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May 27, 1962 - Image 6

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1962-05-27

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GE six




:ommittee Reports Statement on

' 'Philosophy

(EDITOR'S NOTE: The Senate
Subcommittee on the Proper Role
of the University has prepared this
statement of alms of the University
and their application for the Con-
ference on the University held last
weekend. Although it carries no ex-
licit statement to this effect, their
deliberations led to this general
statement which is intended to ap-
ply to both the specific problems of
the University and to its role in the
state program 'of higher education.
The committee includes Professors
Edward S. Bordin of the psychology
department, and Howard W. Mc-
Cluskey of the education school, co-
chairmen, Lyle E. Craine of the nat-
ural resources school, Joe G. Eisley
of the engineering college,GSamuel
J. Eldersveld of the political science
department, Harold F. Falls of the
Medical School, Meyer S. Ryder of
the business administration school,
and Gerald F. Else of the classical
studies department, ex-officio.)
HE UNIVERSITY faces a num-
ber of problems stemming from
the importance of both research
and scholarship-complicated by
the political and financial crises
in the state and by the general
questioning of the aims and effec-
tiveness of our educational system.
There are demands for expan-
sion in student body, in faculty
'research, in centers outside Ann
Arbor, and in the organizational
structure of the University. It
seems unlikely that all these de-
mands can be met-some sort of
a selective response will be neces-
sary. We are likely to be forced
to decide how much of our limited
faculty resources should go to re-
search versus teaching, to under-
graduate versus graduate and pro-
fessional education, to Ann Arbor
development versus extension or
branch programs.
To meet these problems, the
faculty and administration must
establish a consensus on the edu-
cational objectives of the Univer-

sity and their order of importance
-yet there seems to have been
no recent attempt to make an ex-
plicit statement of our goals. Per-
haps our general educational aims
are self-evident-revealed in com-
mencement speeches and dedica-
tory addresses.
But we propose to try to go
beyond these generalities in this
statement, and come to grips with
the tests of our commitments that
reside in the more specific classes
or decisions that we face now or
in the near future. Insofar as the
principles we formulate permit,
we will propose definitive answers
to the current dilemma the Uni-
versity faces. By such specific pro-
posals we hope to make plain the
significance of our suggested prin-
We hope our products will lead
to debate, clarification, and, above
all, a basis for action by the Sen-
ate and administration on current
and future problems.
s . "
WE CAN BEGIN with those gen-
eral statements for which there is
usually easy agreement. This Uni-
versity - almost any university
worthy of the name-is dedicated
to scholars and scholarship. The
University nurtures both. To some
degree, of course, future scholars
come to us with capacities to func-
tion as students that they have
already acquired (or perhaps are
born with) and at least latent
motivations for scholarly tasks.
Yet to a considerable extent
scholars are made in the univer-
sity environment. Thus, one of
our major aims is the inspiration
and preparation of scholars, of
men and women who will respond
to our teaching in the wide variety
of ways that knowledge enriches

the lives of individuals and socie-
ties. In relation to knowledge it-
self, the University strives for its
preservation, transmission and ex-
tension, and to initiate patterns
of its application to individual and
social needs.
It is well that we embrace both
the acquisition and application of


knowledge because
establish lasting
tween applied and

all efforts to
contrasts be-
basic research

tend to end in confusion.
The University also has a goal
of contributing to the growth of
citizens, especially of future lead-
ers. This responsibility is often
overlooked at the university level
because it is such a significant
part of the aims of primary and
secondary education. This aim of
fostering citizen education is one
stimulus toward keeping higher
education broad so that the schol-
ar, no matter how specialized, may
still keep perspective on his rela-
tion to man and society.
Obviously, a public institution
cannot draw slarp boundaries be-
tween its students and the rest
of the citizens. The University has
obligations to make available to
the citizens of the state and na-
tion that portion of its specialized
knowledge which provides the
necessary background for social
decisions, since it receives funds
from both state and federal
* * *
IF WE ASSUME agreement with
these general aims, we face the
more difficult task of defining
how these aims relate to each
other; and, where choices must
be made, of establishing priorities
amongst them. In the determina-
tion of priorities, we should dis-
tinguish among (a) function, (b)

clientele, and (c) place where
function is performed: that is,
what the University does; for
whom it is done, and where it is
We should further remember
that even though we may be com-
mitted to a particular function,
there may be limitations in carry-
ing it out, especially with regard to
clientele and location. With these
considerations in mind, it may be
useful to try framing certain ex-
plicit propositions in relation to
our aims.
Proposition 1: A university has
an organic character which im-
poses irreplaceable sets of recipro-
cal relationships such as those
among basic disciplines and be-
tween the disciplines and fields
of practice, teaching and research,
different levels and types of teach-
Proposition 2: Where choices
must be made, our highest com-
mitment is to the existing and
future leaders of our society, those
who have the greatest potential
for transferring learning.
Proposition 3: The University
should give priority to activities
(assuming equal importance) in
those areas where it has establish-
ed leadership, and/or where its
resources are unusual or unique.
This is another way of saying
that our acceptance of new re-
sponsibilities must at least con-
form to the University's establish-
ed standards of excellence.
Proposition 4: The University
prizes most those contributions to
individuals or institutions that
further their autonomy. We teach
in order to free the student to
learn by his independent efforts.
We serve in order that our clien-
tele will not need our services..
"Services," meaning the continued
performance of the same function
for the same client, are to be
Proposition 5: The University
takes seriously that it is a com-
munity of scholars and that its
effective functioning depends on
fostering growth and maintaining
high morale within this commun-
ity. Other things being equal,
highest professional growth of the
staff, maintain or raise their mor-
ale; and bring them into closer
working relationships in terms of
methods, content and goals.
Having stated the general aims
of the University and having es-
tablished these propositions as
guides, we shall proceed by posing
issues and, where possible, sug-
gesting how they might be re-


ognize a greater independence be-
tween teaching and research than
is usually admitted, and it may be
entirely feasible, indeed in the
best interests of the University, to
engage in one of these activities
without being personally and di-
rectly involved in the other.
As a basis for discussion, we
suggest that the following types of
faculty appointments be distin-
1) Research professor (no teach-
2) Undergraduate teaching pro-
fessor (no research required)
3) Graduate teaching and re-
search professor (both teaching
and research, not at graduate
levels only)
4) Joint undergraduate and
graduate professor (research in-
volvement, graduate and under-
graduate teaching-the rare schol-
ar who has the rare appetite and
skills to stimulate both the gen-
eral and specialized student.)
It may prove desirable to adopt
a pattern of dividing the Univer-
sity into two faculties, under-
graduate and graduate, separately
budgeted, with a few appoint-
ments overlapping the two facul-

THE FACADE-The television center uses a crane to photo-
graph the inscription on the front of Angell Hall.

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We Have All Kinds of Glass-Mirrors and Furniture Tops
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Free Parking in Front of Our Store

would appear to be no conflict{
between research-let us speak in
the broad sense of the search for
knowledge - and teaching. The
teacher who does not maintain his
roots in research runs the risk
of delivering the dry husks of
scholarship to his students instead
of instilling the moving, living
process of understanding and
Our national crises have ac-
celerated growth in the nation's
appetite for research with the re-
sult that staff members find ever
increasing encouragement and-
support for their scholarly ac-
tivities, so much so that many
have found it possible to teach
less and less. Further, the flow
of research funds gives rise to
the position of the scientists, who
is not a member of the teaching
faculty. It might be argued that
there should be no teaching with-
out research.
Not only must the University
remain a center for the accumula-
tion of knowledge, but the very
process of acquiring and applying
knowledge provides facilities for
educating our students to research
or the arts of applying their learn-
ing. Should there be research with-
out teaching? An affirmative an-
swer is easy to give as long as
the diversion of resources to re-
search does not impair the per-
formance of our teaching function.
But the aforementioned social
demand for research joined with
population growth accompanied by
greater interest in and ability to
profit from higher education
threaten to outstrip the supply of
academic staff to the point where
such cruel choices will be forced
on us. It is already on us in the
form of increased use of teaching
Obviously, this question is of
the variety: Which is more im-
portant the heart or the brain?
With due awareness of the or-
ganic relation, we suggest that, at
the extreme, the student is morei
important than research. Research
is the derived product. When
scholars are not replaced, scholar-
ship ceases.
* * *
ALTHOUGH the above state-
ments offer an attractively co-
hesive position, they conflict with

the realities of our complex, heter-
ogenous university. The facts ares
that: -
1) We have researchers who
shun teaching.
2) We have undergraduateF
teachers who, though possibly"
familiar with research in their
field, do not themselves activelyI
engage in research.
3) We even have tenure level
profesors who are presumed to
teach graduate students how tot
do research, but who do not en-
gage in research.
4) The University is continually
under many pressures to empha-
size research more, make moret
research appointments, give time1
off for research.
5) The quality of undergraduate'
teaching, especially in large in-
troductory courses, is criticized for
a variety of reasons, among which
is the use of teaching fellows and
the refusal of professors to teach
undergraduate courses.
6) The reputation of the Uni-
versity rests as much if not more
on its research and scholarly pro-
ductivity as on its teaching excel-
Some way must be found to
preserve the University's eminence
as a center for advanced learning
and research and to restore it to a
position of greater prominence in
undergraduate education.
We suggest that there are at
least five kinds of teaching and
teaching goals:
1) Informing-for transmission
of knowledge
2) Creativity-for freeing the
student for exploration of the un-
3) Critical analysis-for teach-
ing the student the processes
through which "truth" is confirm-
ed or disconfirmed
4) Theory formation and testing
-for teaching the student how
"truth is formalized so as to be
amenable to scholarly analysis
5) Conclusion forming-prepar-
ing the student for the kinds of
personal or social value judgments
that, while not violating know-
ledge, lie beyond it.
It seems clear to us that not
all kinds of teaching (e.g. inform-
ing or conclusion forming) de-
mand a teacher-researcher and,
further, that not all courses will
or need to incorporate all five
aims. It appears necessary to rec-

ture the full implications of this
issue. Our statement of general
aims asserts that the University's
functions do not end with the ac-
quisition of new knowledge, but
extend to the initiation of pat-
terns through which this under-
standing is put to use.
For example, our professional
schools are centers for a great
deal of such activity. In this re-
gard, we offer a direct service to
citizens of the state or nation who
are not themselves engaged in the
processes of scholarship. There
may be a parallel here with the
relation between research and
teaching. Our involvement with
the applications of knowledge
feeds back stimulation to the re-
search process.
As one illustration, medical prac-
tice in the University Hospital
feeds on the contributions of the
biophysical and biosocial sciences
and,.in turn, offers them nourish-
ment through the observations ac-
cumulated in the field. Yet the
offering of direct services can go
beyond the purposes of initiation.
Often, we respond to the ex-
pedient goal of "public relations"
and, once established, the service
becomes its own justification for
existence. It seems clear that, if
our energies are not to be diverted
from our main task, we must be
critical of any direct service which
diverts us from our dedication to
teaching, research and initiation.
We have proposed that, insofar as
possible, service should be self-
limiting in the sense of Proposi-
tion 4.
* * *
THE FORCES of social respon-
sibility, political philosophy, poli-
tical maneuvering, and scholarly
and professional purpose form
a maelstrom around this issue.
Partly it is an administrative ques-
tion: Shall the state's growing
needs for higher education be

met by expansion of the Uni-
versity via a mitotic-like process?
However, we -go beyond admin-
istrative question when we con-
sider whether our teaching re-
sponsibilities extend beyond our
full-time students and our formal
students into the region of adult
education. Let us dispose of the
easy aspects, namely, that the
University cannot abdicate its re-
sponsibility to a student when he
graduates. Alma Mater must re-
main enough of a parent to offer
resources for extension and re-
newal of learning as the need
Much extension teaching by fac-
ulties in our professional and
graduate schools is of this variety.
As such, it serves a useful func-
tion in making possible a greater
volume of professional and grad-
uate education than could be pro-
vided within an Ann Arbor based
Following Proposition 5 suggests,
however, that the faculty's needs
for professional growth, its need
for time for mutual exchange and
intellectual stimulation, may es-
tablish practical limits over how
far the University may profitably
expand its extension teaching
without endangering faculty
growth and morale.
These same considerations may
force limitations in how far the
University goes in offering ser-
vices designed to contribute to the
alertness of our general citizenry
-services of general adult educa-
tion. It is certain that we will
want to offer these services only.
when we can meet our own stan-
dards of excellence and where
highly motivated students are
Activities solely motivated by
public relations are incompatible
with our purposes and are, in the
end, unlikely to prove good public
relatins. We should avoid the posi
tion of promoting demands for
such services, of drumming up
business with mildly involved stu-
* * *
THERE IS a general readiness
to accept the proposition that this
university by virtue of its faculty
and facilities can perform, a
unique function in graduate and
professional education. At the
same time there exists a disposi-
tion to agree that the meaningful
life of a center for graduate and
professional education demands
thta undergraduate teaching con-
tinue to maintain its place in our
Further, there is the univer-
sally shared determination that
enrollment increases should not be
at the expense of maintaining and
even improving our standards for
selecting students and the stand-
ards of our teaching.
To the extent that we accept
that education is a continuous
process, an emphasis on graduate
and professional education cannot
exempt us from our involvement
in pre-professional and under-
graduate preparation. Graduate
and undergraduate education are
sufficiently related that organic
separation threatens the whole.
WE CAN SAY, and truly so, that
a university's obligation is to man.
But in so saying we shall not have
disposed of the possible conflict of
obligation that any great univer-
sity which is also a state institu-
tion must encounter. The vast

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