ERIC Number: EJ797115
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-May-16
Reference Count: 0
Mystery and Humility in General Education
Musgrove, Laurence E.
Chronicle of Higher Education, v54 n36 pB28 May 2008
As the director of a new general-education program at the Roman Catholic university where he teaches, the author recently spent time introducing their curriculum to a variety of campus constituencies. On two occasions, members of their Board of Trustees asked him how the new courses would contribute to students' religious development and to the university's Catholic identity. He could offer only a stumbling response. Then last summer, his college's dean offered him the opportunity to attend Collegium. Affiliated with the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities, Collegium is a weeklong symposium in which faculty members can learn about the connections between the Catholic intellectual tradition and their professional interests. It is designed primarily around a series of small-group sessions in which cross-disciplinary teams respond to shared reading assignments. Those include primary documents from the Second Vatican Council, as well as more-recent articles on the distinctive nature of scholarship and teaching in American Catholic colleges and universities. In this article, the author describes how "Finding God in All Things: A Sacramental Worldview and Its Effects," a 2001 article by Michael J. Himes, a theologian from Boston College, a Jesuit institution, had helped him see general education--that series of core courses required of all under-graduates--as a journey that seeks to explore the mysteries of creation, humanity, and God. He came to believe that such a curriculum should help students see that every path has its limits--that in each discipline they study, they can travel only so far. In other words, in the Catholic tradition, general education should prompt students to practice and develop humility, that premier scholarly virtue.
Descriptors: General Education, Spiritual Development, Catholic Educators, Church Related Colleges, Values Clarification, Values Education, Foundations of Education, Meetings
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A