The Timbuktu Academy, Department of Physics, Southern University

and A&M College, Baton Rouge, Louisiana


Diola Bagayoko, Ph.D.

Director, The Timbuktu Academy

Southern University and A&M College

Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70813

Telephone: (504) 771-2730

Reference one below explains, using the power law of human performance, that anyone can be made an intellectual giant (a genius)! The power law of performance also known as the power law of practice, simply says that "effort and practice partly beget and certainly enhance athletic, artistic, and intellectual abilities and related achievements (REFS. 1-2). The authors also discussed the details of "how to make an intellectual genius" or a well educated and productive citizen out of any individual. Key points include the following.

Spend adequate time on learning tasks (studying, and doing assignments) during the academic year and the Summer! The secret here is that difficulties one may think exist in a science, engineering, and mathematics discipline are replaced by simple challenges as one learns and practices.

I may watch some educational and other programs on TV or other media, from time to time, but I shall not reduce my existence to that of "watching" or "listening to" others do their jobs! I shall study and prepare my future, irrespective of how enticing the shows may be. These shows will not invent new medicines, pay my bills, etc. now or in the distant future.

The sequential rigidity of mathematics and science disciplines dictates the proper exposure (scope and depth) to the proper courses in the proper order. Algebra and English are needed in the middle school for Advanced Placement mathematics, English, and science in high school. These latter courses, in turn, maximize science, engineering, and mathematics options in college.

Judgement is the ability to distinguish right from wrong and to set priorities. Character is the ability to do what has to be done (studying) even if it may seem that one does not like it. Intellect is developed through learning, so says the power law of performance. A big secret not known to many is that a GPA reflects not only the studying done but also judgement and character (two things of great importance to any employer). Employers see a good transcript as a measure of a student's priorities, focus, determination, and self-discipline. (At some stage, all learning is individual.)

Ladies and gentlemen, it is believed that about half of the actual learning, over the school years, happens outside the classroom! What happens in the classroom is very important but it is not sufficient.

Please also remember that the above regular studying, reading, and exercising have a profound impact that is sometimes not understood: they form the character of the learner! They help define his/her priorities, help focus him/her, and help develop self-discipline. Not, only do these character traits help the learners the rest of their lives but they also help keep them out of some other things too numerous to list here.

1. The Dynamics of Studeint Retention, D. Bagayoko and Ella L. Kelly, Education , Summer 1994.

2. A Paradigm for SEM Undergraduate Education, Bagayoko & Kelly, Proceedings, NACME's 19993 FORUM. Please call the above number for full copies of these noted publications.

We acknowledge the funding of the Timbuktu Academy by NSF, LaSER, and the Department of the Navy, Office of Naval Research (ONR).

MAKING A GENIUS OUT OF ONESELF.html  Copy of document provided to me by wilison doucet of  Baton Rouge LA