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ERIC Number: ED401415
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996-May
Pages: 10
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Ideological Space Makers: The Need in Graduate Programs in Adult Education.
Cunningham, Phyllis
The adult education graduate program at Northern Illinois University began offering courses in 1969. Starting points of a progressive agenda were urban, race, and class. Students, many of whom had experience with the social upheavals of the 1960s, along with community-based organizers and the International Council for Adult Education, pushed the program into a more radical critique. The program gained a department chair who supported change. It became more visible as marginalized persons graduated and entered the field, and the curriculum became more critical, inclusive, and sociological. The program grew quickly from 1976. Believing the program was held hostage by flawed assumptions perpetrated in the late 19th century under the ideal of meritocracy, the chair developed cohort programs with preset curricula, group support, a schedule to accommodate the part-time student, and emphasis on leadership and policy studies. Prior to the cohorts, the adult education faculty had recruited 16 percent marginalized and 15 percent international students among 178 doctoral students; in contrast, the 3 doctoral cohort groups with 87 students had 64 percent from marginalized groups. Clearly, the cohorts were an effective way to recruit marginalized persons. The cohort concept proved to be an appropriate option for democratizing the university and increasing the graduation rate. A next step would be to develop a project that could center and extend the progressive social change agenda. (YLB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A