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  • Jim Buch <jbuch@revealed.net>
    At Cal Tech, there is some grumbling from the students about having to Waste Time with non-technical classes. The greatest grumbling and opposition comes
    Message 1 of 3 , Mar 2 11:11 AM
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      At Cal Tech, there is some grumbling from the students about having to
      "Waste Time" with non-technical classes.

      The greatest grumbling and opposition comes from the male students.

      The female engineering students are reported as far more supportive of
      the educational diversity requirements.

      The percentage of non-technical classes required by Cal Tech is a few
      percentage points smaller than MIT.

      In 1958, my non-technical class graduation requirements were
      approximately 20% of the credit hours had to be something besides
      Engineering, Science or Mathematics.

      I would be interested in the modern requirements for diversity of
      education requirements in contemporary Universities.

      I would additionally be interested in BOTH the diversity in education
      requirements of Ch. Ch. Oxford and elsewhere in the time of Carroll.

      To what extent could one get "A Degree of Culture" and still be
      narrowly educated in those times?

      Jim Buch
    • Mark Israel <MarkIsrael@aol.com>
      Jim, if you were a young Victorian gentleman (and not training for a particular profession, such as med cine or law), you would go up to Oxford or Cambridge
      Message 2 of 3 , Mar 2 5:47 PM
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        Jim, if you were a young Victorian gentleman (and not training for a
        particular profession, such as med'cine or law), you would go up to
        Oxford or Cambridge for three years, to "read" (i.e., "major in")
        either Classics or Maths (gosh, that's hard to say) -- or, if you
        were *really* keen, Classics *and* Maths. You would not take any
        exams that counted until the end of your third year, when, based on
        a series of written and oral exams, you would be awarded First-Class
        Honours, Second-Class Honours, Third-Class Honours, a pass degree,
        or a failure. You certainly took no classes unrelated to the
        subject you were "reading".

        When I left England in 1979, things hadn't changed much. Not only
        were university students focused completely on their subjects
        (physics students would take maths courses, but certainly no arts
        courses); but the last two years of "senior school" (i.e., "high
        school") you would spend in the "Sixth Form", taking your "'A'-
        levels", typically in 3 subjects -- subjects related to what you
        hoped to "read" at university. A very, very large contrast from the
        American diversity requirements.
      • Jim Buch <jbuch@revealed.net>
        ... So, it appears that instead of blunt headed American Engineers, the British graduate relatively Pointy Heads in almost all fields. That may explain why
        Message 3 of 3 , Mar 2 6:04 PM
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          --- In lewiscarroll@yahoogroups.com, "Mark Israel <MarkIsrael@a...>"
          <MarkIsrael@a...> wrote:
          > Jim, if you were a young Victorian gentleman (and not training for a
          > particular profession, such as med'cine or law), you would go up to
          > Oxford or Cambridge for three years, to "read" (i.e., "major in")
          > either Classics or Maths (gosh, that's hard to say) -- or, if you
          > were *really* keen, Classics *and* Maths. You would not take any
          > exams that counted until the end of your third year, when, based on
          > a series of written and oral exams, you would be awarded First-Class
          > Honours, Second-Class Honours, Third-Class Honours, a pass degree,
          > or a failure. You certainly took no classes unrelated to the
          > subject you were "reading".
          >
          > When I left England in 1979, things hadn't changed much. Not only
          > were university students focused completely on their subjects
          > (physics students would take maths courses, but certainly no arts
          > courses); but the last two years of "senior school" (i.e., "high
          > school") you would spend in the "Sixth Form", taking your "'A'-
          > levels", typically in 3 subjects -- subjects related to what you
          > hoped to "read" at university. A very, very large contrast from the
          > American diversity requirements.


          So, it appears that instead of "blunt headed" American Engineers, the
          British graduate relatively "Pointy Heads" in almost all fields.




          That may explain why British (and some American) biographers treat
          mathematics as one homogeneous ugly incomprehensible mess with little
          differentiation between "pure" and "applied" or "Antiquated" and
          "modern".

          (arithmatic 4000 or more years old,
          geometry over 2,200 years old,
          algebra - thanks to the arabs - mostly over 1,000 years old,
          trigonometry over 500 years old,
          calculus almost 400 years old,
          and then over 50 more mathematics specializations in the last 300
          years).

          The chances of getting a widespread appreciation of Carroll and his
          role in and feelings to mathematics appear slim and none.

          However, it is clear from the number of scientific and mathematics
          authors quoting the works, there is genuine admiration of the
          literary work of the man Dodgson.


          Jim Buch
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