ERIC Number: ED026946
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1966
Reference Count: 0
"The Aims of Higher Learning and the Control of the Universities."
Contrary to popular belief, much power is vested in university governing boards that are usually composed of individuals not professionally concerned with higher education. The Center conducted a study in 1965 of trustees at 38 member institutions of the American Association of Universities, in an effort to expand previous findings on governing board members' social characteristics, attitudes and political beliefs. Since the control of higher learning shifted from the clergy to successful businessmen in the eighteenth century, academic freedom was permitted in the area of religion. Current data reveals that while a majority of board members still approve academic freedom in religious matters, they oppose the same free pursuit of knowledge when it concerns social, economic and political issues. Today's trustees are more sympathetic to the values of the academic community than their off-campus peers. But when their attitudes are studied in relationship to the aims of higher education, data show that approximately 1 out of 3 would feel that "the university is best run along the principles of a business enterprise." They therefore tend to view faculty members merely as employees rather than competent scholars, and give the administration--along with other decision-making powers affecting educational and institutional quality--authority to select, hire, retain, and fire instructors. There is a need to reappraise the relationship between the aims of higher education and the control of universities. (WM)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Haynes Foundation Fellowship.; California Univ., Berkeley. Center for Research and Development in Higher Education.
Authoring Institution: California Univ., Berkeley.