Creative Education
2011. Vol.2, No.5, 458-460
Copyright © 2011 SciRes. DOI:10.4236/ce.2011.25066
Optimizing Academic Education: Philosophies for
Creative Quality Lives
Meysam Nikkhah, Akbar Nikkhah
Department of Animal Sciences, University of Zanjan, Zanjan, Iran.
Received August 18th, 2011; revised September 24th, 2011; accepted September 30th, 2011.
The objective is to delineate postmodern learning and mentoring interrelation, elite-thinker-generating skills de-
velopment, optimum mentor-staff-mentee interactions, mentors’ soci-economic security, and advanced mentor-
ship evaluation strategies. Education is a foremost cause to find merits in life. Advancements in science and
technology result from improved education. For creative science education to achieve optimums, it must be im-
proved globally. Science and technology mentors must be continually educated and updated with artistic and
creative mentorship skills. Effective education will optimize social interactions. Efforts should be made to opti-
mize mentor-staff-mentee interactions in academia to effectively facilitate education and improve science qual-
ity. Effective mentorship requires making policies for effective management of mentors’ time and socio-eco-
nomic life. Theoretical and applied aspects in different majors need to be educated in integrated manners to gen-
erate multiple perspectives. Focusing on a single science without appreciating the multiple nature of science will
no longer advance scientific accomplishments in the postmodern era. Mentees should be directed to gain exper-
tise in multiple sciences in ways an artist gains excellence in multiple arts. Har mony makes higher quality arts,
science and life. A devastating failure would be producing follower graduates who despite having high scores in
written tests are unable to mentor, design, direct, conduct, and conclude experiments that aim to sustain and ad-
vance science. Postmodern mentees are to be provided with opportunities to simultaneously act as mentor and
mentee to appreciate their unique responsibilities. Improved education will improve social economics and hu-
man life quality worldwide.
Keywords: Science, Educ a t ion, Mentorship, Aca d emia, Postmodern
Effective education leads human life. Education systems
quality determines human life quality. From birth to death,
human is exposed to an environment whose education proper-
ties determine human’s lifespan accomplishment. As such,
advancements in the science of science education is under
greatly increasing research and policy-making focuses (Alberts,
2008, 2009a, 2009b, 2009c). Education for sustainable future
will not be less important than food for continuing life (Nik-
khah, 2011a). The primary objective of this perspective article
is to delineate postmodern learning and mentoring interrela-
tionships, elite-thinker-generating skills development, optimum
mentor-staff-mentee interactions, mentors’ soci-economic se-
curity, and advanced mentorship evaluation strategies. These
academic philosophies will all require deserving thought, time,
and financial investments to optimize creative life qualities in
societies worldwide.
Postmodern Learning-Mentoring Interrelations
Learning is a mental process with unique interacting ele-
ments. Among factors affecting learning is mentor and mentor-
ship quality. More important than transferring knowledge is to
directly and indirectly educate mentees how to effectively su-
pervise and manage the education phenomenon. These duties
equip mentees with skills to take initiatives in confronting real
life challenges and develop solutions instead of blindly follow-
ing others and staying apathetic. This systematic education
promotes originality, innovation, and creativeness, and dis-
courages transcription (Nikkhah, 2011b). Mentorship patterns
should match optimum learning patterns to prove most produc-
tive. Harmonic learning-mentoring tasks will optimize profess-
sional communication skills (i.e., spoken, written, aural) and
will generate elite speakers, listeners, and writers. These skills
must be acquired thoroughly before any advancement in sci-
ence and technology can make it to people’s lives to improve
life quality. The communication skills are means whereby sci-
ence and technology are created, expanded, disseminated, and
applied. While the interactive sophisticated mutual (mentor-
mentee) mentorship practices replace one-way teaching, the
above skills will develop in a timely manner. Such a communal
learning involves challenging mentorship principles to create
and expand capacities for excellence in communication. As a
result of creating new capacious talents, science education will
continue to glorify in many aspects that will contribute to im-
proving science and life qualities (Nikkhah, 2011c).
Discovering, Valuing, and Expanding Elite
Mentorship Skills
Motivation fuels progress in science and technology. The key
to create and maintain motivation is discovering and valuing
creative insights. Creativeness is a potential to realize and se-
cure. Mentees can be mentored to develop and expand creativ-
ity. Discovering and expanding creative talents is an obligation
for the third millennium’s science servants. The most fruitful
science is the one that discovers and creates talents who can
discover and create higher quality talents. Equipment, devices,
technologies, techniques, and publications are not considered
the foremost science products in the postmodern era. The
postmodern science requires minds and philosophies that will
progressively facilitate generating such science products (Nikkhah,
2011d). The postmodern science education focuses first and
foremost on the cause. The effect will result automatically. The
cause includes elite mentors who advance elite mentorship
skills. The cause includes elite distinguished thinkers who are
prepared to be challenged to generate elite thinkers of the com-
ing generations. Creative motivation facilitates the multi-nature
complex of science education. Mentors should get mentees
involved in education. Mentors must not let mentees to remain
only learners. Science will achieve the highest potentials should
mentees get involved with mentorship duties very early during
the learning process. The postmodern science will not look into
educators as simply knowledge transporters and will not con-
sider learners as followers or knowledge seekers and trancrip-
tors. Teachers and learners are in no ways mobile knowledge
careers. They must synthesize and expand skills to transform
knowledge into insights and educate others such skills
(Nikkhah, 2011a). Knowledge can improve life quality only
when it is transformed into insightful real life strategies
(Nikkhah, 2011b). Therefore, learning is only a trivial part of
the whole mentorship collection whose main component is
creating the capacity to educate others. Learning is not saving
intact information in mind. Learning is a beginning to lead a
mentee to become a mentor. Effective learning can be guaran-
teed only when effective mentorship skills are adequately de-
Teacher Education for Optimum Mentorship
The beginner educators are to be profoundly educated on
moral constituents of the delicate mentorship commitment. It
must be continually emphasized that the most significant entity
of any society is the quality of its educators. Superior education
enables constructing superior social, economic, and cultural
properties. Higher quality education, thus, leads to intellectual
and superior oral and aural communications. These benefits
will ease life affairs and improve life quality and satisfaction.
The effects of such systematic education will be beyond regions
and will involve global science education (Nikkhah, 2011c,
2011d). It is inferred that some of the current global challenges
in sustaining a quality life for the world citizens result from
education deficiencies in certain regions. Thus, an effective
approach for optimizing global life quality is to improve re-
gional science educations in harmonic manners.
Optimizing Mentor-Staff-Mentee Interactions
Three main professional tasks are necessary to optimizing the
academic science education. These include mentors’ advising
programs, mentees’ outspoken expression of challenges to-
wards mentorship, and staff’s management of academic docu-
mentation and paperwork. Globally, the latter does not seem to
receive deserving attention in many instances. Basically, staff
help bridge mentors’ and mentees’ minds. As such, they must
periodically receive systematic education to profoundly appre-
ciate their standing in academia and their critical role in facili-
tating effective science education. The unique role distinguishes
academic official staff from counterparts in non-academic en-
vironments. Optimizing the three-way communication among
mentors, mentees and staff has been a major challenge in aca-
demia. Education for improving communication among the
three groups is a foundation upon which mentees’ future socie-
tal communication skills will be built. Getting through an effec-
tive communication with mentors and staff in academia will
equip mentees with proficient skills to overcome management
challenges in science education in either academia, industry, or
any society they will work in. Another main challenge is to
establish professional communications between mentors and
mentees (Allen et al., 2011). Questions, suggestions, critiques,
and any thought exchange between mentors and mentess are to
be highly persuaded and frequently exercised. In the postmod-
ern systems of science education, mentors welcome mentees’
challenges of mentorship because this will simply grant men-
tees with pathways for gaining mentorship experience and will
enable them to practically appreciate the true art of mentorship
(Nikkhah, 2011b). Silence, one-way teaching, and challenge-
free thought expression are considered toxic to any dynamic
education system and must be discouraged. Realistically, al-
ways expected from mentess is not the optimally professional
communication, which is always expected from mentors. Men-
tors, thus, should acknowledge and grant the opportunity to
mentees to learn from scenarios they face during their learning
experience. The program will not repeat, and thus, should be
maximally utilized to enhance mentorship efficiency for men-
tors, mentees, education systems, founders, governments, and
ultimately people.
Socio-Economic Security of Postmodern Science
Science education is a delicate process that needs to be con-
ducted under mentally focused and socio-economically stable
conditions (Weinberg, 2011). External factors that weaken the
motivation induction process will dramatically reduce outcomes
quality in any education setting. Special economical and social
promotion policies need to be innovated to support, maintain
and enhance mentors’ abilities in inducing motivation in men-
tees towards science and technology. Such policies will str-
engthen mentees’ beliefs in the power of science for trans-
forming human lives. The major part of a promotion policy lies
in its social security. Very often, financial promotions are
highly insufficient in persuading mentors to induce motivation
in mentees for science. Social security is defined as social sig-
nificance. Mentors must feel their character socially significant
before they can be persuaded to make enormous efforts to en-
hance their mentorship skills. Such a social significance ought
to be properly recognized and appreciated by policy-makers
and governors (Nikkhah, 2011e). Such recognitions will make
mentors increasingly appreciative of their outstanding position
in the scientific and economical growth of the world nations.
As a result, mentor will make further efforts to ensure generat-
ing upcoming mentors with capabilities to keep the science ball
Integration of Theoretical and Applied Sciences:
Revisited Policy-Making for Mentees Evaluation
In all science majors, theoretical and applied branches are
highly integrated. Basically, no science major can be solely
theoretical or applied. What makes a given science theoretical
or applied concerns with how, when, where, and within which
education system it is utilized. Also, a science can under no
circumstances be absolutely theoretical or applied. It can rather
be proportionally either one. Unifying theoretical and applied
aspects of science will strengthen the interactions of academia
and industry. The resulting graduates will be better prepared to
work through challenges of the industry. Also, the systematic
integration of theoretical and applied sciences will increase
mentors’ inspiration in supervising the learning process. The
enthusiasm will improve science perception and minimize am-
biguities. In addition, such a mentorship passion will better
mentor-mentee interactions and their task satisfaction. Integrat-
ing a multitude of sciences with theoretical and applied aspects
resemble playing a multitude of music instruments in an or-
chestra. The harmony among the instruments will create states-
of-art that are greatly superior to when each instrument is
played alone. Science would similarly benefit from such an
influential harmony because science is an art and scientists are
artists (Nikkhah, 2011b). Thus, pursuing multi-science perspec-
tives should be encouraged. Brain cells process information
more effectively when an increased enthusiasm results from an
amalgamation of different sciences (Berns & Moore, 2011;
Berns et al., 2011; Nikkhah, 2011c). As a result, global insights
into the ultimate goals of progress in science and technology for
improving human life quality will be optimally developed in
mentees’ minds. Optimal understanding of the global science
philosophy will be a commitment and will mature with men-
tees’ appreciation of such multi-science learning strategies.
Mentee evaluation programs should not be limited to only
written examination of theoretical sciences. This would only
test mentees’ memory and photocopying practices that are not
praiseworthy in the postmodern science education. Memorizing
and delivering the same information given by the teacher is not
an art. Receiving insights from the mentor, contemplating, dis-
cussing, and proposing innovative proposals that lead to new
experiments and discoveries are among the postmodern duties
of mentees. In testing mentees’ challenged learning and ana-
lytical skills for both theoretical and applied aspects, they are
expected to independently direct and conduct experimental or
thought designs. This will prove their capability in contemplat-
ing, tackling, and overcoming real-life problems as applied to
their major. Communication skills will expand and be tested
when mentees conclude the designs with public presentation
and data dissemination in both oral and written. A recent study
suggested that mentees who experience both teaching and re-
search perform superior in designing new experiments com-
pared to those who focus only on research (Feldon et al., 2011).
Thus, what are expected from an upcoming mentor must be
exercised in mentees’ graduate programs. Ultimately, any
postmodern scientist must become proficient in research design,
data collection, analysis, communication, and distribution to be
of utmost benefit to science and society. These are undoubtedly
the most determining duties of a scientific task. Science must
generate producers and not consumers. Such procedures would
ensure generating upcoming insightful mentors instead of lin-
gering students who do not initiate confronting and surmount-
ing life challenges. The most devastating failure of an education
system would be a collection of follower graduates who despite
having high scores in written tests are unable to mentor, design,
direct, conduct, and conclude experiments that aim to advance
science and improve life quality. Demonstrating such skills is
not suddenly expected at the termination of mentees’ studies,
but they are trained to gain those skills throughout their pro-
gram. This preparation will involve proficiencies in definitive-
decision-making, collaborative-working, and independent-men-
toring as graduates start their professional activities. Optimally,
students should thus be provided with opportunities to simulta-
neously act as mentor and mentee to experience and appreciate
their responsibilities. That will help optimize their communica-
tion skills in academia and industry in contributing to generat-
ing distinguished elite mentors.
This perspective article delineated postmodern learning-
mentoring interrelations, discovering and sustaining elite men-
torship capacities, teacher education for optimum mentorship,
and mentor-staff-mentee interactions. The socio-economic se-
curity for science educators, fundamental integration of theo-
retical and applied sciences, and revisited mentee evaluation
programs were described. With most deserving thought, time
and financial investments in the above philosophies, elite-
management projects and elite-manager development will pre-
vail as a creative commitment in academia. These education
philosophies will improve social economics and creative life
quality worldwide.
Nature for its inspiring life expressions deserves the highest
Alberts, B. (2008). Considering science ed u c a t i o n . Science, 319, 1589.
Alberts, B. (2009a). Making a science of education. Science, 323, 15.
Alberts, B. (2009b). Redefining scienc e education. Science, 323 , 437.
Alberts, B. (2009c). Science for science. Science, 324, 13.
Allen, J. P., Pianta, R. C., Gregory, A., Mikami, A. Y., & Lun, J. (2011).
An interaction-based approach to enhancing secondary school in-
struction and student ach i e ve ment. S cie nc e, 333, 1034-1037.
Berns, G. S., & Moore, S. E. (2011). A neural predictor of cultural
popularity. Jo ur n al of Consumer Psychology, in press.
Berns, G. S., Capra, C. M., Moore, S., & Noussair, C. (2010). Neural
mechanisms of the influence of popularity on adolescent ratings of
music. Neuroimage, 49, 2687-2696.
Feldon, D. F., Peugh, J., Timmerman, B. E., Maher , M. A., Hurst, M.,
Strickland, D., Gilmore, G. A. & Stiegelmeyer, C. (2011). Graduate
students’ teaching experiences improve their methodological re-
search sills. Science, 333, 1037-1039. doi:10.1126/science.1204109
Nikkhah, A. (2011a). Structuring science education in the New Millen-
nium: Authorizing a succeeding integrity. Progress in Education,
New York, NY: Nova Publishers Inc.
Nikkhah, A. (2011b). Science education of the new millennium: Men-
torship arts for creative lives. Creative Education, in press.
Nikkhah, A. (2011c). Frontiers in global science designation for quality
lives. Scientific Research and Ass ays, in press.
Nikkhah, A. (2011d). Postmodern science edification philosophy. Open
Journal of Philosophy, in press. doi:10.4236/ojpp.2011.11007
Nikkhah, A. (2011e). Postmodern governments and science education.
Journal of Public Administration and Govern a n c e , 1, 71-74.
Weinberg, S. (2011). Nobelist steven weinberg calls for bigger science,
more taxes. ScienceNOW. URL (last checked 6 June 2011)