Charged in 2007, the Liberal Education Reform Team adapted the American Association of Colleges & Universities’ definition of Liberal Education for our campus: Liberal Education is a philosophy of education that empowers individuals with broad knowledge and transferable skills and a strong sense of values, ethics and civic engagement. Characterized by challenging encounters with important and relevant issues today and throughout history, a Liberal Education prepares graduates both for socially valued work and for civic leadership in their society. It usually includes a general education curriculum that provides broad exposure to multiple disciplines and ways of knowing, along with more in-depth study in at least one field or area of concentration.
American Association of Colleges & Universities’ Resources
- The Association of American Colleges & Universities’ page on Liberal Education
- The AAC&U’s summary of findings about liberal education and jobs
- A short news article reporting on AAC&U findings (from January 2015) can be found at CBS.
- William Cronon, “Only Connect: The Goals of a Liberal Education,” published both in American Scholar (1998) and on Cronon’s website.
- Glyer & Weeks, Eds., The Liberal Arts in Higher Education: Challenging Assumptions, Exploring Possibilities (2005), available at Polk Library (view catalog record).
- Walter Russell Mead, “Back to School” in The American Interest, August 31, 2010.
- Fassbinder, Nocella & Kahn, Greening the Academy: Ecopedagogy through the Liberal Arts (2012), available through Polk Library in an e-book.
- Loretta Jackson Hayes, “We don’t need more STEM majors. We need more STEM majors with liberal arts training, “Washington Post, February 18, 2015.
- Valerie Strauss, “The Tao of the Liberal Arts,” Washington Post, January 7, 2015.
- Eric Liu, “Study liberal arts – and gain power,” CNN, May 16, 2014.
- Aristotle, Politics, Book 8, written in the 350 B.C.E., reprinted at classics.mit.edu. See especially parts II and III.
- Seneca, “Epistle LXXXVIII: On Liberal and Vocational Studies,” written in the year 62, reprinted at the website stoics.com.
- United States Congress, Morril Act, (An Act Donating Public Lands to the several States and Territories which may provide Colleges for the benefit of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts) 1862, reprinted at ourdocuments.gov, a National Archives website. See especially Section 4.
- Andrew West, “The Seven Liberal Arts,” originally published in Alcuin and the Rise of the Christian Schools (1912).