I have two questions about fairness and value in relation to achievement.
Suppose student A works very hard for his exam results and gets the grades he wanted. Suppose also that student B is much lazier, putting in significantly less effort, but achieves the same results due to their greater "natural" ability.
Firstly, which student's achievement, if any, is of greater significance or greater value?
Secondly, is it fair that student B achieves the same results as student A without putting in the same level of effort (albeit the same level of effort was not required from student B due to his greater "natural" ability)?
Although the question is framed in terms of justice, fairness, and value, I would like to consider it in terms of attitudes towards knowledge and learning. According to the psychologist William Perry's "Scheme of Intellectual and Ethical Development" , students who have what he called an "early multiplistic" attitude towards knowledge believe that all questions have answers and that all problems have solutions, but that there are two kinds of questions or problems: those whose answers or solutions we know , and those whose answers or solutions we don't know yet . Such students see their task as learning how to find the "correct" solutions. And students who have what Perry called a "late multiplistic" attitude believe either that most problems are of the second kind (hence, everyone has a right to their own opinion) or that some problems are unsolvable (hence, it doesn't matter which--if any--solution you choose). (What I've summarized here is a vast oversimplification for present...