Liberal Education, Fall 2006

Current Issue


Faculty Work

This issue foregrounds the need for a comprehensive and transformative approach to the reorganization of faculty work. Articles examine threats to professional autonomy, the future of faculty governance, and support for faculty in the middle phase of their careers. Also included are the winning student essays from the University of Wisconsin System’s Liberal Arts Scholarship Competition and articles exploring the roles of “social justice” and “other ways of knowing” in liberal education.

Table of Contents
President's Message

By Carol Geary Schneider

From 1818 R Street NW

By David Tritelli

Featured Topic

By R. Eugene Rice
The current context requires a comprehensive and transformative approach to the reorganization of faculty work; an additive or incremental approach to reform is insufficient. In exploring new ways of organizing faculty work in the twenty-first-century academy, it is important to build on the strengths of the past.

By Neil Hamilton
The failure of the academic profession to renew the social contract in each generation through intentional socialization on faculty professionalism will eventually lead to further loss of professional autonomy.

By Stanley Aronowitz
The relative powerlessness of most faculty senates and the independence of unions suggest that the time may be propitious to raise the possibility that, if unions choose to become involved in governance issues, there is a chance to reverse the long-term trend toward faculty disempowerment.

By Roger G. Baldwin and Deborah A. Chang
Despite the critical roles they play, faculty members in the middle phase of their careers have been largely ignored in higher education policy and practice. The authors examine existing strategies for supporting mid-career faculty and propose a process for mid-career faculty development.

Liberal Education and America's Promise

Three undergraduate students from University of Wisconsin System campuses have won the first annual Liberal Arts Scholarship Competition, established to support and promote
liberal education throughout the state’s public university system. Published here are the winning essays on the value of a liberal arts education in the twenty-first century.


By James V. Schall, SJ
Does justice, especially what is now called “social justice,” have any place in liberal education?

By Anthony Mansueto
The earliest organization of liberal education—the medieval quaestio form—remains the best. Restoring this question-centered approach, and adapting it to the new global context, would enable colleges and universities to provide an education that is both rigorous and accessible.

By Todd S. Hutton
Progress has been made in bringing liberal arts and professional programs together, although the professions have reached farther across the aisle to bridge the old divisions. The challenge is to achieve an authentic mutual integration of liberal and professional learning objectives.

My View

By Michael C. McFarland, SJ
Institutions committed to liberal education cannot shy away from the fundamental questions students are bringing with them about faith and the intellectual life, about the source and content of our ethical obligations, about the nature and meaning of the world and their place in it.

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