Course Description (taken from the course syllabus):
Until recently, the recorded history of Canadian higher education was found mostly in single institutional studies which served more as tributes to individual universities than as serious contributions to educational history. In the last 25 years, significant strides have been made in exploring the social and intellectual history of higher education in Canada and elsewhere, and this course seeks to reflect that development.
After introducing students to different approaches to studying the development of higher education, the course examines the emergence and evolution of the university in Western Europe. It then turns to Canada and studies the origins and development of universities since the mid-nineteenth century, focusing on the Ontario experience. The course emphasizes the social and intellectual history of university life, and attempts to provide a context for the discussion of contemporary issues. The conflict between the sacred and the secular, the experience of women, student culture and politics, professionalization, universities and war, academic freedom, the rise of community colleges, and the political economy of higher education since the 1960s comprise a number of course themes. Using the university as a prism, the course is designed to provide students with an appreciation of the interplay between educational and social change. It will deepen students’ understanding of historical interpretation and the use of evidence. It will provide a foundation for the informed discussion and scholarly exploration of current developments in post-secondary education. (taken from the course syllabus)
Assignment: Major Essay
There are three parts to the major essay assignment. The first is a one-page description of the essay topic plus annotations of five of the sources you plan to use in your research. An annotation is a one-paragraph summary of the approach, theme(s), conclusion etc. of the article/report/book etc. Proposals should be submitted by email. Students may explore subjects not covered in the course, including comparative themes. Contemporary topics may be chosen (e.g. access, governance, student identities, institutional management, teaching and learning etc.) so long as the research includes a historical perspective. Secondly, students will give a report (about 10 minutes) of their essay in progress in one of the two last classes of the term. They should explain the reasons for the topic they have chosen, sources employed, and preliminary conclusions. This is an opportunity to get feedback from the class before the final paper is written. (taken from the course syllabus)