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View Diary: Case for a Liberal Arts Education (140 comments)

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  •  Two comments: (0+ / 0-)

    First, it doesn't make sense to talk about the cost of teaching "liberal arts."  

    You don't teach liberal arts, you teach humanities, or sciences, or whatnot.  "Liberal arts" means that a student takes a lot of courses from many different subjects.  

    Second, teaching any subject properly requires small class sizes.  Universities attempt to maintain a low student-to-faculty ratio across all departments; they don't just need it for discussion-oriented humanities courses.

    My head says "No" but my heart says "Yes". And then my liver says "What?" and my butt's all like "Farrrrrrt" --jbou

    by Caj on Fri Oct 26, 2012 at 07:06:07 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  when you're talking (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Killer of Sacred Cows

      about a liberal arts college, as some of us have been, then you are talking about the cost of delivering instruction from class to class, subject to subject.

      Large universities sometimes (often, for intro level courses) have giant lectures for undergrads, with discussion sections led by cheap grad student T.A.s. So the school pays one career-level salary (unless they use adjuncts), and several minimum wage salaries for the T.A.s.

      Elite liberal arts colleges use qualified faculty to teach classes of 15 - 20 students across the curriculum. It's more expensive to organize things that way.

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