Individual Training in Our Colleges

By Clarence F. Birdseye | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XXXII RECAPITULATION OF THE PRESENT HANDICAPS OF THE COLLEGE MAN, BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER HIS COLLEGE COURSE

IT is not possible, without some repetition of the suggestions already made, to state the relative disadvantages of the college student of to-day. On the whole, each generation has a harder time than its predecessor, because a higher civilization produces greater and more numerous problems without a corresponding increase in competent problem solvers.

Advancing civilization increases problem.

The college students' handicaps may be divided into three periods; those before, during and after his college course.


The handicaps before his college course.

The enlarged entrance requirements necessitate two or three additional years of study and a correspondingly increased age of leaving college and entering business or a profession. It is no longer true that there is "comparatively little below the college course and almost nothing above it." The secondary course is greatly improved, and is not meant chiefly for the college student, but aimed rather to help those not going to college. Formerly the boy going to college left no competitors behind, for he was going to the only place where higher education could be obtained. Today he leaves behind nine others who have had a better education for their purposes than he has for his, and in many respects have a better education than the average college student could have obtained fifty or seventy-five years ago. The schools have become large and more or less machine-like, and their former Individual Training has passed away, so that he has missed that. Because of local, social and other surroundings, he may have formed bad mental and moral habits before he entered college, and be handicapped by them from the time he enters and forever afterwards, unless his college course changes them.

Handicaps before colleges.

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