Graduate Citizens? Issues of Citizenship and Higher Education

By John Ahier; John Beck et al. | Go to book overview

Chapter 3

Citizenship and the restructuring of higher education

3.1

Introduction

To the social democrat living in the 1960s, the growth of higher education from an elite system to one where a third of school leavers take part, could be expected to have an enhancing effect on citizenship. More people going to university might be seen to have the same kinds of social benefits as more people having any type of education. For example, it could be hoped that it would make them better informed about the society in which they live. It might make them more able to deal with the problems facing their society, better able to make a contribution to it, and, perhaps, give them an enhanced feeling for its existence and concern for its fate.

Thirty years on, in official policy documents considering the future of the higher education system, there can still be found references to such benefits for citizenship. In the 1997 Dearing Report, for example, it is acknowledged that:

higher education continues to have a role in the nation's social, moral and spiritual life; in transmitting citizenship and culture in all its variety; and in enabling personal development for the benefit of individuals and society as a whole.

(NCIHE 1997: Terms of Reference: Annex A)

But for some, these sorts of references to citizenship can now be read very differently. In particular, for those groups of academics and professionals who acquired their higher education qualifications twenty or more years ago, and then used them within the state welfare and educational services, issues of citizenship in

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Graduate Citizens? Issues of Citizenship and Higher Education
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Acknowledgements vii
  • List of Abbreviations viii
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter 1 - Citizenship in Britain 7
  • Chapter 2 - Prospects for Social National Citizenship in the United Kingdom 35
  • Chapter 3 - Citizenship and the Restructuring of Higher Education 62
  • Chapter 4 - Citizenship Themes in Students' Lives 99
  • Chapter 5 - Citizenship, Mutuality and Civil Society 132
  • Chapter 6 - Conclusion 157
  • Appendix 172
  • Notes 181
  • Bibliography 186
  • Index 197
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