Course Title: History of American Higher Education


        Instructor Professor Ed Taylor
       Institution University of Washington
Office Number 206.543-1836
E-mail address edtaylor@u.washington.edu



1. Overview

Institutions have customs, traditions, values, and practices-many of which are from historical trends that affect students, faculty, staff and trustees. Historical analysis helps us to understand the inception and strength of institutional norms, the encounters between actors, and opportunities and constraints encountered by institutions.


2. Aims


3. Weekly procedure

Our course will involve a combination of mini lectures, and seminar-discussion, based largely on the reading that we do in preparation for each week's session. Discussion questions accompany each topic, and we will base each session on them. If you have additional questions to suggest, they will be welcomed.


4. Written assignments

You will be required to write a research based paper that explores some topic relating to the history of higher education. An early draft, showing the introduction, an outline of what will follow, and a bibliography, will be due November 10. The final draft will be due December 15.


5. Evaluation

A superior graduate-level performance will yield a 4.0 grade; a satisfactory performance 2.8.


6. Textbooks

Copies of The History of Higher Education ASHE Reader Series will be available at the University of Washington Bookstore, everyone should obtain a copy of this book.

I also recommend the following three books on the general history of American higher education:


SEMINAR SCHEDULE

Monday, September 29. . . . . . . . . .Introduction of the seminar Pre-medieval higher education

Seminar activity

We will spend the early part of this first session becoming acquainted with each other and with the course agenda. With the time remaining we will note briefly some of the early history of higher education before the Middle Ages. A seminar such as ours could well begin with the Middle ages or even with the founding of Harvard in 1636, but to do so would be to ignore centuries of development from which American higher education has today emerged.

Monday, October 6. . . . . . . . . .Medieval and Reformation higher education

Reading assignment

Supplementary readings


Seminar activity

I am going to ask that you gather material on the Middle Ages and on the Reformation. Let us propose that one-third of the group concentrate on the universities of southern Europe (primarily Bologna), one-third on northern Europe (primarily Paris), and one-third on Oxford and Cambridge. In our reading let's try to find answers to the following questions:

What were the origins of the universities in Bologna, Paris, Oxford, and Cambridge? How did these origins differ? In what ways are they similar? What was taught in these institutions? Who did the teaching? What characterized the students? How did Bologna, Paris, and Oxbridge differ in regard to these questions? How were the universities in Bologna, Paris, and Oxbridge run? What role did "administrators" play? The faculty? Students? Nations? The Church? Civil government? How did Bologna, Paris, and Oxbridge differ in regard to governance? What traditions have been sustained and how do they influence higher education in America today?


Monday, October 13. . . . . . . . . .Colonial higher education

Reading assignment

Supplementary readings

Seminar activity

We will spend the early part of the period putting the nine colonial colleges into historical context. With the time remaining we will do some role-playing. I will take the role of the father of three college-bound children: a son (Jacob)m a daughter (Mary), and an adopted American Indian son (Joseph). Each of you will take the role of an "admissions officer" who is recruiting students for one of the colonial colleges. The year will be 1770. We will want to know what requirements the children will face in gaining admission to your college, the curriculum that you offer, and the nature of campus life, especially those characteristics that set your college apart from the others.

Monday, October 20. . . . . . . . . .A Period of Exploration, 1776-1862

Reading assignment

Supplementary reading

Seminar activity:

In addition to the beginnings of higher education for African Americans and women (which we will discuss next week) this next period (1776-1862) marks a number of efforts to produce change in American higher education. We will want to pay attention to certain of these efforts as illustrated in Jefferson's plans for education in Virginia and those of Eliphalet Nott at Union College, the Dartmouth College Case, the Yale Report of 1828, Ticknor's ill-fated reforms at Harvard, Wayland's at Brown, and Tappan's at Michigan. As you read about these efforts, ask the following questions:

What motivated those who promoted these changes? Who led the efforts to produce the changes and who fought them? How do you account for the opposition? To what extent did the efforts succeed or fail? What was their impact? To what do you attribute this success or failure?

Monday, October 27. . . . . . . . . .Higher education for African Americans and for women in the 19th and 20th century.

Reading assignment

Supplementary readings


Seminar activity

Let us suggest that we divide into two groups today, one that will concentrate on African American higher education during the 19th century, the other on women's higher education during that same period. African Americans and women gained access fo higher education during the 19th century but in so doing encountered resistance. We shall build our seminar around questions dealing with the controversy, including the following:

What barriers stood between African Americans, women, and higher education? Why did these barriers exist? Why did these barriers decline in the 19th century? Who led the opening of higher education to African Americans and to women? Which institutions led the way? What was the nature of the curriculum offered to the African americans and to the women during the 19th century? What was the status of higher education for African Americans and the women at the start of the 20th century?

Monday, November 3. . . . . . . . . .Rise of the universities after 1862

Reading assignment

Supplementary readings

Seminar activity

The American university blossomed during the period after the Civil War. In so doing it followed several strands. Under the impetus of the Land Grant College Act of 1862, for instance, land grant colleges began to reach out to farmers, engineers, and other members of the so-called industrial classes. Cornell and Wisconsin were the bellweather institutions in the movement. Another group of state universities did not benefit directly from the Act, but they grew nevertheless under the impetus of increased funding from state governments. Michigan and Washington are examples of this movement. Still another group of universities emerged from the old American literary colleges, where graduate education and research were wedded to the undergraduate and professional school programs already underway. Harvard and Columbia are the primary examples in this group. Finally, a new strand of private research universities began to emerge, representing an American adaptation of the German research university. Here the best examples are Chicago, Johns Hopkins, and Stanford.

I'd like each of you to assume the role of one of the presidents of this era, such as the following:

I will plan to interview you, building the interviews around the following qustions:

What can you tell us about your life, especially as it led to the presidency you now occupy? What contributions do ou believe your institution made to the rise of universities after 1862? Of what are you most proud? Why do you suppose you were able to accomplish what you did when you did it? What obstacles did you encounter along the way?


Monday, November 10. . . . . . . . . .The rise of the American junior/community college

Reading assignment

Supplementary readings

Seminar activity

Today's community colleges grew from several sources. Those sources include (1) private colleges or academies which either never did develop their third and fourth-year collegiate level courses, or, having developed them, later dropped them; (2) normal schools which broadened their mission at the 13th and 14th grades; (3) public secondary schools which produced "post graduate" courses beyond the 12th grade; and (4) public colleges conceived from the beginning as two-year institutions. During much of their history they have been known as "junior colleges," but following World War II their leaders came increasingly to promote their potential to serve a whole host of educational needs in their community. Hence the new title, "the community college."

During the early part of the afternoon I shall try to show the general history of the junior/community college. With this background I shall delve into the documents that you have collected on given periods in that history.

At the close of today's session I Will collect at that time the early drafts of term papers.


Monday, November 17. . . . . . . . . .The 20th Century to 1929

Reading assignment

Supplementary readings:

Seminar activity

Much happened during the first three decades of the twentieth century that contributed to the maturation of American higher education. The general form of the undergraduate curriculum as we know it today came into place. Faculty members, meanwhile, assumed a more professional role. New institutions appeared where research played an important role, but in other instances the new institutions gave priority to undergraduate education. Meanwhile a war occurred that produced some strong responses from academe. We shall build or session today around the following questions:

What changes occurred in the undergraduate curriculum and student life during this period? What were Veblen's concerns during this period? In what ways did the American professoriate change during this period? In what ways did the American Association of University Professors contribute to that change? Which were the prominent new institutions of this period and what did they contribute? How did American higher education respond to World War I?


Monday, November 24. . . . . . . . . .The Great Depression and World War II

Reading assignment

Supplementary readings

Seminar activity

The period between 1929 and 1945 includes a number of activities we shall want to explore. Higher education - its institutions, its students, and its faculty -felt the impact of the great depression and responded in different ways. Inevitably, criticisms arose. Despite the problems, AAUP succeeded during this period in gaining approval among national trustee and administrator groups of its statement on academic freedom and tenure. And when war returned, students and faculty did their part in its eventual successful resolution. Let us try to answer the following questions:

How did American higher education respond to the Great Depression? Among its institutions? Among its students? Among its faculty? What were the criticisms of Flexner and Hutchins? How open were American colleges and universities of this period to ethnic differences? What was the 1940 AAUP Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom & Tenure, and what was its significance? What was the campus response to World War II?


Monday, December 1. . . . . . . . . .The Rise to International Prominence, 1945-present

Reading assignment

Supplementary readings

Seminar activity

American higher education, especially at the graduate level, assumed during today's period a stature unmatched anywhere else in the world. This is also a period when American higher education, influenced by the 1944 GI bill and the rise of community colleges, reached a much wider spectrum of society than any nation had ever achieved. In the midst of these accomplishments, colleges and universities worldwide underwent a period of serious student unrest. This activity had its impact on the perception Americans had of their higher institutions and on the perception the institutions had of themselves. We shall explore the following qustions:

What role did the federal government play in the changing character of American higher education during this period? Why did these changes occur? What roles did the multiversity, the comprehensive university, and the community college play in these changes? How do we account for the years of student unrest? What were the major events and issues connected with that movement? What impact did it have? What is the status of American undergraduate education today? What changes should occur? Why?


Monday, December 8. . . . . . . . . .Synthesis

Seminar activity

In this concluding session we will review the material we have covered this quarter, building my synthesis around several key questions:

In what ways have the goals of higher education changed or remained the same since Greek times? What were the major institutions of higher education associated with each period? What relative importance went to teaching, research, or service during each period? In what ways did governance change? What were the major higher education outcomes of each period? What issues confront American higher education today? Does the history we have studied this quarter help us to understand those issues better? Given the history we have studied this term, what directions would we expect American higher education to take in the future?

Please note-final papers are due December 15




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