is so “watered-down” and the ideas are unradical in comparison to past sci-fi, we have less truly innovative college graduates.

Old sci-fi like 2001: A Space Odyssey had revolutionary ideas. Hal 9000 from the film is basically Siri. But since science fiction has become mainstream, radical ideas have become watered-down.

A study suggests that new generations of kids have weaker imaginations because of apps. Apps do so much work for us that we forget to think! While kids of the past imagined martian landscapes, kids of the present imagine a good summer vacation.

It’s important to keep real science fiction alive for the sake of humanity. Which leads us to…

Read Sci-Fi To Save Sci-Fi!

If you’re a college student reading this article - then this is a call to action. Head to the bookstore or library and dive into the sci-fi section. Students are in control of the nearest future of technology. And this future cannot be without creative and radical ideas.

Great writers to start with are:

  • Isaac Asimov
  • Arthur C. Clarke
  • Ray Bradbury
  • Robert A. Heinlein
  • Philip K. Dick
  • Aldous Huxley
  • Douglas Adams

Some of these writers would go on to do great deeds. Clarke made essential developments in the field of space satellites. He also helped Stanley Kubrick shoot the adaptation to his book 2001: A Space Odyssey. Asimov developed the Three Laws of Robotics, a work relevant today as it explores the ethics of artificial intelligence.

And so you, dear science fiction fan and student, could gain the power of knowledge from the greats and bring new ideas, innovations to the world.

The Future Is In Your Hands!

*Epic Star Wars scroll text begins*

Real science fiction looks to the future and inspires innovation. Far from the couch-friendly Netflix type of sci-fi, you may know.

With its apparent surge in popularity and “watering down,” sci-fi has entered a safe realm. Without radical ideas, it cannot be a catalyst to change as it has been in the past.

The hope of bringing back the innovative, unsafe, and endlessly creative sci-fi of the past, lies in the hands of college students like you, with access to incredible amounts of information…

Written by ChrisPublished on 2019-01-27 13:50:26
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2 Fan responses to Does being a sci fi fan as a college student improve an individual’s critical thinking?


Jan-27-2019 10:48 PM

This is interesting. Parts of Sci Fi are about relating to the human condition but also a form of escapism from that reality- seems a little strange or ironic perhaps.

It is also interesting to see new things like The Orville that look at modern issues through the old prism of Star Trek. 

While it is interesting to read of studies of a lack of imagination due to apps and other tech, that very issue is covered in great sci fi like Black Mirror.

Good Sci Fi hasn't really changed over the decades regardless of our "advancements". Go back and watch OG Twilight Zone and new Sci fi. Read some Asimov. The really good stuff boils down to great writing, characters and delving into the human condition. Oh- and the mindset sci fi fans have that is different from others who like straight up action, romance, stuff that doesn't expect much except passive observation.

There is a lot of good sci fi out there from our new generation and it is not difficult to find. 

I think sci fi is doing just fine! This from a 50 year old.


Jan-27-2019 10:59 PM

Students addicted to sci-fi might spend a lot of time watching TV shows or playing video games. They put off their academic writing tasks, or try to find the best assignment writer possible to complete them.

That almost suggests a paradox- sci fi fans become less creative from sci fi creators. That would make an interesting sci fi concept story in itself. I don't think it is true though and would have to see some hard peer reviewed data that probably doesn't yet exist?

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