Download e-book for kindle: Excellence without a soul : does liberal education have a by Harry Lewis

By Harry Lewis

America's nice study universities are the envy of the world—and none extra so than Harvard. by no means sooner than has the contest for excellence been fiercer. yet whereas striving to be unsurpassed within the caliber of its school and scholars, Universities have forgotten that the elemental function of undergraduate schooling is to show children into adults who will take accountability for society. In Excellence with out a Soul, Harry Lewis, a Harvard professor for greater than thirty years and Dean of Harvard university for 8, attracts from his adventure to provide an explanation for how our nice universities have deserted their project. Harvard is exclusive; it's the richest, oldest, strongest college in the USA, and so it has set many criteria, for larger or worse. Lewis evaluates the mess ups of this grand institution—from the new button factor of grade inflation to the new controversy over Harvard's dealing with of sexual misconduct cases—and makes an impassioned argument for switch. The lack of function in America's nice schools isn't inconsequential. Harvard, Yale, Stanford—these locations force American schooling, on which a lot of our destiny relies. it's time to ask whether or not they are doing the task we wish them to do

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He voiced opinions but advanced no reasoned intellectual agenda. Eliot transformed Harvard by relentless cycles of thought, persuasion, and execution; he grew a parochial college into a great university. Summers complained of Harvard’s parochialism, but through arrogance and poor planning, he squandered Eliot’s legacy. Eliot’s call for excellence came with the equally revolutionary determination to make all subjects available to all students. Students’ freedom to choose their studies had diminished in the years leading up to Eliot’s installation, and what choice remained was tied to the student’s class year.

A faculty committee appointed by the dean modified the curriculum to allow students to have fewer Core requirements if they studied abroad than if their whole education was in Cambridge. The required science courses are the ones students most often choose to avoid. 24 Excellence Without a Soul the other recommendations were structural and pedagogical, for example, calendar reform and limits on the number of courses in a major. The report used the standard academic device for sweeping issues under the rug when a committee decides they are not important—a formal recommendation that they be studied further.

But he knew that teaching needed drastic revision if the plan was to be successful. And like the new industrialists who were revolutionizing transportation, communications, and manufacturing, he envisioned that mass production and increased quality might go hand in hand. The actual problem to be solved is not what to teach, but how to teach. The revolutions accomplished in other fields of labor have a lesson for teachers. . When millions are to be fed where formerly there were but scores, the single fish-line must be replaced by seines and trawls, the human shoulders by steam-elevators, and the wooden-axled ox-cart on a corduroy road by the smooth-running freight train.

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