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Outcomes of General Education

Outcomes of General Education: An Appraisal of the General College Program

Volume: 4
Copyright Date: 1943
Edition: NED - New edition
Pages: 224
  • Cite this Item
  • Book Info
    Outcomes of General Education
    Book Description:

    Is the General Education curriculum, as it has been developing, a valid and valuable one? Does it accomplish its purpose, fulfill the aims of the administrators and the faculty? The author analyzes the records to find the answers to these questions and to determine whether or not this curriculum gives students a knowledge of themselves and their environment, a sense of personal and civic responsibility, and the basic skills necessary for them to carry on their chosen work.

    eISBN: 978-1-4529-3637-6
    Subjects: Education

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-x)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. xi-2)
  3. CHAPTER 1 The General College at the University of Minnesota
    (pp. 3-11)

    Almost a million young people graduate from the high schools of America each year; another million and a half withdraw before completing the secondary school program. Of all these young people — those who receive diplomas and those who do not — less than a fifth continue their education on a full-time basis in some other institution. For the vast majority of them secondary education has been terminal education. Furthermore since only one out of every two students who go from high school into college receive diplomas or degrees, it is evident that whatever final preparation is to be given...

  4. CHAPTER 2 Evaluation in the General College
    (pp. 12-27)

    Appraisal of the more important outcomes of general education is a difficult but highly challenging task that demands the collective talent and enthusiasm of faculty, administration, and students. The evaluation of a broad educational program can never be the responsibility of one individual, for no single person can possibly collect and adequately appraise the many kinds of evidence necessary for judging its actual worth. A cooperative approach to appraisal has been attempted, and to some degree realized, at the General College. Since a definite philosophy of evaluation has guided the choice of specific procedures and instruments, the point of view...

  5. CHAPTER 3 Objectives of the General College
    (pp. 28-45)

    Evaluation studies should be conceived and developed in terms of the goals that a particular institution has set for itself. The pertinence of these objectives to the students in the college and to the social order in which the college functions should of course be vigorously questioned; for the goals themselves are as legitimate a province for evaluation as are the procedures and techniques employed in an effort to realize them. There is first of all an obligation, however, to find out how well the college is achieving what it believes to be its major purposes. The extent to which...

  6. CHAPTER 4 Backgrounds, Interests, and Abilities of Students
    (pp. 46-64)

    Underlying every attempt to instruct or to counsel is the human equation, and no college can hope to assist a student in gaining an insight into his abilities and in selecting promising areas for his development unless his individual potentialities and motivations are known. It is not enough to know only what schools a student has previously attended, his length of stay in each one, the quality of his academie work, and his age and sex. The home from which he comes, his special aptitudes, his recreational interests, his personal adjustments and social outlook, and his hopes and goals for...

  7. CHAPTER 5 Progress in the General College
    (pp. 65-77)

    The General College attempts to provide appropriate educational experiences for young people whose needs cannot be met by the four-year liberal arts college. In order to evaluate properly this program of general education we must know the length of time these students remain in college and the kinds of learning opportunities of which they avail themselves while there. It is evident, of course, as the Pennsylvania studies¹ and hosts of others definitely show, that neither a student’s length of stay nor his exposure to certain courses can insure the attainment of desirable educational outcomes. But it is also true that...

  8. CHAPTER 6 Readiness for Continued Learning
    (pp. 78-94)

    One purpose in establishing the General College was to provide a kind of laboratory where students of moderate academic ability, or those whose aptitude for extended university work seemed doubtful, could be carefully studied over a period of time. Just which members of such a group should be encouraged to spend the next few years in the academic and professional schools of the university and which should be advised to seek out-of-school opportunities? The problem is a vital one, for although only a small minority of General College students might be expected to take further training, it is important to...

  9. CHAPTER 7 Orientation to Personal Living
    (pp. 95-117)

    One of the most vigorously endorsed aims of the General College program has been to develop in the student an understanding of his own drives, abilities, interests, and goals, so that, recognizing the pattern of his strengths and weaknesses, he may enter more actively and fully into the life about him. The General College counseling service and the special courses planned to help young people to attain physical and mental health and to broaden and enrich their social relationships indicate how genuinely the whole staff has been concerned with their students’ growth in self-understanding and self-direction. Because of the importance...

  10. CHAPTER 8 Preparation for Home and Family Living
    (pp. 118-128)

    Increasing provisions have been made in the General College program for students to grow in their understanding of problems that touch closely upon their daily living. One area commonly ignored by schools and colleges, that of home and family relationships, has received special attention in the General College because of its importance to students now and in the future. From the very start of the program several euthenics courses have been offered by the university’s Division of Home Economies and its School of Business Administration. These dealt with such problems of home and family living as the care of young...

  11. CHAPTER 9 Vocational Readiness
    (pp. 129-143)

    Since eight out of ten General College students do not continue in college beyond their sophomore year, the preparation that they have received for earning a living becomes one searching and thoroughly practical test of the value of their schooling. That General College students stand in special need of vocational help is evidenced in many ways, as, for example, by the obviously misguided choices of careers that many of them express at entrance to college. In these unrealistic aims they are abetted by their parents, whose thinking is dominated by middle-class attitudes toward vocational problems. As Williams has pointed out,...

  12. CHAPTER 10 Socio-Civic Competence
    (pp. 144-160)

    A conviction that college should effectually prepare young people for the responsibilities and privileges of citizenship, both now and in their long out-of-school years, has undergirded the General College venture from its very start. During the earliest years of the program, more than half of all the courses offered were aimed at deepening students’ understanding of the social, economic, and political order and inclining their thinking toward socially worth-while goals. One evidence of this interest was the requirement that each student take a comprehensive examination attesting his acquaintance with current affairs. In more recent years the social studies courses have...

  13. CHAPTER 11 Students’ Attitudes toward the General College Program
    (pp. 161-190)

    Any experimental college must continually check the effectiveness of its own program by finding out what students and former students consider to be its present strengths and weaknesses. This does not imply that young people’s opinions should be used as a sole, or even a primary, basis for judging the success of the college. The popularity of a curriculum is no convincing indication that it is building satisfactory educational outcomes. Experiences that have important implications for students’ future living may conceivably be those to which they attach little immediate worth. It is reasonable to suppose, however, that young people will...

  14. CHAPTER 12 Summary and Implications
    (pp. 191-210)

    The General College at the University of Minnesota differs in many ways from the typical institution of higher learning in America today. In the first place, it was established to provide an appropriate type of education for groups of young people comparatively new to our American colleges — young people whose needs do not seem to be met by either the traditional liberal arts curriculum or the various professional schools. By establishing a separate college for students of moderate academic talent or uncertain vocational orientation or those with a real desire for general education, the administration hoped that more attention...