Literate vs Well-Educated is a phrase I commonly use when insulting my friends, but despite the low-hanging insult fruit, this phrase does carry a lot of weight.
Now, yes there is a basic difference between being Literate and being Well-Educated. For the sake of this article, I am going to break down the Literate vs Well-Educated debate right here and use the rest of this article as an explanation for it.
What does being Literate and Educated mean?
A Literate is someone who possesses the ability to read and write, while an Educated is a person who has acquired knowledge and skill. People often use the two words interchangeably and with reason since they do have a few similarities.
Literate vs Well-Educated:The Link
Both literacy and education require hard work and persistence, and you need both to become a functioning part of society.
Literacy gives you the tools that you will need to gain more information from the world by being able to communicate with teachers who will teach you more. Education is what these teachers will provide.
Literacy gives access to Education—a person who is not literate will have a hard time become educated.
However, it is worthy to note that you can acquire Education without Literacy; considering the fact that education is more than meets the eye.
What is Education?
Let’s get this out of the way; education is not just about your books. Learning a sport or how to use some equipment is also education. Literacy is important since you need to be able to understand the person who is teaching you.
However, it is very much possible to become well-educated without becoming literate.
Education, in a greater sense, is the development of the being whereas Literacy is a part of Education itself.
Here is an example article of unconventional but important education.
Literate vs Well-Educated: An Easy Example
A very simple example is the best way to illustrate the Literate vs Well-Educated debate. A literate can read news articles on corruption, extortion, lynching, etc., but only an educated person understands why it is wrong.
We often refer to teachers as Educators, yes even your English teachers. This is so because they educated you to become literate, enforcing my point that literacy is a step towards Education.
A lot of crimes happen simply due to a lack of Education. People who do not know any better, try to do what they think is best for them.
People who do not know any better often make bad/uninformed choices which only lead to negative circumstances that hurt everyone involved.
This is why education is important because it teaches us about morality and altruism; it informs us on how we can be happy. Education is a person’s journey towards differentiating right from wrong.
Education is, therefore, about becoming a Human.
The Different Kinds of Education
You can divide Education is into, several different classes. Becoming a scientist means you are educated, but becoming a public speaker is also, in a sense, the same.
The way I see it, Education is when you acquire knowledge along with the ability to apply this knowledge for the benefit of everyone [No, cheating in Exams is still not cool].
For example: If you learn a mathematical equation and are able to apply that equation beyond just the questions in the book, that make you educated.
A different side of Education is the previously-discussed human element. Think of it this way. What is the point of being educated if you do not use your education to improve yourself and others around you?
I like to believe that this mindset is the reason that we think of Education so highly. We all want improvement but not everyone is capable of improving on their own. That is why the educated person gets so much importance.
I just feel that, at some point, we confused the words educated and literate.
The Different Kinds of Literacy
Literacy also has different kinds; again, not easy to differentiate, unfortunately.
Looking at it from far away, literacy seems to be associated with having exclusively bookish knowledge of facts without having any associated knowledge towards it.
Use that as an insult for that one friend who is extremely good at trivia; we all have one.
Literacy is a tool; you need to be literate to read a novel but educated to understand what the author is trying to convey. Let us come back to the Math problem example.
If you know a formula but do not know how to use it beyond just what the book teaches, it is pointless in the grand scheme of things to know a formula like that. Schools generally have an imbalance where they teach you to be literate more than educated.
You might have a degree but if you do not put it to use beyond wearing it like a badge of honor, then there is no point. Remember that most jobs require an educated person rather than a literate person; since you need the ability to dynamically apply the knowledge you have.
Literacy is also often associated with cramming information. Here is a great article that takes a deep dive into the world of cramming.
The conclusion is clear folks, I am pretty sure you can derive a few good insults at least from this article but yeah.
We should Strive to be Educated, to paraphrase a great movie.
Do not run after success; run after Excellence.3 idiots
Of course, my article on its own might not convince you, so here is another article of the same to help you for an opinion.
In a world like ours, we/you need to be educated, simply because education teaches us to be human. What do you think? Safe Travels Friend.