I recently hijacked this thread at The Valve. Someone had asked for suggestions for reading lists on what high school students ought to read before entering university. Almost certainly they were intending were intending what literature and literary-criticism scholars would consider adequate preparation for their students. Just on a whim, I sort of hijacked the thread for a random series of rambles on what I'd want high school students to read/do before entering computer science or linguistics programmes in university.
The response was interesting. One or two of them already had some technical education and struck up a conversation. Eventually, however, the discussion was brought back on track to what they would probably have considered more "on topic" book suggestions.
One fairly interesting set of responses comes from a Tony Christini. Not responses to me, but perhaps responses to the fact that there wasn't that much response on the thread by literary-critic types:
What I am surprised at is that at a prompt for important basic college level reading material at a scholarly literary website, there have been virtually no suggestions of basic critical and/or theoretical books that might represent, indicate, or introduce the professional field(s). Is the field that dead to everyone at a basic level? Or is everyone that dead to introducing students and/or lay readers to the field?
I leave it as an exercise for the reader to determine why I might consider this interesting.