Medical imaging Carillon Tower Glass blowing Laptop and lecture A smiling student Sunrise over the Education Building Chairs on the Memorial Union Terrace Bascom hall staircase Graduating students in silhouette Crowd of people on Bascom Hill A student tutoring Student with diploma Dance Department performance Night view of Bascom in the winter Memorial Union Terrace in autumn Memorial Union Terrace chairs Dance department performance Bucky Badger in front of a parade float Bascom Hall in the summertime Lincoln statue Students walking in the snow University of Wisconsin - Madison Crest Lincoln statue in the snow Forward Logo Student at graduation Bicycle in the snow Rathskellar Fireplace Sailboat with Capitol Building in the background A sailboat at the Memorial Union Bascom Hill in Autumn Bucky Badger studying with a student. Students among blooming trees at UW-Madison Bucky reading a book University flag on Bascom Hill Video camera view screen Student on a frozen lake Lincoln Statue on Bascom Hill Bascom Hill in winter Students collaborating Memorial Union Terrace chairs in the snow Kohl Center logo Graduates with diplomas A hands-on project Stacked, illuminated figures View from the top of Van Hise


Main Office

Department of Rehabilitation Psychology & Special Education
School of Education
Education Building
1000 Bascom Mall, Rm. 431
MadisonWI  53706

Tel: 608/263.5970
Fax: 608/263.5970

or by contact form

RPSE Events

Rags to Riches: How the American College Went from Pitiful in the 19th Century to Powerful in the 20th

Join David F. Labaree of Stanford University as he discusses the evolution of the American system of higher education.
Friday, September 01, 2017
1 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.
220 Teacher Education Building

From the perspective of 19th century visitors to the US, the American system of higher education was a joke. Underfunded, underwhelming in its dedication to learning, dispersed to the hinterlands, and lacking a compelling social function, the system seemed destined for deserved obscurity. But by the second half of the 20th century, the system had assumed a dominant position in the world market in higher education. The question is how this happened. The answer is that the characteristics of the system that seemed liabilities in the 19th century became assets in the 20th century. Its modest public funding, dependence on the student and the market, and independence from church and state gave it a degree of autonomy that allowed the system to dominate the world.

Presented by David F. Labaree, Stanford University

Sponsored by the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and the School of Education

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