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Comparing the total attendance for the first and for the last year of the semi-decen. nial period covered by the table, and excluding the statistics of the institutions that report for only one of these years, or have included students pursuing scientific studies for one year but not for the other, it appears that, for the North Atlantic division the decrease in attendance on classical courses has been 2.7 per cent. Computing, under the first limitation and for the same years, the attendance on scientific courses and departments of colleges and scientific institutions, it appears that the increase of attendance on scientific courses has been 48.8 per cent.
Turning now to inquire as to the ratio of the attendance on classical courses to the combined reported attendance on classical and scientific courses, and excluding the statistics of institutions not reporting the scientific students separately, it appears that for the year 1881–82, 70.3 per cent of the students were receiving instruction in classical courses, and for 1885–86, 64.4 per cent
The greater completeness of the statistics from the Now England States permits the Office to present ratios for this section less approximate than the foregoing. Rejecting the inadequate statistics as already explained, the increase of attendance on classical departments for the semi-decade has been 5.5 per cent., and on scientific courses and institutions 58.2 per cent. Of the combined attendance on classical and scientific courses and scientific institutions, 79 per cent. were receiving instruction in classical courses in 1881–82 and 70.9 per cent. in 1885–86.
The high rate of increase of attendance in scientific courses has mostly been conn tributed to by the growth of the attendance at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and by that at the Sheffield Scientific School. Outside of New England thscientific departments of Lehigh University and the Towne Scientific School of the University of Pennsylvania have also greatly increased their attendance, while the School of Mines of Columbia College has maintained quite evenly the large attende ance that it had in 1881–82.
EXTRACTS FROM REPORTS OF COLLEGE PRESIDENTS. The reports of college presidents and other officials for the current year present, as usual, discussions of the chief questions of interest respecting studies and discipline.
Their practical familiarity with the subject gives to their views and opinions greater value than attaches to any other utterances upon the subject. The following extracts from several of these reports relate to questions of wide interest at the pregent time:
ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS. Report of Dr. O. W. Eliot, President of Harvard University, for 1885-'86, pp. 7-9. The three-years discussion of the requirements for admission to Harvard College was brought to a fortimate conclusion in May last by the adoption, in the Corporation and Board of Overseers, after a thorough examination of the subject by committees, of the compromise measure which had been recommended to them almost unanimously by the college faculty in March, 1885. The practical results of the measure adopted may be summarized as follows: .
In the first place, from the point of view of the candidate, three ways are open: (1) The former method of entering the college remains practically unaltered so far as the selection of the candidate's studies is concerned. (2) A candidate who has mastered the elements of both Latin (translation at sight of simple prose) and Greek (translation at sight of simple Attic prose) is given a wide range of choice for his advanced studies at school. He may devote himself thereafter chiefly to the classics, or to French and German, or to mathematics, or to physical science, or he may make combinations of the four principal subjects in various proportions. (3) A candidate may substitute inathematics or mathematics and physical science for all the Greek.
Secondly, from the point of view of secondary schools, the measure also permits three varieties of school policy: (1) The present programme in the prevailing kind of classical school need not be modified except in what may be fairly called details. (2) A school programme which retains the elements only of Greek may develop moderu languages, physical science, or mathematics much more effectively than was possible under the former requirements, because advanced study in any one of these directions will count towards admission to Harvard College. (3) A preparatory school may teach thoroughly English, French, or Gerinan, mathematics, chemistry, and physics, with the elements of Latin and of the history of England and of the United States, and therewith secure the admission of its pupils at Harvard College on a level with any other candidates.
The most considerable immediate effects of the changes made in the requirements will probably fall under the second of these three heads, the most important ultimate results under the third. Under the second provision schools which now prepare boys for college can gradually bring their programmes into better harmony with modern needs; but under the third a new kind of school-a kind into which the public high school may advantageously be developed-can fit boys for college, to the commons
sider the expediency of extending the method, with some modifications, to the freshluan class. A committee of fourteep or fifteen members could divide the freshman class among themselves, each member supervising the plans and the work of about twenty students, the great majority of whom would need very little attention from him.
Report of Dr. F. d. P. Barnard, President of Columbia College, for 1885–'86, pp. 19, 20. To the undersigned it would seem to be preferable to abolish graded scales altogether and to make public no other scholastic distinctions than proficient and deficient. This need not prevent the aflixing a numerical valuation to the performances of each student in each particular study, in a record kept for the consultation of the faculty, in case any question should arise affecting such student individually. This is the plan which las been followed in the School of Mines ever since it was opened, more than twenty years ago, with results entirely satisfactory. It was not imposed by authority, but grew up uaturally as the simplest test for the accomplishment of the object for which the school was instituted, viz, to make well-qualified engineers. If we should, in like manner, in the school of arts, limit our endeavors to the effort to make well-educated young men and cease to trouble ourselves with questions of their relative merit, then there can be no doubt that the results would be equally satisfactory. An incidental advantage, moreover, would be derived from the change, viz, that we shonld hear no more of the frauds in examination, concerning wbich recently 80 much has been said, and concerning which statements have been published of absurd and disgraceful exaggeration.
There is no doubt that there is a great deal of effort made in all colleges to deceive examiners by the use of fraudulent devices in the filling out of examination papers ; but any sensible man who will study the nature of the problem will easily perceive that success to any important degree in such an undertakiug is a moral impossibility; and even though it should be strictly true, as has been confidently asserted, that such attempts are made by three out of four, or, as others say, nine out of ten, of the entire body of the students, this fact is only evidence of the general prevalence of a hope and not by any means a proof of an accomplished result. But it is further evidence of a sad degree of demoralization, among young men pursuing together a course of liberal education, which it is desirable to eradicate at any cost.
CONDUCT OF STUDIES. Report of E. 8. Holden, A. M., President of the University of California, for 1886, p. 19. A committee of the faculties at Berkeley has been in session twice weekly during the past 6 months, with the object of recommending for the adoption of the various faculties some changes in the present scheme of lectures and tuition. These will be submitted at the proper time to the faculties, and, if approved by them, will be rocommended to the Board of Regents. I, however, consider these changes to be so important that I desire to introduce here a schemo exhibiting their general nature, although the faculties may make important alterations. This scheme, together with the principles which have guided the committee in its action, are given below.
In proposing the following scheme of studies for the various courses for the consideration of the faculties, the committee endeavored to work to the following principles:
1. The formation of a justly-balanced whole in the curriculurn of each course is the vital matter. The total time assigned to each department should be determined by its relative importance in such a whole.
2. The claims of the various departments to the time of the student are estimated by means of the number of hours per week laid down in the curriculum.
3. The plan of 3-hour courses has been adopted as the one which adjusts itself best to the time schedule of recitations and lectures.
4. Tbe particular way in which the time so assigned is to be used is, in general, left to the heads of the departments.
5. For each hour per week laid down in the curricnlum the officer of instruction may require 2 honrs of preparation from the student, but no more.
6. But the hours laid down for work in the laboratories and for field practice do not imply any time for preparation.
7. It is regarded as essential that physics shall be prescribed and that it shall be studied as early as possible, both in the form of lecture-room exercises and with ex. perimental work by the students themselves.
Report of the President of Columbia College for 1885-'86, pp. 33, 34. The conclusion is justified, on all grounds on which the question can be placed, that after the age of about 19 years it is the most judicious educational policy to adapt the studies of the individual to his clearly-ascertained mental characteristics. This may be done either by prescribing to hiin such a course of stndy as his instructors may judge, as the result of observation, to be best adapted to his capacities, and therefore most likely to be profitable to him, and requiring him to pursuo it, or
While resident among us as fellows, or as fellows by courtesy (an honorary distinction without emolument), these honormen have been regarded as leaders among the students. They have been recognized as holding an intermediate position between the faculty and the great body of pupils; they have been efficient meinbers of the various literary and scientific associations; they bave occasionally given lectures on special topics to which they were devoted. The principal features in the method of appointment here adopted have been followed in other institutions both in this country and in Great Britain.
SCHOLARSHIP SYSTEM AT JOHNS HOPKINS.
Report of President Gilman for 1885–'86, pp. 16, 17. The founder of the university in his will made use of this language : " I further request the trustees of said university to establish, from time to time, such number of free scholarships in said university as may be judicions, and to distribute the said scholarships among such candidates from the States of Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina as may be most deserving of choice because of their character and intellectual promise, and to educate the young men so chosen free of charge." The best method of carrying out his wishes has been a matter upon which some difference of opinion has prevailed, and different modes of appointment have from time to time been adopted by the trustees. Our records show that 235 students from the three States named have received free tuition during a part or the whole of their course of study among us. One hundred and fifty of these were appointed Hopkins scholars.
As experience was gained in the bestowal of these scholarships, it was generally admitted that they ought to be awarded not as a charity to the needy but as an honor to the meritorious. Accordingly, during recent years, examinations have been held, and the scholarships have been given to those among the applicants who showed the highest attainments. All the Hopkins scholarships carry free tuition, and some of them designated as honorary have an additional stipend.
There is a third class of scholarships, 10 of which are open to the bachelors of arts of this university and 10 to graduates of this or of other institutions who may be engaged in the prosecution of their work among us. These appointments are likewise bestowed as honors.
No other prizes have been offered, and no formal announcements have been made of the comparative standing of the students. Records are kept by the several instructors and are reported at appointed times to the collective authorities. The results of his examinations are known to every student, and are annually communicated to the parents. But these checks are chiefly valuable as a warning to those who are in some way negligent and deficient. The students generally, undergraduates as wel as graduates, do not require the stimulus of comparative marks and competitive examinations. They are encouraged to study for the sake of the knowledge and power which they will acquire, and not for the sake of surpassing their comrades.
There has been a remarkable freedom from boyish manifestations of a mischievous spirit. The accessibility of the teachers and their abstinence from annoying and petty supervision, have doubtless contributed to a good understanding with their pupils. Other reasons for the prevalence of good order might be suggested, but whatover the cause, it is a pleasure to record the fact that during the first ten years of our academic history there has never been a breach of decorum requiring the action of the faculty.
NOTES FROM UNIVERSITY AND COLLEGE CATALOGUES. The following notes from the catalognes of universities, colleges, and scienco schools present particulars which do not admit of tabulation. The statistical record of these institutions will be found in Tables 39, 43, and 44:
ALABAMA. At the University of Alabama there are 2 general departments of instruction, the academic department and the department of professional education. In the former there are 10 and in the latter 3 schools. The schools of the academic department are so arranged as to form the classical, scientitic, and engineering courses, leading to the degrees of bachelor of arts, bachelor of science, and bachelor of engineering. The “ department of professional education” fits its students for the practice of law, and may be completed in 9 months by diligent study. The endowment of the university, which has been fixed at $300,000, and from which an annual income of $24,000 is received, was obtained by the sale of a township of land set apart for a seminary of learning when the State was admitted into the Union. Military discipline prevails.
At Howard College, Marion, special attention is paid to English composition and elocution.
The board of trustees of the Agricultural and Mechanical College, Auburn, passed a resolution in August, 1885, adding the words "Alabama Polytechnic Institute” to the