News on Liberal Arts in Europe, February ’19: Research, Delivery, Advocacy

News on Liberal Arts in Europe, February '19: Research, Delivery, Advocacy

2019 is off to a strong start, and ELAI is happy to provide some news from the front of European Liberal Education. This time, we have compiled brief information and links to new developments in research, delivery, and advocacy of liberal arts in Europe.

  1. A joyous celebration was held in Maastricht University on January 31st, when Teun J. Dekker was officially inaugurated as a first Professor of Liberal Arts and Sciences Education in Europe. The full house of professors, deans, and students from across the country listened to the inaugural lecture which made the case for a connection between academia and the society through the seven democratic virtues of liberal education. You can download the booklet with the speech here, but since Dekker wouldn’t be himself if he did not bend the convention, you might prefer to watch a 45 minute lecture here and see what he came up with this time. Congratulations, Teun!
  2. Speaking of the Netherlands, University College Tilburg would celebrate its Second Lustrum (10 years anniversary) on April 4th. The programme for the event titled “Dilemmas in Higher Education” has just been published, and all are welcome to register (for free). During the Lustrum a new entity is going to be officially launched: University College Academics Network (UCAN), which would aim to offer networking opportunities and raise the profile of academic teachers from Dutch university colleges.
  3. University College Roosevelt expands its curriculum by including Engineering courses. The new offer would be piloted from September 2019, and a full scale rollout is expected a year after. Regional research institutes and companies have contributed to the design of the new curriculum, where students would take traditional liberal arts courses, engineering major courses, and participate in a project during each semester. The full press release is available here.
  4. A newly established university - London Interdisciplinary School - would offer a new Bachelor of Arts and Sciences Degree starting from September 2020, but a summer school would precede in 2019. The founding team includes Professor Carl Gombrich, the brains behind the Arts and Sciences degree at UCL. First details are available here.
  5. Chavagnes International College, a private Catholic liberal arts institution in France, starts a new two-year Masters degree in ‘Arts and Letters’ targeting Christian teachers, writers, and researchers. The low residency course would award degrees in the name of Holy See. More details are available here.
  6. Dr Gavin Schwartz-Leeper from the University of Warwick Liberal Arts has authored a Guide to the Liberal Education Programs. It offers another introduction to the conceptual ground of European Liberal Education together with a brief bibliography. The document is available online.
  7. Professor Mary-Ellen Boyle from Clark University has reviewed four books on the liberal arts developments outside the United States. Read here.
  8. University of Bristol’s Liberal Arts students have organised a conference for students and staff pioneering the liberal arts across the UK on March 27th. Tickets (free) are available here, and a full program would be available later. It has been confirmed that a panel discussion would feature Professor Robert Fowler, Dr. Sarah Dillon, Dr. Kathryn Telling and Dr. Liz Bird.
  9. For the fourth time, ECOLAS has awarded Julie Johnson Kidd Travel Research Fellowship for eight proposal. The full list can be found here.
  10. Another umbrella organisation for liberal arts initiatives, GALA, has expanded its membership by Catholic University of Eastern Africa. Read more here.
  11. Professor Howard Gardner and Dr Wendy Fischman have been publishing initial findings of their large-scale study of perceptions of higher education across diverse institutions and groups of stakeholders. They discuss what they learned, when they are going to tell more, where they were proven wrong, and why a sense of belonging matters. The relevant blogs are here, here, here, and here.

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