Course Title: History of Higher Education

        Instructor Professor J. Douglas Toma
       Institution University of Missouri-Kansas City
Office Number 816.235.2451
E-mail address


The study of higher education demands historical context. Our main task this semester is to focus upon the evolution of the key constituencies within different types of American higher education institutions. We will proceed both chronologically and topically in exploring the historical bases of our colleges and universities.

We will begin with the historiography of our topic. After reviewing the ancient and medieval foundations of the colleges founded in colonial America, we will explore the emergence of denominational colleges and the classical curriculum, tracing the independent sector of higher education to the present. We will examine the development of professional, practical, and graduation education beginning in the late 19th century and the emergence and evolution of modern, corporate-style administration that followed shortly thereafter at the beginning of the twentieth century. We will look at several 20th century alternatives to the liberal arts college and research university model: urban and metropolitan universities, community colleges, historically black colleges and universities, and womens colleges (the latter two having 19th century roots). Finally, we will address the gradual diversification of student bodies and faculties, beginning in the late 19th century and continuing to our day, and what Thelin has termed the “peculiar institution” of intercollegiate athletics.

My intention in assigning a research paper that you will present to the class at the end of the semester is to not only introduce you to the techniques of historical research but to cause you to further develop your ability to analyze issues and problems that arise in higher education using a variety of intellectual tools.


A. Day, Time, and Place

The course is scheduled to meet each Thursday from 4:30 p.m. to 7:05 p.m. in room 336 School of Education. We will take a short break each week at sometime around 6:00 p.m.

B. Addresses and Telephone Numbers

You may reach me outside of class by visiting my office, via telephone, or through electronic mail. My preference is that you contact me by e-mail whenever possible. I will check for both voice and e-mail messages at least daily. My office is located on the third floor of the School of Education in Suite 328 (Urban Leadership and Policy Studies).

My address is:

School of Education University of Missouri-Kansas City 5100 Rockhill Road Kansas City, Missouri 64110

My telephone numbers are:

My electronic mail address is:

C. Secretary

The is currently not a secretary assigned to my office suite. Please contact me directly.

D. Office Hours

I will hold office hours by appointment.


A. Texts

We will use three texts in the course:

B. Coursepack

There will also be a coursepack for the course available on reserve at the IMC, which is located on the first floor of the School of Education Building. A coursepact of optional materials will also be available.


A. Research Paper and Presentation

You will be responsible for producing a research paper of 20-25 pages in length based principally upon either original documents or secondary sources. You may choose your research topic; it must only be related to the history of higher education. The paper will be due on either December 1 or December 4, approximately one week before the day you present your findings to the class. In order to better focus your research, we will follow this process:

Although I recognize that several of you are working full-time outside of the classroom and have several demands upon your time, I will allow extensions on these deadlines only in the case of extreme hardship.

B. Discussion Questions

Before each meeting, you will draft five discussion questions addressing the assigned readings. Good questions often challenge certain of the assumptions, arguments, conclusions, etc. in the readings and are commonly of the how or what variety as opposed to ones beginning with who, what, when, or where. The questions will be due to me, via electronic mail, at by 1 p.m on the day on which they are assigned.

C. Research Paper Response

You will critique the research paper of one of your colleagues in a 5-10 minute presentation. In your comments, focus upon outlining any strengths and weaknesses in the paper. In addition, you should suggest possible avenues for related research and relate the paper to the material that we addressed in the course. Please prepare a one-page summary of your comments to share with me and the colleague that you critique.

D. Electronic Mail

Sometime before the third class meeting on September 11, everyone must obtain an electronic mail account from the University and send me a message at the address listed above. You can reach UMKC Computing Services at 816-235-1480 for information on establishing an e-mail account. I will occasionally post messages about changes in class meetings, assignments, etc. to your address so it is essential that you not only get on e-mail but check it at least weekly. (I will not post any message having to do with a Thursday class meeting or assignment after 5 p.m. on the preceding Tuesday.)

E. Attendance and Behavior

I expect that you will contact me, preferably by electronic mail before 1 p.m. on the day our class meets, if you will not be able to attend any class meeting. I also expect your adherence to UM System and UMKC policies on plagiarism and student academic conduct.


I will use two principal criteria in determining your course grade. The first is the quality of your contributions in class and your regular class attendance. The second is level of sophistication that you display in your written work, discussion questions, and class presentations. Both are a product of your attention to the assigned readings. I encourage you to read carefully and bring any questions that you might have to the attention of the class.


A. Course Introduction and Overview, August 28

B. Historiography and Method, September 4

Goodchild and Wechsler:

Preface and Introduction, xix-xxxiii.


Thelin, J. (1990), Rudolph rediscovered:  An introductory essay, ix-xxiv.

Bibliography and Supplemental Bibliography, 497-526

Brubacher and Rudy:

Preface to the Transaction Edition, ix

Preface, xi

Part 5, In perspective, 399-442.


Geiger, R. (1992), The historical matrix of American higher education, History of Higher Education Annual, 12, 7-28.

Duryea, E., Herbst, J., and Leslie, B. (1992), Responses: The historical matrix of

American higher education,History of Higher Education Annual, 12, 29-34.

Thelin, J. (1982), Higher education and its useful past, Chapter 1, 5-23.

Burstyn, J. (1987), History as image:  Changing the lens, History of Education Quarterly,

27(2), 167-80.

Kaestle, C. (1992), Standards of evidence in historical research:  How do we know when we

know? History of Education Quarterly, 32(3), 361-66.


Blackburn, R. and Conrad, C., The new revisionists and the history of U.S. higher

education (Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition, 160-70).

C.	Ancient and Medieval Foundations; D.	The Colonial Colleges, September 11

Goodchild and Wechsler:

Perkin, History of universities, 3-34.

Cremin, L., College, 35-52.

Herbst, J., From religion to politics, 53-71.

Sloan, D., The Scottish enlightenment and the American college ideal, 94-107.

Vine, P., The social function of eighteenth century higher education, 115-25.


Chapter 1, The colonial college, 3-22.

Brubacher and Rudy:

Part 1, The Colonial College, 3-58.


Benjamin, H., History and objectives (Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition, 25-27).

Domonkos, L., History of higher education (Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition, 3-24).

Lucas (1994),American Higher Education, Chapter 2, From cathedral church schools to

universities, 35-70 (Optional Coursepack).

Lucas (1994),American Higher Education, Chapter 3, Post-medieval academe:  Evolution to

estrangement, 71-99 (Optional Coursepack).

Kimball, B. (1988), The education of those who are free, History of Education Quarterly,

28(2), 243-56 (Optional Coursepack).

Herbst, J. (1992), Translatio studii:  The transfer of learning from the old world to the

new, History of Higher Education Annual, 12, 85-100 (Optional Coursepack).

Statutes of Harvard and Harvard Charter (Goodchild and Weschler, 125-30).

E.	Religion in Higher Education; F.	The Classical Curriculum and the Liberal Arts

College, September 18

Goodchild and Wechsler:

Vine, P., The social function of eighteenth century higher education, 115-24.

Potts, D., “College enthusiasm!” as public response, 149-61.

Church, R. and Smith, M., The antebellum college and academy, 131-49.

Stetar, J., In search of a direction:  Southern higher education after the Civil War,


Goodchild, L., The turning point in American Jesuit higher education:  The standardization

controversy between the Jesuits and the North Central Association, 528-50.


Chapter 3, The college movement, 44-67.

Chapter 4, The religious life, 68-85

Chapter 8, Academic balance of power, 156-76

Chapter 9, Financing the colleges, 177-220.

Chapter 10, Jacksonian democracy and the colleges, 201-20.

Brubacher and Rudy:

Part 2, Nineteenth-Century Innovations in the Colonial College, 59-142.


Kimball, B., The historical and cultural dimensions of the recent reports on undergraduate

education (Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition, 243-56).

Yale Report of 1828 (Goodchild and Weschler, 191-200).

NO CLASS, September 25 and October 2

RESEARCH PAPER PROPOSAL DUE, Monday, September 29 at 1 p.m.


(Note the heavy reading assignment for October 9; plan ahead)

G.	The Sciences and Professional Education; H.	Land Grant Colleges and Normal Schools,

October 9

Goodchild and Wechsler:

Johnson, E., Misconceptions about the early land-grant colleges, 222-33.

Hoeveler, D., The university and the social gospel:  The intellectual origins of the

“Wisconsin Idea,” 234-46.

Hawkins, H.  Toward System, 315-32.

Leslie, W.  The Age of the College, 333-46

Lagemann, E.  Surveying the professions, 394-402

Cremin, L., The education of the educating professions, 403-15.


Chapter 2, Legacy of the revolution, 23-43

Chapter 6, Reform and reaction, 110-35

Chapter 12, Dawning of a new era, 241-63.

Chapter 14, The elective principle, 287-306

Chapter 17, Progressivism and the universities, 355-72.

Brubacher and Rudy:

Chapter 8, The American State University, 143-73.

Chapter 10, Professional Education, 198-218.

Chapter 13, Innovation in Curriculum and Methods, 264-87.

Chapter 14, The Philosophy of Higher Education, 287-307.


Campbell, J. (1994), Reclaiming a Lost Heritage, Chapter 1, A historical perspective of

the land-grant university system, 3-27.

Hawkins, H. (1993), American universities and the inclusion of professional schools,

History of Higher Education Annual, 13, 53-68


Lang, D., The people’s college, the mechanics of mutual protection, and the agricultural

college act (Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition, 197-210).

Johnson, E. (1987), The “other Jeffersons” and the state university idea, Journal of

Higher Education, 58(2), 127-50 (Optional Coursepack).

Waterous, F. (1989), From Salomon’s house to the land-grant college:  Practical arts

education and the utopian vision of progress, Educational Theory, 39(4), 359-72 (Optional


Wheatley, S. (1988), Abraham Flexner and the politics of education reform, History of

Higher Education Annual, 8, 45-58 (Optional Coursepack).

The Morrill Act, 1962 and List of Land Grant Institutions (Goodchild and Weschler,


I.	Graduate Education and the Research University, October 16

Goodchild and Wechsler:

Gruber, C., Backdrop, 203-221.

Williams, R.  The origins of federal support for higher education, 267-72.

Geiger, R.  Research, graduate education, and the ecology . . ., 273-289.

Ross, D.  The development of the social sciences, 290-214

Axtell, J., The death of the liberal arts college, 109-15.

Freeland, R., The world transformed:  A golden age for American universities, 587-609.


Chapter 11, Crisis of the 1850s, 221-40

Chapter 13, The emerging university, 264-286

Chapter 16, Flowering of the university movement, 329-55.

Brubacher and Rudy:

Chapter 9, The Development of the Graduate School, 174-97.

Chapter 11, The Federal Government and Higher Education, 219-40.

Chapoter 15, Academic Freedom, 308-29.


Turner, J. and Bernard, P. (1993), The “German model” and the graduate school:  The

University of Michigan and the origin myth of the American university, History of Higher

Education Annual, 13, 69-98.


Hawkins, H., University identity:  The teaching and research functions (Goodchild and

Weschler, 1st Edition, 265-79.

Geiger, R., The conditions of university research (Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition,


Curti, M., The setting and the problems (Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition, 294-308).

Geiger, R. (1990), Organized research units:  Their role in the development of university

research, Journal of Higher Education, 61(1), 1-19 (Optional Coursepack).

Geiger, R. (1985), After the emergence:  Voluntary support and the building of American

research universities, History of Education Quarterly, 25(3), 369-81 (Optional


Eliot, C., Liberty in education (Goodchild and Weschler, 365-72).

Gilman, D.  The nature and function of the university (Goodchild and Weschler, 373-78.)

J.	The Diversification of the Faculty and Student Body, October 23


Goodchild and Wechsler:

Finkelstein, M.,  From tutor or specialized scholar:  Academic professionalization in

eighteenth and nineteenth century America, 80-93.

Wechsler, H., An academic Gresham’s law:  Group repulsion as a theme in American higher

education, 416-31.

Levine, D., Discrimination in college admissions, 510-27.

Henderson, P.  McCarthyism and the professorate:  A historiographic nightmare, 610-27.

Astin, A., et. al.  Overview of the unrest era, 724-38

Altbach, P., American student politics:  Activism in the midst of apathy, 739-54.

Metzger, W., A spectre is haunting American


Chapter 5, The collegiate way, 86-109

Chapter 7, The extracurriculum, 136-55

Chapter 19, Academic man, 394-16.

Brubacher and Rudy:

Chapter 16, Reintegration of Curriculum and Extracurriculum, 330-53.


Wagoner, J., Honor and dishonor at Mr. Jefferson’s university:  The antebellum years

(Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition, 136-45).

Schlegal, J. (1985).  Between the Harvard founders and the American legal realists:  The

professionalization of the American law professor, Journal of Legal Education, 35(3),

311-25 (Optional Coursepack).

Horowitz, H. (1989).  The changing student culture:  A retrospective, Educational Record,

70(3-4), 24-29 (Optional Coursepack).

Smith, D. (1994).  Student discipline in American colleges and universities:  A historical

overview, Educational Horizons, 72(2), 78-85 (Optional Coursepack).

1940 AAUP Statement of Principles (Goodchild and Weschler, 562-71).

G.I. Bill of Rights (Goodchild and Weschler, 755-57).

Report of the President’s Commission on Higher Education, 1947 and the Higher Education

Act of 1965 (Goodchild and Weschler, 748-80).

K.	The Rise of the Administration, October 30

Goodchild and Wechsler:

Herbst, J., From religion to politics:  Debates and confrontations over American college

governance in mid-eighteenth century America, 42-52.

Moore, K., Freedom and constraint in eighteenth century Harvard, 108-114.

Whitehead, J. and Herbst, J., How to think about the Dartmouth College case, 162-72.

Kerr, J., From Truman to Johnson:  Ad hoc policy formulation in higher education, 628-52

Trow, M.  American higher education:  Past, present, and future, 571-86.


Chapter 20, The organized institution, 417-39.

Chapter 21, Counterrevolution, 417-39.

Chapter 22, An American Consensus, 462-82

Epilogue, 483-96.

Brubacher and Rudy:

Chapter 17, The Enlarging Scope of the Administration, 354-98.


Bowles, F. and Decosta, F., 1954 to the present (Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition,


Veysey, L., The gulf between students and faculty:  The rise of administration (Goodchild

and Weschler, 1st Edition, 338-48).

Best, J., The revolution in markets and management:  Toward a history of American higher

education since 1945 (Goodchild and Weschler, 1st Edition, 491-97).

NO CLASS, November 6, ASHE Annual Meeting


(Note the heavy reading assignment for November 13; plan ahead)

L.	Urban Higher Education and the Community College M.	Historically Black and Native

American Colleges, November 13


Goodchild and Wechsler:

Pedersen, R., Value conflict on the community college campus:  An examination of its

historical origins, 499-509.

Wright, B., “For the children of the infidels?:”  American indian education in the

colonial colleges, 72-79.

Anderson, J., Training the apostles of liberal culture:  Black higher education,

1900-1935, 432-58..

Wagoner, J., The American compromise:  Charles W. Eliot, black education, and the new

South, 459-72.

DuBois, W., The talented tenth, 551-61.

Roebuck, J. and Murty, K., Historically black colleges and universities:  Their place in

American higher education, 667-76.

Olivas, M., Indian, Chicano, and Puerto Rican colleges:  Status and issues, 677-98.

Brubacher and Rudy:

Chapter 12, Articulation of Secondary and High School, 241-63.


Berube, M. (1978), The Urban University in America, Chapter 1, The rise of the urban

university, 1-17.

Berube, M. (1978), The Urban University in America, Chapter 2, The search for equality,


Brownwell, B. (1994), Metropolitan universities:  Past, present, and future, 17-26.

Cohen, A. and Brewer, F. (1996), The American Community College, Chapter 1, Background: 

Evolving priorities and expectations of community colleges, 1-35.

Griffith, M. and Connor, A. (1994), Democracy’s Open Door, Chapter 9, Keeping the door

open:  History and change, 106-16.


Levine, D., Junior colleges and the differentiation of the public sector (Goodchild and

Weschler, 1st Edition, 401-12).

Gordon, L. (1989), Race class and the bonds of womenhood at Spelman Seminary, 1881-1923,

History of Higher Education Annual, 9, 7-32.

Strum, H. (1984), Discrimination at Syracuse University, 1916-1952, History of Higher

Education Annual, 4, 101-22.

N.	The Education of Women, November 20

Goodchild and Wechsler:

Palmieri, P., From republican motherhood to race suicide:  Arguments on the higher

education of women in the United States, 1820-1920, 173-82.

Perkins, L., The impact of the “cult of true womenhood” on the education of black women,


Ogren, C.  Where coeds were coeducated:  Normal schools in Wisconsin, 1970-1920, 347-61.

Gordon, L., From seminary to univerity:  An overview of women’s higher education,

1870-1920, 473-498.

Fass, P., The female paradox:  Higher education for women, 1945-1963, 699-723.


Chapter 15, The education of women, 307-28


Gordon, L. (1987), The Gibson girl goes to college:  Popular culture and women’s higher

education in the progressive era, 1890-1920, American Quarterly, 39, 211-30.


Hague, A. (1984), “What if the power does lie within me?”  Women students at the

University of Wisconsin, 1875-1900, History of Higher Education Annual, 4, 78-100

(Optional Coursepack).

Palmieri, P. (1983), Incipit vita nuova:  Founding ideals of the Wellesley College

community, History of Higher Education Annual, 3, 59-78 (Optional Coursepack).

Seller, M. (1989), A history of “Women’s Education in the United States:”  Thomas Woody’s

classic -- 60 years later, History of Education Quarterly, 29(1), 95-107 (Optional


Townsend, L. (1990), The gender effect:  The early curriculum of Beloit College and

Rockford Female Seminary, History of Higher Education Annual, 10, 69-90 (Optional


Youn, T. and Loscocco, K. (1991), Institutional history and ideology:  The evolution of

two women’s colleges, History of Higher Education Annual, 11, 21-44 (Optional Coursepack).

Gordon, L., Co-education on two campuses:  Berkeley and Chicago, 1890-1912 (Goodchild and

Weschler, 349-65).

Graham, P., Expansion and exclusion:  A history of women in American higher education

(Goodchild and Weschler, 413-24).

NO CLASS, November 27, Thanksgiving

P.	Intercollegiate Athletics, December 4


Chapter 18, The rise of football, p. 373-93


Thelin, J. (1982).  The sporting life:  Higher education and athletics.  Higher Education

and Its Useful Past.

Chu, D. (1985), The American conception of higher education and the formal incorporation

of intercollegiate sport, In D. Chu, et. al. (Eds.), Sport and Higher Education, Chapter

3, 36-56.

Stern, R. (1979), The development of an interorganizational control network:  The case of

intercollegiate athletics, In D. Chu, et. al (Eds.), Sport and Higher Education, Chapter

11, 159-78.

Smith, R. (1983), Preludes to the NCAA:  Early failures of faculty intercollegiate

athletic control, Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 54(4), 372-82.

Smith, R. (1993), History of amaterurism in men’s intercollegiate athletics:  The

continuance of a 19th century anachronism in America, Quest, 45, 430-45.

Owens, L. (1985), Pure and sound government:  laboratories, playing fields, and gynasia in

the nineteenth-century search for order, Isis, 76, 182-94.

Hult, J. (1994), The philosophical conflicts in men’s and women’s collegiate athletics, In

D. Wiggins (Ed.), Sport in America:  From Wicked Amusement to National Obsession, Chapter

18, 301-18.

December 1 (Monday)


Student Presentations, Monday, December 8


Research papers distributed on December 1.


Student Presentations, December 11


Research papers distributed on December 8.


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