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Liberal Education

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Nikhil Watsa

on 28 December 2017

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Transcript of Liberal Education

Liberal Education
The Importance of Liberal Education in the 21st Century
Is a Liberal Arts degree and a Liberal Education the same thing?
Is Liberal Education as great as people make it seem?
What is Liberal Education?
Where is Liberal Education at Right Now? Where is it headed in the future?
Anders Asiala
Leah Pletcher
Matt Conflitti
Nikhil Watsa
Noah Verellen
Tyler Swenson
Are Arguments Against the Liberal Arts Reasonable?
What is liberal education's impact on history








YES!...but also no
Pure liberal education is what is great,
not the stuff that gives it a bad name
We are called by past philosophers
to strive to become philosopher
kings. Liberal education opens the
door and your mind to that mentality.
If it is so great, how can it benefit the average person?
Liberal education can teach you:
People skills
How to work on a team
How to understand another's view
Critical thinking skills
A whole new way of thinking
Does it pay to get it?
The decision doesn't have to come to a forked road.
A liberal education supplements every degree.
You don't have to be a die hard advocate of liberal education to reap the benefits.
Yes, college might be quicker without, but liberal education could be the difference between getting the job or a raise and not.
“In the past, it felt fine to just say, OK, we’re overall going to be generous with this [education] sector.”

“But in this era,” it is necessary to “to break down and really say, what are the categories that help fill jobs and drive the state economy in the future”
-Bill Gates (September 2011)
Less than
liberal education universities / over
universities and colleges in the US
of graduating students are liberally educated
Liberally educated workers earn about $2000 more than technically educated at peak earning ages (56-60)
Unemployment rates are relatively



There is an increasing awareness that liberal education is beneficial
Liberal arts majors catch up with their career-major peers a decade after graduation
Skills gained from liberal education become
more valuable over time
Critical thinking and communication skills
are stronger in liberally educated students

Victor Ferrall (author of Liberal Arts at the Brink, 2011) – “Since people change jobs five or six times throughout their career, a narrow technical focus will create workers who aren’t as
as those with broader educations”
Economist David Fiorenza – “focus on technical disciplines could make the economy less robust”

Norman B. Augustine – Previously President of Lockheed-Martin (aerospace engineering company)
ready for change
is more important to being secured in the first position
Fields that require the most employees today may not be the ones who need employees in the future
Liberal education is how one can prepare for that change and ensure that they will be successful in whatever environment they encounter
Where is Liberal Education at Now?
Where is Liberal Education Headed in the Future?
The number of liberal arts degrees is
This could indicate a first step in the decline of liberal education as a whole

Liberal education is facing several issues that make predictions about its future
Increasing cost
of residential education
Competition from
new programs
such as online programs or vocational schools
There is a
cultural trend
towards "securing financial stability rather than developing a meaningful philosophy of life"

The result is that liberal education universities are in a dilemma
Media, social, and economic trends push even liberal education universities to pursue a more
career-focused and research-focused
Increasingly we see recent graduates who have not had experience with arts, literature, history, and other areas of knowledge outside of their own field
Sometimes even if they attended a liberal university
This is why it is so great :
Based on an AACU survey, companies emphasize critical thinking and world views as most beneficial to the company over the actual degree. Companies say if employees have a strong liberal education they can teach them everything they need to know for the job.
To recap:
A liberal education is a necessary addition to every degree in order to be successful
Liberal education is great in its purest form set forth by the original philosophers such as Plato, Aristotle, and Socrates.
It allows you see everything from another perspective which helps you understand the topic more thoroughly.
Cicero was an advocate of liberal education. He said it our duty as human beings is to pursue knowledge because it one of the greatest pursuits one can aspire to.
base of history, theory and practice
creates well-rounded individuals
exposes students to multiple subject areas
develops critical thinking skills
Works Cited:
Baker, Vicki L., Roger G. Baldwin, and Sumedha Makker. "Where Are They Now? Revisiting Breneman's Study of Liberal Arts Colleges." Where Are They Now? Revisiting Breneman’s Study of Liberal Arts Colleges. Association of American Colleges & Universities, 2012. Web. 11 Nov. 2014. <http://www.aacu.org/publications-research/periodicals/where-are-they-now-revisiting-breneman%E2%80%99s-study-liberal-arts>.
Barlow, Rich. "Liberal Arts vs. Career Majors: What's an Education For? | BU Today | Boston University." Liberal Arts vs. Career Majors: What’s an Education For? BU Today, 07 Sept. 2011. Web. 10 Nov. 2014. <http://www.bu.edu/today/2011/liberal-arts-vs-career-majors-what%E2%80%99s-an-education-for/>.
"Jilting Liberal Arts Can Hurt the US, to a Degree." Business + Economy. The Fiscal Times, 9 Jan. 2013. Web. 11 Nov. 2014. <http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Articles/2013/01/09/Jilting-Liberal-Arts-Can-Hurt-the-US-to-a-Degree>.
"New Report Documents That Liberal Arts Disciplines Prepare Graduates for Long-Term Professional Success." Association of American Colleges & Universities, 22 Jan. 2014. Web. 11 Nov. 2014. <http://www.aacu.org/press/press-releases/new-report-documents-liberal-arts-disciplines-prepare-graduates-long-term>.
"What Is Liberal Education? « Liberal.education Nation." What Is Liberal Education. Association of American Colleges and Universities, n.d. Web. 11 Nov. 2014. <http://blog.aacu.org/?page_id=22>

The Arguments
-STEM students don't need it
-Philosophy does not promote growth
Importance of
in society
in culture
for students
and in the world

Fall of Liberal Education
Influence on Founding Fathers
Present Day
One may Argue that only STEM majors need a college degree
Yes, these arguments are reasonable, but are irrational
Liberal Arts Degree
Liberal Education
Put simply, a liberal arts degree is a degree in Humanities, Social Sciences, or Creative Arts
Refers to matters not related to professional, vocational, or technical curriculum
Doesn’t intend on training you to perform a specific job, rather it prepares you by giving you invaluable skills that can be applied at many jobs
Studies are broad and diverse rather than narrow and specialized
Courses taken are in general fields of study within many disciplines
Both require a general education classes to be taken
Both are broad at first but eventually become more specialized
The goal of both is to make you well-rounded and prepared for anything
Both make you learn how learn
The ultimate goal of both is provide a broader spectrum of knowledge and skills that are applicable in many careers
Liberal education classes usually lasts for the first two years, a liberal arts degree has you taking them until you graduate
You can major in anything and still be liberally educated, but a liberal arts degree is limited to only a few fields of majors
The concentration within a subject is much greater for a liberal education
Focuses on one major while also requiring certain general education classes to be taken to make your education well rounded
Teaches skills that can be taken to any job such as communication and problem solving skills
Learning about many different subjects allows you to be able to communicate across many fields
Prepares mainly for one specific field while educating you in such a way that there is flexibility for you to be able succeed in a variety of careers
Full transcript