Weekly Liberal Education News Watch
Week of November 7-11, 2016

See these important recent articles of interest to AAC&U members—and all those who care about liberal education and inclusive excellence. 

MinnPost
Across the country, people are asking where we go from here and how we can move beyond deadlock and discord. Liberal arts education, one of our great national resources, is essential on our path forward. The manner in which a society is educated will determine its ability to sustain a social contract, resolve conflict, and participate in its own governance. Read more >>
Daily Herald (Chicago, IL)
Many of us have a bias about general education. We naturally think that if it is "general" and not specialized or specific, general education is somehow "less." Read more >>
Business Insider India
Starbucks’ Howard Schultz has a communications degree, Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield majored in philosophy, and YouTube’s Susan Wojcicki studied history and literature. But how did those liberal arts lessons and skills transfer to the business world? Read more >>
Inside Higher Ed
It’s no surprise that our majors are often pressured to explain what they will do with their degrees or how they will lead to a particular job. Those of us who benefit from the privilege of teaching and advanced study in these areas also sometimes fail to provide a clear and coherent argument for the value of this study and its application in students’ lives and their future livelihood. Read more >>
Epoch Times
Polling consistently shows that millennials (ages 18–35 years old today) are more willing than any other generation to support changes in lifestyle, politics, and business that contribute to a more sustainable world. This is to be expected since they are the first cohort to grow up feeling threatened by climate change. What is lesser known, though, is how they are products of a carefully constructed paradigm shift within higher education that aims to transform what, and how, students learn. Read more >>

Weekly Liberal Education News Watch
Week of December 5-9, 2016

See these important recent articles of interest to AAC&U members—and all those who care about liberal education and inclusive excellence. AAC&U archives other liberal education news stories online at www.aacu.org/liberal-education-news-watch and stories on issues of equity and inclusive excellence at www.aacu.org/press/news-watch/inclusive-excellence.

The Biggest Threat on Campus

Bloomberg View

Robert P. George and Cornel West, both professors at Princeton, are a political odd couple. George is outspokenly conservative while West has been co-chair of the Democratic Socialists of America. . . . A few days ago, I moderated a conversation between them at the American Enterprise Institute, where I am a fellow, on the purpose of the liberal arts. Read more >>

 

In Tumultuous Times, Colleges Can Do What They Do Best

Chronicle of Higher Education

Student unrest, as evidenced by campus boycotts and protests over the past academic year, presents a prime opportunity for campus leaders, alumni, students themselves, parents, faculty and staff members, and the broader community to learn and better prepare themselves to live in a deliberative democracy. Read more >>

 

Without Liberal Arts and Sciences, America's Foundation Crumbles

The Hill

Two hundred and forty years ago this Monday, in the midst of the American Revolution, five college students at William & Mary met at the Raleigh Tavern in Williamsburg, Va., and founded The Phi Beta Kappa Society. They were driven by a pursuit of personal freedom, scientific inquiry, liberty of conscience, and creative endeavor through liberal education and intellectual fellowship. . . . Today, there are those who have challenged the liberal arts and sciences as a pathway to the American ideals of freedom, equality, and opportunity.  Read more >>

 

Report: “Education is Key” to Quelling Middle East Discord

Hechinger Report

A new report from a bipartisan task force concludes that “education is key” to helping bring stability to Syria, Iraq and other troubled nations, many of whose most promising young people have fled. Addressing this, the report says, is essential not only for the Middle East, but to improving the lives and livelihoods of Americans by curbing terrorism and the spread of weapons of mass destruction and protecting the economy. Read more >>

 

Building a Network to Help First-Generation Students Succeed

Chronicle of Higher Education

To help low-income and first-generation students succeed, build them a network, says Carl Strikwerda, president of Elizabethtown College, in Pennsylvania. Students from homes or high schools where few others have gone on to college don’t have peers they can turn to for advice when times get tough. Read more >>

 

AACU
Weekly Liberal Education News Watch
Week of January 2327, 2017

See these important recent articles of interest to AAC&U members—and all those who care about liberal education and inclusive excellence. AAC&U archives other liberal education news stories online at www.aacu.org/liberal-education-news-watch and stories on issues of equity and inclusive excellence at www.aacu.org/press/news-watch/inclusive-excellence. 

Inside Higher Ed
As we begin 2017, I believe that we in higher education need to engage in a serious dialogue about our role in exacerbating the opportunity gap and our obligation going forward to close it. Read more >>
Times Higher Education
The study of history is increasingly misunderstood as obscurantist, attacked or written off as the self-indulgent preserve of wealthy undergraduates. Luckily, the drive to recognise the value of history and the humanities is also growing. But these debates by necessity see the humanities and sciences as opposites. From my particular hospital bed, it seemed increasingly, blindingly clear how much humanities and sciences—in this case history and medicine—truly complemented each other. Read more >>
Hechinger Report
We are living in an era of stunningly unreliable narration. . . . “Fake news” sites fuel one unsubstantiated conspiracy theory after another. . . . The fact is that 18-year-olds often do not have the skill sets they need to make prudent, fact-based decisions. . . . And while people can certainly acquire these in a variety of places, we specialize in this training in the domain of the liberal arts and sciences. Read more >>
National Review
College exists to impart the knowledge and skills that will meet the demands of the 21st-century economy. Art history, philosophy, . . . and their humanistic brethren have been written off as antiquated and obsolete. And here the onus shifts to humanities departments, to convince prospective majors that they won’t be left behind. . . . Read more >>
Washington Post
There are thousands of colleges in the U.S., and the vast majority of them accept far more applicants than they reject. Half of American colleges have become less selective over the past fifty years. But don’t tell that to some students and parents today who have turned college admissions into a game, where getting to Go seems to be ultimate goal rather than the education or degree itself. Read more >>
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AACU
Weekly Liberal Education News Watch
Week of January 16–20, 2017

See these important recent articles of interest to AAC&U members—and all those who care about liberal education and inclusive excellence. AAC&U archives other liberal education news stories online at www.aacu.org/liberal-education-news-watch and stories on issues of equity and inclusive excellence at www.aacu.org/press/news-watch/inclusive-excellence. 

Roth on Wesleyan Blog; also appeared on Washington Post Answer Sheet Blog
A liberal education includes deepening one’s ability to learn from people with whom one doesn’t agree, but the politics of resentment sweeping across many countries substitutes demonization for curiosity. Writing people off with whom one disagrees will always be easier than listening carefully to their arguments. Without tolerance and open-mindedness, inquiry is just a path to self-congratulation at best, violent scapegoating at worst. Read more >>
Inside Higher Ed
We have data about the value of the liberal arts. And we have personal anecdotes aplenty. So why is it so easy for naysayers to dismiss its value? Read more >>
LSE Education Blog
I’m experiencing a pedagogic quandary. Often, in my work with academics, I emphasise the benefits of making things easier for students: making our expectations of students more visible; structuring programmes, courses and lectures so they unfold in a logical way; shaping the assessment methods to be a smoother fit for the subject. Is it contradictory, then, that two of my favourite pedagogic researchers suggest making things harderRead more >>
Chronicle of Higher Education
When Elizabeth A. Bennion asked students in her political-controversies course to discuss gun control, the conversation could have dissolved into fractious debate. Her class included strong supporters and staunch opponents of gun-control legislation. Read more >>
News on Sunday
The lack of general concern, and even apathy, at the disappearance of these activists points out the sad state of academia in Pakistan. . . . Among the several purposes of a university is its public engagement. Ideas germinate, originate and begin to get realised in universities, and it is these ideas which shape the world. When universities absolve themselves of this critical responsibility, society tends to break down and several fissures begin to emerge. Read more >>
AAC&U    
To manage your AAC&U email preferences, click here.
Association of American Colleges and Universities
1818 R Street, NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 387-3760