Part Acivilizational Perspectives on Higher Education

Part Acivilizational Perspectives on Higher Education

TPS1826 Fall 2012

Comparative Higher Education


Dr. Ruth HayhoeFall 2012

Office Rm 6-219Thursdays 17:00-20:00

om 8-220

Sep. 13Welcome & Introductions

Part ACivilizational Perspectives on Higher Education

1.Sep. 20Western Traditions of Higher Learning

2.Sep. 27Asian and Middle Eastern Traditions of Higher Learning

Part BMethodological Considerations in Comparative Higher Education

3.Oct. 4Approaches from Comparative Education

4.Oct. 11Approaches from Comparative Higher EducationGuest: George Fallis

Part CPersistence and Change in the Development of Modern Universities

5.Oct. 18EuropeGuest: Merli Tamtik

6.Oct. 25Latin AmericaGuest: Patricia Gaviria,

7.Nov. 1East Asia

8.Nov. 8Middle East Guest: Sam Mikhail

Part DComparative Themes

9.Nov. 15Governance(tentative)

10.Nov. 22Students and Student Movements (tentative)

11.Nov. 29The Professoriate (tentative)

Purpose and Approach:

This course was first developed in the mid-1980s to complement Comparative Education Theory and Methodology (1825) by focusing on higher education within the frame of comparative education theory and methodology. In 1992-3, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the emergence of a literature around the dialogue/clash of civilizations, a group of graduate students worked with me to re-think the course completely. We wanted to develop an approach to comparative higher education that emphasised culture and civilization as the basic framework, rather than the modern political economy. In 2004 and 2012, the course was again revised with student input to include new topics that generated growing scholarship and to reflect the impact of globalization on higher education.

The course attempts to introduce three distinct bodies of literatures which can be drawn upon for comparative higher education:1) a classic historical literature, 2) the literature of comparative education as it applies to higher education and social change, and 3) the specialist literature of comparative higher education, which deals mainly with sociological, economic, and anthropological aspects of higher education systems. The focus of the selected readings is on the works of scholars who have had anenduring influence.

The course begins from a civilizational perspective byexamining higher learning institutions in different world civilizations in ancient times. It then turns to the great social change period that has been termed "modernization" and introduces seminal work by comparative education scholars such as Brian Holmes, George Bereday, and Philip Altbach. These scholars compared issues in higher education using different methodologies. Next, the course highlights comparative higher education, a more contemporary field with a shorter history than comparative education. Scholars such as Burton Clark and Sheila Slaughter draw from sociology, anthropology, and political economy when comparing different national higher education systems. The course then focuses on the development of higher education in four world regions during the transition to modernity:Europe, Latin America, East Asia, and the Middle East. In addition, we have included a recent book on the “Multiversity” by York University professor George Fallis to enable us to be self-reflexive about the university model we know best, as we develop a comparative understanding of higher education in other major world regions.

The final part of the course deals with themes or issues in higher education which can be analysed using some of the theoretical frameworks suggested in the literature. This final part of the course can be adapted to students’ research interests. The three themes currently listed in the schedule are just suggested themes. If students are passionate about other themes, we highly encourage them to take the initiative and propose new themes and readings for these final three sessions (see Assignments). Other themes identified by students in the past include feminist perspectives, equity issues, alternatives to the university, and academic freedom.

The main purpose of the course is to acquaint students with the wealth of literature available for the study of comparative higher education, and to assist them in developing an understanding of the different types of literature and critical judgement for selecting material from the literature.


Evaluation for the course is based on three assignments. The first assignment (15%) is a brief critical summary of one article or book chapter dealing with traditional models of higher learning or theoretical or conceptual issues in comparative higher education. The additional readings listed for Sessions 1 to 4 are excellent pieces for review. Each student will briefly introduce and review an article or book chapter orally in class and distribute a one-page written review. A final copy should be submitted to the instructorby October 18.

A second short reflective paper (15%) should draw on selected literature (2-3 items) and focus on an issue or theme that might be pursued in the final research paper. We will organise small groups according to similarities in themes. A theme could be one of the suggested ones for the last three sessions of the course or an entirely new theme that generates interests in the class. Students will have some time in class to discuss shared research interests and plan for this second assignment as groups. In addition to the individual reflective paper, each group should facilitate a class discussion on the theme of interest and provide the class with a short bibliography of relevant resources. If you select a new theme, please recommend two core readings to the class in advance. The individual paper is due November 15.

The final paper (70%) is a research essay which analyzes an issue in higher education comparatively. Comparisons need not necessarily be between countries, but the paper should connect to one or more of the concepts, theories, or issues highlighted in the course. The length of the final paper should be 15-20 pages double-spaced. It will be due towards the end of December.

Core Reference Materials:

Forest, J., & Altbach, P. (2006). International Handbook of Higher Education, Parts One and Two. Dordecht, Netherlands: Springer.

Hayhoe, R., & Pan, J. (2001). Knowledge Across Cultures: A Contribution to Dialogue Among Civilizations. Hong Kong: Comparative Education Research Centre, University of Hong Kong.

Fallis, G. (2007). Multiversities, Ideas and Democracy. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Major Journals:

Comparative Education

Comparative Education Review

Higher Education: the international journal of higher education and educational planning

International Higher Education (newsletter from Boston College Higher Education Centre led by Professor Philip Altbach)

Access to Core Readings:

Students can access many of the core readings for each class session by logging into Blackboard ( Journal articles are presented as PDFs via the UT library’s database. Core readings which are book chapters are not usually available online in digital formats. However, the books containing these selected chapters have been placed on reserve at the OISE Library. Please speak with a librarian at the front desk to access these reserved booksto access thesebook chapters (note: these books cannot be taken out of the library).

First Day (Sep. 13):Please read the following before class. A digital copy is available on Blackboard.

Hayhoe, R., & Mundy, K. (2008). Introduction to Comparative and International Education: Why Study Comparative Education? In K. Mundy, K. Bickmore, R. Hayhoe, M. Madden, & K. Madjidi (Eds.), Comparative Education: Issues for Teachers (Chp1 pp. 1-23). New York and Toronto: Teachers College Press & Canadian Scholars Press.

Part A - Civilizational Perspectives on Higher Education

Session 1: Western Traditions of Higher Learning (Sep. 20)

Core Readings:

  • Rashdall, H.(1987). "What is a University?" Chapter One (pp. 1-24), Volume 1 of The Universities of Europe in the Middle Ages. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
  • Holmes, B. (1981). “Ideal Typical Normative Models” Chapter 6 (pp. 111-132). In Comparative Education: Some Considerations of Method. London: George Allen and Unwin.
  • Fallis, G. (2007). “The Idea of a University” Chapter Two (pp. 17-47). In Multiversities, Ideas, and Democracy. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What does Rashdall see as the main characteristics of universities as they emerged in Europe? In what ways did the Church, the guild and the monastery shape the medieval university in Europe in distinctive ways?
  2. According to Holmes, what factors must be considered when developing an ideal type for research purposes? What does a researcher aim to achieve with the use of ideal types?
  3. What are the four archetypes of a universitywhich have contributed to the modern multiversity according to Fallis? Amongthese archetypes, which one is more dominant at the institution you study/work at? Which archetype is marginalized?

Additional Readings:

Cobban, A.B., The Medieval Universities: Their Development and Organisation (London: Methuen, 1975).

Gabriel, Askiel, Garlandia: Studies in the History of the Medieval University, (Frankfurt am Main: Josef Knecht, 1969).

Haskins, Charles Homer, The Rise of the University, (Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press, 1965).

Kibre, Pearl, The Nations in the Medieval Universities, (Cambridge, Mass.: Medieval Academy of America, 1948).

Kittleson, James and Transure, Pamela [eds.], Rebirth, Reform and Resilience: Universities in Transition 13001700, (Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 1984).

*Le Than Khoi, "Towards a General Theory of Education," in Comparative Education Review, Vol. 30, No. 1, 1986, pp. 12-29.

Leff, Gordon, Paris and Oxford Univerities in the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Centuries: An Institutional and Intellectual History (New York: John Wiley and Sons, 1968).

Merchant, Carolyn, The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology and the Scientific Revolution, (San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1980).

*Noble, David, A World Without Women: The Christian Clerical Culture of Western Science (New York: Alfred Knopf, 1992), Chapter Seven, pp. 138-160, and Epilogue, pp. 279-286.

Perkin, Harold, “History of Universities” in James Forest and Philip Altbach, International Handbook of Higher Education, Parts One and Two (Dordecht, Netherlands: 2006), Part One, pp. 159-206.

Piltz, Anders, The World of Medieval Learning, (New Jersey: Barnes and Noble Books, 1981), especially pp.81149.

Rait, Robert, Life in the Medieval Universities, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1912).

*Schachner, N., The Medieval Universities (New York: A.S. Barnes and Co., 1962), especially chapters V and VII.

Sterk, Andrea, Religion, Scholarship and Higher Education: Perspectives, Models and Future Prospects (Notre Dame, Indiana: University of Notre Dame Press, 2002).

*Weber, Max, The Methodology of the Social Sciences (New York: Free Press, 1948), pp. 85-112. [Weber’s explanation of the concept and use of ideal types]

Woody, Thomas, Life and Education in Early Societies (New York: Hafner Publishing Co., 1970).

Session 2: Asian and Middle Eastern Traditions of Higher Learning (Sep. 27)

Core Readings:

  • Altekar, A.S. (1944). Education in Ancient India (Bansphatak, Varanasi: Nand Kisore and Sons, 1944) Chapter V, pp. 105-125, Chapter IX, pp. 207-227.
  • Nakosteen, M. (1964). History of Islamic Origins of Western Education A.D. 800-1350.Boulder, Colorado: University of Colorado Press. Chapter II, pp. 13-24, Chapter IX, pp. 179-195.
  • Kadi, W. (2006). Education in Islam: Myths and Truths. Comparative Education Review, 50(3), Special Issue on Islam andEducation, 311-324.
  • Hayhoe, R. (2001). “Lessons from the Chinese Academy.” In R. Hayhoe & J. Pan (Eds.), Knowledge Across Cultures: A Contribution to Dialogue among Civilizations. Hong Kong: Comparative Education Research Centre, University of Hong Kong, pp. 323-347.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What do we learn from Altekar about the ancient institutions of higher learning in India? What subjects were studied and how broad was their influence? What was the experience of women in ancient Indian education?
  2. Nakosteen’s account of the Academy of Jundi-Shapur and the ways in which it prospered during the early period of Islamic development provides a dynamic picture of early Islamic higher education. What did you find most striking in this picture? What fields of knowledge were particularly valuable to the European universities?
  3. What do you see as the most significant differences between the core values and views of knowledge in classical Chinese institutions of higher learning and the medieval universities of Europe? How does an understanding of these differences help to explain the conflicts that have arisen in the development of modern Chinese universities under Western influence? Can it be helpful in anticipating the future?
  4. Comparing madrasas to medieval universities in Europe, what are the most striking similarities and differences to you? As European colonialism spread, what were the sweeping reforms that defined the second stage of Islamic education according to Kadi?

Additional Readings:

*Altekar, A.S. "Childhood and Education," in The Position of Women in Hindu Civilization from Prehistoric Times to the Present Day (Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, 1962), pp. 1-28.

Berggren, Len, “Historical Reflections on Scientific Knowledge: The Case of Medieval Islam,” in Ruth Hayhoe and Julia Pan, Knowledge Across Cultures: A Contribution to Dialogue Among Civilizations (Hong Kong: Comparative Education Research Centre, University of Hong Kong, 2001), pp. 127-138.

Bulliet, W., The Patricians of Nishapur: A Study in Medieval Islamic Social History (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1972).

Chang Chungli, The Chinese Gentry: Studies in Their Role in the 19th Century Seattle, Washington: University of Washington Press, 1955.

Guisso, Richard and Johannesen, Stanley Women in China: Current Directions in Historical Scholarship (Lewiston, New York: The Edwin Mellen Press, 1981).

Halstead, J. Mark, “An Islamic concept of education,” Comparative Education Vol. 40, No. 4, Nov. 2004, pp. 517-529.

Hartnett, Richard, The Jixia Academy and the Birth of Higher Learning in China (Lewiston: The Edwin Mellen Press, 2011).

*Hayhoe, Ruth, “Ideas of Higher Learning, East and West: Conflicting Values in the Development of the Chinese University,” Minerva Vol. XXII, No. 4, Winter, 1994, pp. 361-382.

Herrera, Linda, “Education, Islam and Modernity: Beyond Westernization and Centralization,” Essay review of three books, in Comparative Education Review Vol. 48, No. 3, August 2003, pp. 318-326.

*Hu, C.T., "The Historical Background: Examinations and Controls in pre-modern China," Comparative Education, Vol. 20, No. 1, 1984, pp. 7-26.

Ji, Shuli, “A Modern Interpretation of Sinic Science,” in Ruth Hayhoe and Julia Pan, Knowledge Across Cultures: A Contribution to Dialogue Among Civilizations (Hong Kong: Comparative Education Research Centre, University of Hong Kong, 2001), pp. 139-151.

Ko, Dorothy et al (eds.), Women and Confucian Culture in pre-modern China, Korea and Japan (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003).

Ko, Dorothy, Teachers of the Inner Chambers: Women and Culture in Seventeenth Century China (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1994).

Makdisi, George, The Rise of Colleges in Islam and the West (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1981).

Menzel, Joanna (ed.), The Chinese Civil Service? Career Open to Talent? (Boston: D.C. Heath and Co., 1963).

Meskill, John, Academies in Ming China: A Historical Essay (Arizona: University of Arizona Press, 1982).

Miyazaki, Ichisada, China's Examination Hell (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1981).

Needham, Joseph, The Shorter Science and Civilization in China (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1978).

Rajagopal, Pinayur, “Indian Mathematics and the West” in R. Hayhoe and J. Pan (eds), Knowledge Across Cultures: A Contribution to Dialogue among Civilizations (Hong Kong: Comparative Education Research Centre, University of Hong Kong, 2001), pp. ), pp. 113-125.

Rosenthal, Franz, Knowledge triumphant; the concept of knowledge in medieval Islam (Leiden: E.J. Brill 1970).

*Stanton, Charles, Higher Learning in Islam: The Classical Period A.D. 700-1300 (Maryland: Rowman and Little Publishers, 1990), “Introduction” (pp. ix-xiii) and Chapter 7 Formal Institutions of Higher Education(pp. 21-52).

Suen, Hoi K. and Yu, Lan, “Chronic Consequences of High-Stakes Testing? Lessons from the Chinese Civil Service Exam,” Comparative Education Review, Vol. 50, No. 1, 2006, pp. 46-65.

Talbani, Aziz, “Pedagogy, Power and Discourse” Transformation of Islamic Education,” Comparative Education Review, Vol. 40, No. 1, February, 1996, pp. 66-82.

Teng Hsuyu, "Chinese Influence in the Western Examination System", in Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies, Vol. 7, No. 4, 194243.

Tibawi, A. L. "Origin and Character of Al-Madrasseh," in A.L. Tibawi, Arabic and Islamic Themes (London: Luzac and Co. Ltd., 1974).

*Weber, Max, "The Chinese Literati", in Gerth and Mills (ed.), From Max Weber: Essay in Sociology (New York: Oxford University Press, 1946), pp.416444.

Part B - Methodological Considerations in Comparative Higher Education

Session 3: Approaches from Comparative Education (Oct. 4)

Core Readings:

  • Bereday, G. (1973). Universities for All. San Francisco: Jossey Bass. Preface (vii-xiv), chapter one (1-18) and chapter eight (131-145).
  • Holmes, B. (1972). "Universities, Higher Education and Society," in Brian Holmes and David Scanlon (eds.), Higher Education in a Changing World. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc., pp. 1-12.
  • Altbach, P. (2001). Gigantic Peripheries: India and China in the International Knowledge System. In R. Hayhoe & J. Pan (Eds.), Knowledge Across Cultures. Hong Kong: Comparative Education Research Centre, University of Hong Kong, pp. 199-214.

Discussion Questions:

  1. How far have Bereday's three theoretical conclusions about mass higher education been born out in the experience of the many other nations that have moved to this phase since the early seventies?
  2. Consider how the first two readings by Holmes and Bereday exemplify hypothetico-deductive and inductive method respectively in comparative education. What strengths and weaknesses do these approaches have in dealing with issues concerning the modern university and the transition from elite to mass higher education?
  3. How would Holmes' approach help us to reflect on dimensions of societal culture and academic tradition which may shape the transition to mass higher education differently in various countries?
  4. How does Altbach’s approach to comparative education differ from that of Holmes and Bereday? What other issues in higher education can be compared using this approach? Altbach’s assessment of China and India as “gigantic peripheries” was made in 2001. Do you think this assessment is still accurate today?

Additional Readings:

Altbach, Philip, Kelly, David and Kluczynski, Jan, Higher Education in International Perspective: A Survey and Bibliography, (London, New York: Mansell, 1985).

Altbach, Philip, The Knowledge Context, (New York: SUNY Press, 1987).

*Altbach, Philip, “Globalization and the University: Realities in an Unequal World,” in James Forest and Philip Altbach, International Handbook of Higher Education, Part One (Dordecht, Netherlands: 2006), pp. 121-140.

Ashby, Eric, Universities: British, Indian, African, [London: Weidenfield and Nicolson, 1966].

BenDavid, Joseph, Centers of Learning, [New York: McGraw Hill Book Co., 1977].

Burns, Barbara, Higher Education in Nine Countries: A Comparative Study of Colleges and Universities Abroad [New York: McGraw Hill, 1971].

Cerych, Ladislav, and Sabatier, Paul, Great Expectations and Mixed Performance: The Implementation of Higher Education Reforms in Europe (London: Trentham Books, 1986).