The most common question people ask about depression is 'How do you know the difference between depression and just feeling sad?'. What marks me and all the others who suffer from depression out from people who are just down in the dumps, feeling the weight of the world or having a bit of a crap day? It's an interesting question, not least because it's one that doctors have to deal with on a daily basis.
As soon as the country falls into the mess of recession, that's when the prudence comes in, but by then it's too late. We're used to getting what we want when we want it in this country, and we've provided our own undoing as a result by living beyond our means.
Dr Sally Mapstone of Oxford University suggested that MOOCs were an extension of a lecture based style of higher education, in contrast the the small group teaching they provide at Oxford. There's an implication here about a trade-off between quality higher education and the sort of massive higher education opportunities that MOOCs might offer.
Over the last three years the Coalition Government has mounted savage attacks on teachers' pay, pensions and conditions of service. To justify these attacks and education reforms, the Secretary of State has sought to denigrate teachers and present our public education system as broken. As a result the teaching profession is now in crisis.
With rising tuition fees, Universities culling degree courses and soaring young unemployment, the future looks bleak. There is a great deal of negativity associated with employment opportunities at the moment. So what are your options? And how can you succeed?
Youth unemployment is a dire experience - bringing nothing but acreage of misery, despair and tedium. However it's altogether worse when all of the misery is preventable. Educators in Great Britain are firstly failing to provide young people with the correct career information and then secondly failing to equip them with the necessary skills to actually do the job.
In my first year, I was informed by a tutor that students who had attended independent schools were more likely to be 'confident' and 'well-prepared' than those who had received a state education, and that this would help propel them through their degrees.
The fact is that as a graduate, you realise that on leaving university you are confronted with a ladder infinitely longer, more complex and scarier than the one you had to climb in education. This means that even more optimism and drive is required to tackle it.
when it comes to adult learners making their aspirations a reality, there is a problem. People just don't realise how qualified they already are. A key factor that holds many potential adult learners back when considering pursuing a new qualification is that they don't appreciate that there is value in experience.
Exciting opportunities for young people are thin on the ground, and when we get to a stage when young people are expected to pay for unpaid internships, we truly have witnessed the death of social mobility.
The statistic seems to have gone unnoticed. Is it that universities and colleges are not concerned about catering to the needs of those wanting to study part-time who are mainly adult learners? Or is it that the hike in tuition fees means that for many adult learners education is simply out of reach?
I have to confess that I haven't completely mastered the art of hiding my Attention Deficit as I constantly fidget and am disruptive during long lectures but I do know how I cope with getting my work done to a similar standard as my classmates.
What this proposal really shows is that the matter of achievement is associated only with the acquirement of the higher grades and not when a student is awarded with a grade that corresponds with their potential and effort.
A revolution has happened and over the last decade increasingly many undergraduates want something different. We want to start our own businesses - inevitably small at first, but hopefully large one day.
Sir David Bell, vice-chancellor of the University of Reading, recently smacked down the employability demands. In a riposte he said that it was vital that academics resisted such pressure in order to protect traditional courses; adding that the demands risk undermining the intellectual integrity of degrees.
Youth unemployment is a tragic reality whatever the circumstance, but there is something especially unsavoury about young people who have been sold on the graduate life ideal, only to end up without a job and in debt. The mismarketing of higher education is one of the least commented-upon scandals of our time.