Liberal Education for a Land of Colleges: Yale's Reports of 1828

Hardcover | March 15, 2010

byDavid B. Potts

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Yale's Reports, published in 1828, is a seminal publication for understanding the development of American higher education. Giving highest priority to critical thinking skills, this fifty-six-page pamphlet played a central role in clearly delineating teaching objectives, modes of learning, and range of curriculum for the nation’s colleges. In a deeply researched and well-crafted analytical narrative, David B. Potts introduces Yale’s document, probes its origins and message, surveys its national reception, and assesses its import for liberal education, both then and now. His broadly contextual approach helps readers understand why the young republic, informed and encouraged by Yale’s rationale, became a land of liberal arts colleges.

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Yale's Reports, published in 1828, is a seminal publication for understanding the development of American higher education. Giving highest priority to critical thinking skills, this fifty-six-page pamphlet played a central role in clearly delineating teaching objectives, modes of learning, and range of curriculum for the nation’s colle...

David B. Potts is a historian of American colleges and universities and has served liberal arts education in a variety of roles: professor of American history, scholar-in-residence, academic dean, alumnus, and trustee. He is a graduate of Wesleyan University and received his Ph.D. from Harvard. His most recent book is Wesleyan Univers...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:262 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 0.62 inPublished:March 15, 2010Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230622038

ISBN - 13:9780230622036

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Table of Contents

Introductory Essay: A Land of Colleges * American Colleges, Fall 1828 * Reports on the Course of Instruction in Yale College (1828) * Annotations for Yale’s Reports of 1828 * Yale’s Undergraduate Curriculum 1828/29 * The Substance of Two Reports of the Faculty of Amherst College (1827) * Amherst’s Undergraduate Curriculum 1828/29 * Remarks on Changes Lately Proposed or Adopted, in Harvard University (1825) * Harvard’s Undergraduate Curriculum 1827/28 * A Note on the Research * Roger L. Geiger, Context for a Compelling and Cogent Case

Editorial Reviews

"This book is essential for understanding the early national system of collegiate education in the United States.Potts, one of a very small number of the leading historians of higher education, has here pulled together an indispensable sourcebook on Yale's Reports of 1828, perhaps the most influential document of the era. Everyone seriously interested in the origins of American colleges will want this book for his library." - Stanley N. Katz, Director, Center for Arts and Cultural Policy Studies, Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University "With this marvelous work of historical scholarship, Potts makes Yale's Reports of 1828 accessible not only by the act of reprinting but also by undertaking the scholarly work of placing this document into context and rightly insisting upon its continuing relevance to liberal learning, which we now reference as critical thinking.Too often caricatured, the Yale document is foundational for the liberal arts tradition in the United States. It ranks in importance with Charles W. Eliot's "Inaugural Address" (1869) as president of Harvard and Harvard's postwar faculty report, General Education in a Free Society (1945). Together, these documents are fundamental for any consideration of the future of liberal education." - Thomas Bender, University Professor of the Humanities and Professor of History, New York University "With rich detail Potts sets in context an educational landmark often cited but all too shallowly understood. His insightful interpretation should find admirers in the broadest reaches of social and intellectual history." - Hugh Hawkins, Anson D. Morse Professor of History and American Studies, emeritus, Amherst College "With its superb introductory essay, this book will be an indispensable acquisition for any library that holds materials on the history of American education. It will also be indispensable for any collection that is concerned with liberal or general education." - Jurgen Herbst, Professor of History and Educational Policy Studies emeritus, University of Wisconsin "David Potts's learned volume is a most welcome and able contribution both to the historiography and to the current discussion of undergraduate education." - Bruce Kimball, Professor of Education at Ohio State University