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Capitalism and the Industrialization of Higher Education

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A Hartford Connecticut elementary school, which non-fiction writer and educator Jonathan Kozol described, had adapted a curriculum, requiring educators to closely supervise students. The curriculum imposed on the students was based on mission statements concentrating on principles that were intended “to develop productive citizens” and allow“for successful global competition” (Kozol 212). Teachers at this school were told to instruct students with hand signals in their classrooms, using such visual cues to move things along whenever they felt it was necessary. A women who was against this regimen claimed “ [she] can do this with [her] dog” (Kozol 212). Since compulsory education makes the foundation of students who might receive higher education, the curriculum will definitely affect the quality of student work in higher education. Capitalism creates a highly competitive society which leads higher education to be “efficient” and produces passive learners who simply adjust to the world as it is.
Some believe capitalism distorts higher education’s basis: “learning for its own sake.” This idea of learning as an end to itself originated in medieval Europe and manifested itself in the relationship between masters and pupils during that time. Universities did not have many actual buildings. Rather the university foundations was more about academic spaces and relationships, and they were formed voluntary. These institutions were independent from any authorities; only people’s genuine desire for learning ran universities in the past. Students did not simply digest knowledge towards a singular economic end unlike some students today, but instead they gained experience in critical thinking from their mentor. Spontaneity, and ‘lea...

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... at a Public Research University:
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