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Gone for Good: Tales of University Life after the Golden Age by Stuart Rojstaczer

By Stuart Rojstaczer

Amid the clamorous debates on political correctness, the Western canon, and alcohol abuse on campus, many observers have didn't observe the main radical swap within the American college: the Golden Age of huge govt investment is long gone. And, as Stuart Rojstaczer issues out during this incisive examine better schooling, the results are affecting nearly each element of college life.Laced with funny and insightful anecdotes, long gone for sturdy is a hugely own journey of the collage procedure because it has developed from the honour days of extraordinary post-WWII progress to the monetary stresses that now beset it. Stuart Rojstaczer, professor of Hydrology at Duke, exhibits how virtually limitless investment throughout the chilly struggle years inspired universities to turn into unwieldy behemoths--with ever-enlarging colleges and administrative staffs, an explosion of recent constructions which are proving high priced to keep up, and a parade of courses designed mostly to provoke different universities. Rojstaczer asserts that regardless of the shortage of latest investment assets, universities proceed to try for limitless growth--with disastrous effects: skyrocketing institution (well over $20,000 in keeping with yr at best tier schools); determined makes an attempt to extend enrollments (lower criteria, inflated grades, and new majors in a few particularly unbelievable parts of study); and lengthening strain on college who already spend extra time gaining knowledge of than educating to elevate extra money via study supplies. The time has come, Rojstaczer argues, to desert an superseded thought of development and create a leaner college procedure greater to either scholars and society.For mom and dad, scholars, and somebody better schooling, long gone for stable bargains a bright account of the crossroads the place universities now stand--and a compelling argument approximately which course they need to take.

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Additional info for Gone for Good: Tales of University Life after the Golden Age

Sample text

In making most of my changes, I was foolishly trying to increase enrollment by improving the class content. I was avoiding the obvious. If I wanted reasonable enrollment in my undergraduate classes, I had to lower my standards. Finally, after six years, I decided that I had to completely revamp my teaching approach for undergraduates. I didn't want to teach to nearly empty classrooms and neither did Duke. At about this time, my university came to the realization that the era of exponential growth in higher education had ended.

Nowadays, I still feel this way, but from a practical matter (my enrollments would be negligible if I followed my feelings), I have to spend more time appeasing the slackers. I should say that I was (naively) surprised by the large number of slackers I had to teach in this class. I came to one of the better universities in the country and expected to teach bright, strongly motivated students. Most were very bright, but quite a few were not motivated. They were clearly here principally for the social aspect of college rather than for an education.

The exam grades varied more widely. The average class grade on the short essay exams was about a B to B minus. I thought that this was pretty good for grades, but remember I had not taught for ten years. What was an acceptable average grade in 1980 was not acceptable in 1991 (or today). 4 from 1986 through 1994 before it stabilized. Similar changes had taken place across the country in the 19708 to 19803. In the eleven years since my first teaching experience, professors were grading easier almost everywhere.

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