“Cathy Davidson, the author of a new book, The New Education, visited Georgetown today.
In a conversation about the book, she reviewed the historical roots of many of the practices of the modern university, many lying with Charles Eliot at Harvard in the late 19th century. These include the organization into departments, fields that separated the humanities and sciences, testing, grading systems, faculty career lines, tenure, and the devotion to research activities among faculty. Her thesis is that this organization was appropriate for the dawn of important industrial developments and global financial systems at the time. It seems less well suited, she argued, for a world in which communication across the world is available to all with an internet connection, when much of human knowledge is digitally documented, and when technology is redefining how different pieces of knowledge might be combined.”
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