I know that many of us have been taught that there is no such thing as a stupid question. If you don’t know something, you should ask. Asking and receiving answers is how you learn new things. And if you don’t ask, you’ll never know. Plus, if you’re in a classroom and a teacher asks if you have any questions, you should be brave enough to raise your hand and ask a question that’s on your mind because (chances are) someone else in the classroom is wondering the same thing you are, but they’re too shy to say so.
Based on the questions I read that come up on Google’s Autocomplete, I’m not so sure that there really is no such thing as a stupid question. And this is coming from the self-proclaimed Queen of Stupid Questions. (I ask Nick the dumbest and most inane questions while we’re watching television or movies… Trust me. But that’s in the comfort of my own home with the person I’m most comfortable with in the world.)
But my question is… Based on the availability and anonymity Google (and other search engines) provide for us, are we, as a society, becoming more informed as a whole? Are we able to learn more new facts? Are we able to ask more questions? Do we feel comfortable typing a question into Google and finding the answer as opposed to admitting to another human being that we don’t know what something is or the definition of a word or what that actor’s name is? Or do we just come up with queries like, “Does that cat really play the keyboard?”
Personally, I know that there are many education buzzwords that I don’t know the meaning of. It happens. Education evolves rapidly and there are so many acronyms, terms, and labels that aren’t always on the top of my head while reading or having a conversation. You can bet that when I don’t know what something means, however, I run and look it up right away! And that way, I can do it without letting anyone know I’m ignorant of anything. I don’t know about you, but I know that I have learned a great deal by asking “the internet” when I’ve been too shy to ask a person.
Questions to Consider:
- Are you comfortable asking a question when you don’t know an answer?
- Does Googling a question make it easier to ask?
- Do you believe there is such a thing as a stupid question?