Which Core Matters More?

Differences in definitions of quality lead to new debates over the importance of teaching practical skills versus specific knowledge

Fabrizio Costantini for The Chronicle

Mark Higbee, a history professor at Eastern Michigan U., uses a teaching method called Reacting to the Past, in which students, in effect, enter into the era at hand. "If a professor stands at the front of the classroom and talks about Plato," he says, "it doesn't mean the students are learning Plato."
September 25, 2011 Premium content for subscribers. Subscribe Today

Potential students hoping to gauge the quality of courses at Portland State University might be forgiven for feeling a bit confused.

On the one hand, the University Studies program, which uses interdisciplinary seminars during the first two years to...

This content is available exclusively to Chronicle subscribers