This research evaluates the support for eight liberal arts goals: thinking clearly; knowing the physical universe; cultural awareness; moral awareness; valuing thought; thought/feeling relationships; independent action; and tolerance and concern for others. (1) The survey of 1,014 consists of 541 graduates and 473 undergraduates of a small southern liberal arts university. A low response rate for graduates led to comparisons of returns to the original sample frame in terms of: year graduated, sex composition, and ratings by survey return date. (2) the GER scale consists of 8 subscales and 33 items. Each item is rated by importance and gains in college. Cronbach's Alpha for subscales ranged from .67 to .82 with an overall ∝ =.928. (3) Results. All goals were rated as Very Important to Extremely Important. GER goals were rated more important by undergraduates who were: women, leaders, community volunteers, and those with out‐of‐class experience. Tolerance and Concern for Others was the most important goal. Greatest gains were in thinking clearly. Support of the liberal arts program, defined as a combination of gains and importance, increased from freshman to senior class. Support was unexpectedly strong for more affective components of the program. Limitations of this research are used to suggest future areas of study.
Cover, J. (1996), "IS A LIBERAL ARTS EDUCATION STILL RELEVANT? SURVEY RESULTS FROM GRADUATES AND UNDERGRADUATES", International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, Vol. 16 No. 11, pp. 64-80. https://doi.org/10.1108/eb013280Download as .RIS
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