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. 1, No. 1 (Jan., 1930), pp. 5-12 Published by: Ohio State University Press Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1974835 . Accessed: 13/07/2011 16:40
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with which it began. with adequate compensation. without interference. He did not so quickly secure the buildings and equipment that would have saved hours of toil and inconvenience. At Chicago he came into his own in the opportunities he received to prosecute his investigations in his own way. s I think. on work with and for Chicago. giving new life to scientific investigation throughout the country. geographical and financial. by emphasis on men before everything else. From the moment of its founding it took its place among the notable institutions of the earth. These four characteristicswill. and bringing the research worker for the moment into his own. The University. it has made the most of what God and man have given it. Its present position it owes even more to the devotion and ability of its faculty than it does to the advantages.17 Journa1*of* Higher JANUARY. That spirit has been characterized by emphasis on productive scholarship. and on an experimental attitude. who have set their mark upon the University. Resisting all suggestions that the sole obligation of education was the training of youth. so that whatever changes in organization may come. took the view that men were the first con- . its spirit will be the same. stimulating support and encouragement to scholars everywhere. 1930 | durationn** The Spirit of the University of Chicago By ROBERT MAYNARD HUTCHINS In His Inaugural Address the New President Characterizes the University's Past and Outlines Its Future Ns Do mancancometo the presi- dency of the University of Chicago without being awed by the University and its past. and with the sympathy of the administration. administration and faculty. The guaranty of its future is the devotion and ability of these men and women. be the insignia of the University's spirit to the end. striving to attain the ideals established at the beginning and coming closer to its goal each year. Thus the University established itself in a decade as a significant and distinctively American achievement. he selected his faculty for its eminence or promise in research. Through four administrations it has held its course. At a time when most educators were chiefly concerned with undergraduate teaching President Harper assembled in the Middle West a community of scholars. Favored at the outset by unprecedented generosity and a strategic location.
Through affiliation with some cases the experience at Chicago sideration. Although this contribution was perhaps not epoch-making. But before one of them had arisen the University had made one of the great advances in the history of American education: it had established a maximum professorial salary more than double that prevailing in the United States.ber of teachers it has distributed up tion that all men are entitled to what. Where one has succeeded the faculty has been gratified and sometimes surprised. In education it is too often forgotten that the essence of experimentation is that final decision is reserved until the experiment is complete. This action demonstrated the University's emphasis on men first of all. During long periods of necessary retrenchment their spirit has kept men here. That attitude in this and all other particulars was experimental. it was natural that the true experimental attitude should flower. In co-operation experiment after experiment has gone forward. They have transmitted their spirit to their successors. it illustrated the University's attitude toward its environment. To them they brought a consciousness Partly because of its geographical pothat the University wished to be their sition and partly because of the numuniversity. taking new ventures. No one has been so convinced that his work was important as to refuse the co-operation of others. and it shocked the friends of other universities into helping them to provide their faculties with reasonable incomes.sity's value to the Middle West has tempted to affect the life of the peo. it announced to the public that professors might be worth more than a bare living wage. Policies adopted as experiments have a tendency to change into vested rights.been in trying out ideas. in underple.and down the country. When. At the University of Chicago. The Univerextension and home study they at. Where one has failed they have promptly tried something else. where the principal tradition has been that of freedom. They enabled the scholar of that day to take his place in society with confidence and self-respect. These salaries were not only higher than any then paid in education. for example. These quadrangles are the justification of that faith. the University assisted in the improvement of education at all levels. No one has been so sure that his work was perfect as to decline suggestions as to its improvement. its pioneering ever education they can effectively has been remarkably influential. but they were also comparable to those paid in business and the professions. The presence of that group has drawn other men to it. Through to American education. dedicated to the proposi. in pioneering. In utilize. FROM the beginning they hoped It is in this fashion that the Univerto make their work count beyond sity of Chicago has been most useful the bordersof the University. . and that facilities for them must sooner or later appear.6 JOURNAL OF HIGHER EDUCATION schools and colleges in the surrounding territory. The group that came together here under these conditions has been the glory of the University for thirty-seven years. it was abandoned. the program of affiliation lost its usefulness. particularly in and about Chicago.
representing the social-science departments. Students of business are study- ing it as it works instead of speculating about it. Naturally enough. and is as important today as it was in i89i. The Department of Hygiene and Bacteriology works in co-operation with the city health office. is the chief function of the University of Chicago. It is true that the unfortunate circumstance that universities were founded by people who could read and were proud of it has tended to emphasize the importance of that exercise and to make the library the great center of scientific inquiry. particularly in the field with which I am most familiar. IN this movementthe University of Chicago has played an important part and must continue to do so. that of social problems. Students of government are studying the people who do the governing and those they govern. That. In considering the performance of that function today we think first of the work in which the University has been most eminent. the focus of research at this university should be primarily that part of the world about us called Chicago and the Chicago area. scholars have for generations thought that their only material was the reported opinions of courts of last resort. Students of the law of family relations who could not regulate their own would often reach conclusions as to the proper rules governing those of other people from an analysis of decisions handed down by judges whose domestic situation frequently left much to be desired. for instance. he could not observe that he often went into it. If the focus of research is the world about us. Research so focused is bringing up to date and giving a somewhat new accent to the University's traditional interest in its environment. is directing fifty studies of the community. Today students of social problems have learned from students of the natural sciences that only by keeping in touch with reality can real life be understood. The School of Commerce and Administration is carrying on research in fifteen or twenty local industries. it is going far toward bringing scholarship in touch with life as it is being lived today. In the law. and it may eventually lead to some slight advance in the life that is to be lived here tomorrow. is its remoteness from reality. The Local Community Research Committee. that of research. The School of Social Service Administration has revolutionized the treatment of the orphan in the city of Chicago. in more it has opened new roads to better education and set new standards for the West. and legal scholars are examining the actual operation and results of the legal system instead of confining themselves to the history of phrases coined by judges and legislators long since dead. Here we find that one thing that has bothered the layman about research. He has assumed that the scholar was trying to understand the world about him. Through the co-operation of the superintendent of schools of Chicago.THE SPIRIT OF A UNIVERSITY 7 has shown other universities what not to do. the Department of Education is working with teachers from three hundred public schools and is conducting studies in seven of them. its work has been centered on this city and its surroundings. . I venture to think.
from art to zoology. We are studying and proposing to study problems that do not fit readily into the traditional departmental pattern of a university. without in any way coercing the lone research worker into co-operation. We have therefore many advantages.not the least of which is the temper of the faculty as revealed in the admirable co-operative work now under way. so much has our attitude changed since departmental lines were laid down that a much narrower phenomenon. The divinity schools are so disturbedthat they are having a survey of themselves conducted. The rounded study of such a question as the family.The medicalschools have been in ferment for almost twenty years. in which all these departmentsare interested. N such developments the place of the professional schools is important. we shall doubtless secure a splendid series of individuals. We shall shortly make important appointments in economics.the obligationto experimentwith methods of educating first-rate professional men. The law schools for half a century have been subjected to the bitter criticismof the bar and of one another. with the Medical School on the south side in the Ogden Graduate School of Scienceand the Department of Educationin the GraduateSchool of Arts and Literature. The schools of education are only now succeeding in making their own universitiesaccept them as educationalexperts. If they can be made with reference to university projects in the study of human problems. avoids some difficulties confrontedelsewhere. and the graduate library school. They have a dual obligation. At the present moment there is nothing educational upon which there is less unanimitythan the methods of professional training. and the obligationto participate with the rest of the University in research. psychiatry. the necessity of co-operation within the University becomes increasingly clear. law.8 JOURNAL OF HIGHER EDUCATION With research so focused. is that we must regard the University as a whole. We should make the most of them by careful and continuedattentionto the possibilitiesof extending this type of effort into other fields. What is clear. What is clear is that we must proceed to give opportunities for co-operation to those who have felt the need of them. Indeed. would require a scarcely less representative attack. like radio-activity. from divinity to medicine. The schools of business are in grave doubt as to . What co-operative research will mean to the organization of this University is not yet clear. pediatrics. If those appointments are made with reference only to the specific needs of the specific departments. and consider the formulation of university programs rather than departmental or school policies. To such common enterprises the architectural plan of the University is admirablyadapted. too. Much has been accomplished here by informal committees like that on local community research. education. home economics. other universities have established formal institutes with the same aim. for instance. we shall have a splendid group each member of which will contributehis special abilities to the common enterprise. Its organization. would involve here the cooperation of eleven departments. and of seven professional schools.
But assumingthat this is settled and assumingthat a student who plans to be a teacher has been given a sufficient chanceat researchto determine his interest in it. degree who would not now be enrolled. terminating in the preparation of a so-called original contribution to knowledge. Yet the training for the doctorate in this country is almost uniformly training in the acquisition of a research technique. literature. It means. Rather he should learn about them through seeing experimentscarried on in undergraduatework by the membersof the departmentin which he is studying with the adviceof the Department of Education. in large part professional schools. Under these circumstances the University of Chicago again has a dual obligation: to devise the best methods of preparing men for research and creative scholarship and to devise the best methods of preparing men for teaching. This means. Their productivity ends with the dissertation. of course. or whether the teaching schedules in most colleges give those powers no scope. Since the present work of graduate students is arranged in the hope that they will become investigators. that he must be in touch with the most recent and most successfulmovementsin undergraduate education.D. Whether the rigors of this process exhaust the student's creative powers. In fact. and science are. involving more independence and fewer courses. the selection of students in the graduate schools on some better basis than graduationfrom college seems to me one of the next mattersthe University must discuss. should lJftjOW he learnaboutthese . But it is a responsibility which I am sure they will accept in view of the history and position of the University of Chicago. No one should be allowed to be a candidate for the Ph. in my opinion. The graduate schools of arts. his training should fit him as well as may be for his profession. that he must know his field and its relation to the whole body of knowledge. movements? Not. little modification in it is necessary to train those who plan to become investigators. But the main problem is a curriculumfor the future teacher. too. which will shortly secure funds to study collegiate education. of course. In the course of time it will doubtless become less rigid and more comprehensive. Sucha system places a new responsibilityupon the departments-that of developing ideas in college education.THE SPIRIT OF A UNIVERSITY 9 the effectiveness of their educational scheme. of which he now officiallylearns little or nothing. Upon the problems of undergraduate teaching his creative work should be done. In such a situation it is obvious that one function of the professional schools at the University of Chicago is to experiment with methods of instruction which shall in all these fields contribute to the establishment of standards of professional training. or whether most teachers are without them is uncertain. What is certain is that most doctors of philosophy become teachers and not productive scholars. by doing practiceteaching upon the helpless undergraduate. No lowering of requirementsshould be permitted. They are producing teachers. A minority of their students become research workers.
Nor did the argument that we should contribute good citizens to the Middle West make much impression on distinguished scholars anxious to get ahead with their own researches. But we do not propose to abandon or dismember the colleges. But however opinions may differ on details. Nor does this apply to the senior college alone. it cannot retreat from the field of undergraduate work. to try to illuminate dark and dubious fields. and to the senior college. or at least from the first two years of it. therefore. At times. that different degrees will doubtless have to be given to research workers. They were glad to have somebody make this contribution but saw little reason why they should be elected for the task. The emphasis on productive scholarship that has characterized the University from the beginning and must characterize it to the end has naturally led to repeated question as to the place and future of our colleges. This determination is not for sentimental or financial reasons. on the other. which has remained uncertain through the years. too. and the retarding effect of his less able or less interested contemporaries. the Ph. the deans of the colleges. If the departments are to experiment with the education of teachers. Certain subjects apart. and the chairman of the Department of Education. degree remaining what it chiefly is today. they must work out their ideas in the colleges here. there is no reason why he should not be given what he wants. They could not be regarded as training grounds for the graduate schools. so dark and dubious today. is one of the most baffling that is before us. Almost every student is interested in some thing. there is no . for the whole question of the relation of the first two years of college to the high school. Instead of withdrawing from this field we should vigorously carry forward experiments in it. Furthermore.10 JOURNAL OF HIGHER EDUCATION Such a system means. as are the deans of the graduate schools. that some program recognizing the dual objectives of graduate studythe education of teachers and the education of research men-must be tried at the University of Chicago. with which he wishes to cultivate a mere speaking acquaintance. If the University's function is to attempt solutions of difficult educational problems. In the colleges of the country students are of two types in respect to any given subject: those who wish to specialize in it and those who wish to know what it is about. information and stimulation-and the more important of these is stimulation. the routine of the classroom. It does not follow that because a student takes one attitude toward one field he must take the same attitude toward all. I am convinced. retreat would make impossible the development in graduate study that I have just described. members of the faculty have urged that we withdraw from undergraduate work." free from restrictions. In that he should carry on a large amount of work "on his own. on the one hand. for less than twenty per cent of their students went on in graduate work here.D. S would help OME such program J to clarify the function of the undergraduate colleges in this University. a degree for college teachers. In other areas of knowledge.
ooo in cash or pledges since 19I9. Obviously it places our colleges definitely in the scheme of things at this University. B UT experiments educationprein suppose men to carry them out. in the hope of devising the best methods of dealing with both types of students. It will never be settled until . it can derive little satisfaction from the thought that its salaries are as low as those of neighboring institutions. Comparisons of salaries among universities are irrelevant and harmful. It cannot be too often repeated that it is men and nothing but men that make education. The University has received $53. Can we now get the kind of men we want to go into education? Since no university can answer this question in the affirmative. It will never be settled until America is willing to pay enough to induce its best brains to go into the education of its offspring and stay there. On this basis the plan might meet the needs of the American undergraduate. irrespective of the ability of teacher or students.000. and the rewards in business and the professions have mounted to heights never before dreamed of. which is more important than the professorial average.ooo of this sum was free to be used for general salary purposes. Their interests will doubtless be best served by providing classes with the most inspiring lecturers that can be found and letting the size of the group take care of itself. moreover. all the evidence is the other way. In fact. Since the time when that faculty gathered. tremendous gifts have been made for special projects. It is hopeless to try to combat that feeling. The increase in student numbers. The expression of satisfaction.ooo. The theory that the smaller the class the better the result.000 in thirty-seven years. has inevitably led to the expansion of the faculty. he might transfer to "honors" in it. this would still have been a great university. has increased $3. coupled with the desire to deal with them in small classes. Any such scheme of pass-and-honors work should be kept so flexible that if a student should by chance be stimulated to a maj or interest in a subject. The question is. finds no support in experience in dealing with classes where the chief aim is inspiration. As a result the professorial maximum. does positive damage in leading the public to think that this matter has been settled. Gifts representing the special interests of the donors have required additional appointments. student numbers have swollen to an unprecedented extent. But only $7. What we must do is to meet it by paying salaries in education that will attract the best men in competition with business and the professions. Meanwhile more and more of our best college graduates have been dissuaded from a scholarly career by the characteristic American feeling that there must be some connection between compensation and ability.THE SPIRIT OF A UNIVERSITY 11 evidence that this cannot best be done through large lecture courses. in spite of the noble efforts of my predecessors to carry on the University's traditional preference for giving firstrate rewards to first-rate men. If the first faculty of the University of Chicago had met in a tent. for the program calls for experiments by each department with "pass') and "honors" work in its own field.
It is simply what was done here in I 89 I. . So may we make the future worthy of the past. The only method by which we shall approach our goal is by paying salaries that will enable the universities to compete with the business world for the best men. g 0 . we must perhaps ask the students in some schools to make a larger contribution toward the cost of their education. or by the feeling that the profession is a refuge for mediocrity.12 JOURNAL OF HIGHER EDUCATION professorial salaries are such as to make scholarship respected in the United States. Nor shall we come much closer to it as long as our people feel that the scholar receives a substantial share of his compensation in the permanence of his tenure. and the aspirations of the men and women who have labored here to build the greatness of this University.I91 /-. making sure that we are spending them on first-rate men for first-rate work. I do not mean that salaries in education must be identical with those in business. Nor do I want men to go into education to make money.I T k(VA . This policy I believe the Board of Trustees will put into effect as rapidly as its funds permit. But. It is a policy about which there is nothing revolutionary. on the other hand. In this way. the confidence of the community. So may we continue to pioneer and set new standards for the West. I CD- . To carry it out we must husband our existing resources. Nor will it be attained if they must live in conditions that scarcely provide them with the decencies of life.L. This object will not be attained as long as professors must carry on outside work or teach every summer to keep alive. So may we justify the faith of the Founder. we may give strength to its other traditions of experiment and productive scholarship. centered upon the problems of our city.. perhaps. and we must focus the attention of the public upon the fact that only through general funds for salaries can a university hope to retain its outstanding men and bring in others to join them.. too. no man should be kept out of education by the certainty that he will have to live in fear of his creditors all his days. In this way we may carry on the greatest tradition of the University of Chicago. 0I'D I.
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