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#396326 - 05/23/08 09:24 AM Re: what does master or grand-master mean to you? [Re: Andymcc]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
Well...while I agree that depending on the spirit of the requirements...it certainly sounds that way.

On the other, does it make any sense at all to be a 4/5/6/7th dan and have any title at all with only a handful of students still training directly under one? And those students with few or no students of their own? I was in the weird situation of training once with my teacher, his teacher and his teacher. Five folks total. 'Be nice to the old man..don't break a rib'...7th dan joking with the 10th kyu (me).

I can see the need for a 'standards' and records keeper in large systems, as well as a mechanism for ensuring quality control (as the grandmaster sees it).

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#396327 - 05/23/08 10:29 AM Re: what does master or gand-master mean to you? [Re: Andymcc]
jeff_andle Offline
Member

Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 241
Loc: Falmouth, Maine USA
Quote:

Quote:

Some of the requirements to being allowed to become a Master are

tested for 6th dan.

full time instructor (4th dan requirement) with 200 active students (5th dan requirement) and a higher threshold (500? 6th dan requirement).






This is absolutely rediculous. This implies that being a "master" means how business-savy you are. Being a good enough businessman that you have acquired 200+ students is a requirement for "master"?? If that is the case I would seriously question your organization.
That has nothing at all to do with knowledge and skill of TKD, which is what a master of TKD is.

It would also lead to a fast-food style approach to running a dojang, a McDojang if you will. Recruiting and promoting to do what it takes to keep students happy, so that your numbers build, so you can hit that magic number of 200... so you can (Whooo hoooooo) be called a "master".
Pretty sad IMO. I would seriously question any organization where that is a requirement to be called "master".




No. It means that over the course of time as an instructor that you have trained instructors who in turn have students. This represents a total of all students and students of students and so on.

The pholosophy behind it is that you're knowledge and instruction skills are such that you have an impact on the training of a meaningful number of students.

It's note like you could just get 200 students (day care) and claim mastership.
_________________________
sam dan Songham Taekwondo The learning has just begun...

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#396328 - 05/23/08 10:33 AM Re: what does master or grand-master mean to you? [Re: harlan]
jeff_andle Offline
Member

Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 241
Loc: Falmouth, Maine USA
Quote:

Well...while I agree that depending on the spirit of the requirements...it certainly sounds that way.

On the other, does it make any sense at all to be a 4/5/6/7th dan and have any title at all with only a handful of students still training directly under one? And those students with few or no students of their own? I was in the weird situation of training once with my teacher, his teacher and his teacher. Five folks total. 'Be nice to the old man..don't break a rib'...7th dan joking with the 10th kyu (me).

I can see the need for a 'standards' and records keeper in large systems, as well as a mechanism for ensuring quality control (as the grandmaster sees it).




It is possible to have only ever trained one person through to instructor and qualify under this one (of many) criteria if this student and this student's students and so on total 200 active. You can be appalling at business (my instructor was) but awesome at inspiring others (he was). Its a metric of impact upon others in the art.
_________________________
sam dan Songham Taekwondo The learning has just begun...

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#396329 - 05/23/08 11:58 AM Re: what does master or grand-master mean to you? [Re: harlan]
ITFunity Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/15/06
Posts: 2053
Quote:

There is absolutely no way a PhD=grandmaster. I've known PhD candidates that fast-tracked in basically 6 years. Your average BA used to be 22 years old. Add 6 years to that...28 year old 'grandmaster'?
My college professor used to tell me that getting a BA was like a funnel with the wide part on top, and getting one's MA and PhD was the inverse...study becoming increasingingly narrow and specialized. A grandmaster has breadth, and depth of knowledge, and TIME put in using it. A PhD graduates and with connections get a good job. But even with their degrees...they start at the BOTTOM!





Yes you make good points. However my analogy was not in ages, as in how old someone is, but the time they trained & what the training involves. For instance, elementary education can start at 1st grade to 8th grade, with many even starting much earlier with kindergarden, pre-K nursery etc. What happens in this enviornment is basic education, the alphabet, reading, writing & math.
After those 8-10 years on the basics, one goes to secondary school (High School) with generally 4 more years of general education but at a deeper level.
Of course college offers more basics with the general requirements, the knowledge is deeper & with electives, more specialized. Then in graduate school, a masters concentrates on an area, with a PhD an even more narrow concentration with contribution to the existing body of knowledge.
So add up the years of ed & see how it flows, that was more my point. Your points well taken!

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#396330 - 05/23/08 12:04 PM Re: what does master or gand-master mean to you? [Re: jeff_andle]
ITFunity Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/15/06
Posts: 2053
Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

Some of the requirements to being allowed to become a Master are tested for 6th dan.
full time instructor (4th dan requirement) with 200 active students (5th dan requirement) and a higher threshold (500? 6th dan requirement).



This is absolutely rediculous. This implies that being a "master" means how business-savy you are. Being a good enough businessman that you have acquired 200+ students is a requirement for "master"?? If that is the case I would seriously question your organization.
That has nothing at all to do with knowledge and skill of TKD, which is what a master of TKD is.
It would also lead to a fast-food style approach to running a dojang, a McDojang if you will. Recruiting and promoting to do what it takes to keep students happy, so that your numbers build, so you can hit that magic number of 200... so you can (Whooo hoooooo) be called a "master".
Pretty sad IMO. I would seriously question any organization where that is a requirement to be called "master".



No. It means that over the course of time as an instructor that you have trained instructors who in turn have students. This represents a total of all students and students of students and so on.
The pholosophy behind it is that you're knowledge and instruction skills are such that you have an impact on the training of a meaningful number of students.
It's note like you could just get 200 students (day care) and claim mastership.




Now if I was to see a of having a certain number of students, if would in my mind & eyes, raise a red flag. If upon further review, I also would find that these certain number of students needed to be registered, with the payment of a fee, then more red flags would be raised. However, if that was not the case & no money or fees were tied to it, I can then be more open to see the value of how having a number of students can give further info to see if a person qualifies for that advancement & position. JMHO

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#396331 - 05/23/08 01:12 PM Re: what does master or gand-master mean to you? [Re: ITFunity]
jeff_andle Offline
Member

Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 241
Loc: Falmouth, Maine USA
Quote:


Now if I was to see a of having a certain number of students, if would in my mind & eyes, raise a red flag. If upon further review, I also would find that these certain number of students needed to be registered, with the payment of a fee, then more red flags would be raised. However, if that was not the case & no money or fees were tied to it, I can then be more open to see the value of how having a number of students can give further info to see if a person qualifies for that advancement & position. JMHO




It is a requirement that your teaching have a direct impact on 200 active and testing students. In some way there is at least the record keeping fee to HQ because of that, so somewhere, someone is paying fees in order for person A to become Master A. However Master A might have no active students, might no longer own a club or school and may just have trained 10 people through to instructors that all run 20 person clubs...

Surely there is cash flow to the organization. It's the negative flip side of organizations in general and the necessary cost of objective, central records and ranking. Some will see the cash side only and miss the point. For all that matters, and it does happen, I could run a charitable school for disadvantaged youths, get donors to pay the testing fees to HQ or even get the organization to waive them, and have 1000 non-paying students. The organization loves money but the purpose of the requirement is that to be a Master you must have a current and quantifiable impact on the education and training of a meaningful number of students.


Let's look at the military equivalent. Master is on the order of a general(2 star in our style). If every colonel in the Army shuns you and requests a transfer to a diiferent general, you will not be getting that promotion. Of course in the military, choice of superios officer is not a very common option.
_________________________
sam dan Songham Taekwondo The learning has just begun...

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#396332 - 05/23/08 03:48 PM Re: what does master or gand-master mean to you? [Re: jeff_andle]
TKD_X Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 01/24/08
Posts: 786
Loc: HERE
i would say if you even owned a school and tested for the required dan you should be considered a master. 200 students? that's bologna. if you have 10 dedicated students and you test for the required dan, i'm gonna call you a master.
_________________________
Are you ok!?!? It was an accident! No really! I promise!

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#396333 - 05/23/08 09:31 PM Re: what does master or gand-master mean to you? [Re: TKD_X]
flynch Offline
Member

Registered: 09/04/07
Posts: 265
I think grandmaster is an redundant term.

My instructor is a master because he has mastered the art of Tae Kwon Do. His resume illustrates this and his ability when you meet him confirms this (his 50 years of experience back this up). He has indepth knowledge of the skills and trainning needed to become proficient in the Art of Tae Kwon Do. He has the ability and the skill to pass that knowledge on to his students. He lives by the tenents that so many try to teach, he doesn't need to teach them. He is them. So to me he is a master of the art but is also a master instructor of the art, I do not see the two as the same. He has become a grandmaster because his master died leaving him with a legacy and a responsibility to carry on and teach Tae Kwon Do. He is referred to as a grandmaster of the system of Tae Kwon Do. I call him master because he has mastered the art that I am interested in learning. I do not address him as grandmaster because there was only supposed to be one grandmaster of Tae Kwon Do.

I look at mastery of an Art in a some what western definition. You have to have put in the time and developed the physical skill; sure enough but you also require the maturity and the wisdom only brought on by years of hard work and training to develop the qualities that true students of the Art seek.

It is not like a PhD because the idea of a Phd is to be an expert in an extremely narrow subset of you feild and to contribute original research.

A Grandmaster should have a PhD in sparring, a PhD in patterns, a PhD in history, a PhD in trainning/exercise, a PhD in instrution and coaching, a Phd in motivation and the wisdom to know when to use each.

Just like not everyone has the ability to attain black belt, fewer still will ever be able to truely master the wide range of skills requiredto be considered a Master.

By the way that BA, Master, Phd example above was brilliant.

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#396334 - 05/23/08 10:56 PM Re: what does master or gand-master mean to you? [Re: TKD_X]
jeff_andle Offline
Member

Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 241
Loc: Falmouth, Maine USA
Quote:

i would say if you even owned a school and tested for the required dan you should be considered a master. 200 students? that's bologna. if you have 10 dedicated students and you test for the required dan, i'm gonna call you a master.




... which is why so many people get fed up with the requirements and start their own independent thing -- to avoid an objective requirement. I guess in two years if i pass my 4th dan test I can start getting itchy feet??
_________________________
sam dan Songham Taekwondo The learning has just begun...

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#396335 - 05/24/08 01:47 PM Re: what does master or gand-master mean to you? [Re: jeff_andle]
TKD_X Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 01/24/08
Posts: 786
Loc: HERE
is that an objective requirement? is it really? if you have MASTERed the skills and obtained a certain dan, i will call you a master. what if you live in a less populated city where there is less demand for a tae kwon do school? if there are not 200 people who want to do tae kwon do, it could take you two or more times as long to become a "master" as it takes the guy who was in your class who moved to a big city and got 100 students in the first year and a half. here's an analogy and feel free to contest it: if you go to school to become a paramedic, are they going to tell you that you have to rescue 200 people before you can actually be called a paramedic. you went to school for years and you have the knowledge but you don't get your title until you save 200 people? a master is a master. if a 3rd degree black belt has 200 students and tests for 4th dan does he automatically become a master? if an 8th dan decides he doesn't want 200 students are you going to tell me he is not a master?
_________________________
Are you ok!?!? It was an accident! No really! I promise!

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