Liberal Education, Summer/Fall 2005

Current Issue


Educating for Personal and Social Responsibility

The theme of the summer/fall issue, "educating for personal and social responsibility," explores the contribution of undergraduate education to student's moral and ethical development. Also included are a report on student attitudes toward liberal education and articles on the "chilly climate" for women in the sciences and engineering and on the integration of interdisciplinary study and participation in research into the core mission of undergraduate education.

Table of Contents

The Board of Directors of the Association of American Colleges and Universities issued the following statement on September 1, 2005.

From 1818 R Street NW

By David Tritelli

Featured Topic

By Richard H. Hersh and Carol Geary Schneider
Higher education must do more to emphasize the development of personal and social responsibility as core outcomes of a liberal education, and robust assessments of these outcomes must be developed. The time is right for a visible national effort to advance these goals. 

By Lynn E. Swaner
In 2004, AAC&U commissioned a review of the relevant literature and research on the development of personal and social responsibility during college. This article is an abridgement of the review.

By Bill Puka
Many of the programs designed to help students develop their moral insight and reasoning skills are too narrowly focused. This look at the various program foci as components of a more inclusive program encourages consideration of how some main themes can be enhanced.

By Donald L. McCabe
A liberal education encourages students to accept responsibility for the ethical consequences of their ideas and actions. Thus, the goal is not simply to reduce cheating.

By Bill Puka
Issues of academic integrity must be considered within the larger context of campus culture, which is influenced by the ethical practices of faculty and administrators as well as students.

Liberal Education and America's Promise

By Debra Humphreys and Abigail Davenport
The findings from a series of focus groups, held with high school and college students in four locations in different regions of the country, reveal student attitudes toward liberal education.


By Lucia Albino Gilbert, Paige E. Schilt, and Sheldon Ekland-Olson
The University of Texas at Austin has launched two initiatives to integrate
interdisciplinary study and participation in research into the core mission of undergraduate education. Both are rooted in the university’s identity as a large and diverse research institution and designed to provide the majority of students with the kinds of unique educational opportunities typically reserved for honors students.

By Christine Hult, Ronda Callister, and Kim Sullivan
Different types of universities are finding similar sources of dissatisfaction among women faculty in the sciences and engineering. Through participation in the National Science Foundation’s ADVANCE Program, Utah State University seeks to analyze and address the "chilly climate" for these women on its campus. 

My View

By Thomas B. Coburn
The encounter of spirituality and secularism in liberal education holds high promise for helping the contemporary academy out of its centuries-long overemphasis on the secular.

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