NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1144437
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 19
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1535-0584
Did the Women's Colleges Founded in the Progressive Era Represent a New Model? Connecticut College for Women as a Case Study
Marthers, Paul P.
American Educational History Journal, v40 n2 p221-239 2013
Connecticut College for Women and its Progressive Era sister colleges (Douglass, Simmons, Skidmore, and William Smith) are distinctive for the prominent vocational and service elements each college had in its original mission and curriculum. Historians however have often left Connecticut College for Women out of the story of American women's colleges. The major chroniclers of women's colleges have tended to skip from the Seven Sisters to the so-called progressive small women's colleges, Bennington, Sarah Lawrence, and Scripps, noting their path-breaking emphasis on curricular freedom of choice and learning by doing. But it has been misleading to characterize Bennington, Sarah Lawrence, and Scripps as the only progressive counterpoints to the Seven Sisters; instead, it is more accurate to contextualize them as emerging after the first wave of Progressive Era women's colleges (Connecticut, Douglass, Simmons, Skidmore, and William Smith). Although they are five colleges that have been relegated to the fine print in the story of women's higher education in America, Connecticut, Douglass, Simmons, Skidmore, and William Smith are worthy of study because they pioneered a new kind of college curriculum that fit the changing needs of women during the Progressive Era. Omitting Connecticut, Douglass, Simmons, Skidmore, and William Smith from the history of women's colleges creates a gap that impedes a full understanding of the subject. Connecticut and its Progressive Era sister colleges (Douglass, Simmons, Skidmore, and Williams Smith) warrant more attention than they have drawn from historians of women's collegeHis because they represent innovative colleges fashioned by emerging ideas about the role of women as America entered the twentieth century.
IAP - Information Age Publishing, Inc. P.O. Box 79049, Charlotte, NC 28271-7047. Tel: 704-752-9125; Fax: 704-752-9113; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Connecticut; Pennsylvania; Massachusetts; New York; Vermont; California
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A