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UBC Reports Feb 12, 1970

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Editor, UBC Reports
For the first time in the University of B.C.'s
history a decision has been made to restrict the
number of students who will be able to attend the
Point Grey campus.
UBC's Senate held a special meeting Feb. 7 to
come to grips with the recommendations in the
report of its Committee on Lorg-Range Objectives
and decided by substantial majorities:
— To limit the total undergraduate enrolment on
the present campus to a maximum of 22,000
students, and
— To limit the annual rate of increase of total
enrolment in graduate studies to 15 per cent and set a
ceiling of 5,500 graduate students.
UBC's present enrolment is 20,767, made up of
2,687 graduate students and 18,080 undergraduates, a
percentage split of approximately 13 per cent
graduate students and 87 per cent undergraduates.
When UBC's enrolment finally reaches the new
ceiling of 27,500 students, the percentage mix will be
20 per cent graduate students and 80 per cent
UBC's academic planner. Dr. Robert M. Clark, told
Senate the 22,000 ceiling for undergraduate students
applied to full-time and partial students in the winter
session. It does not include extra-sessional, evening or
|pummer Session students. He also said UBC will
probably reach its gross undergraduate enrolment
within five years, but it may take up to ten years to
reach the graduate enrolment ceiling.
The debate on enrolment limitation has had a long
and stormy history at UBC. When the matter was
raised in previous years, one argument prevailed in
the decision to retain an "open door" admission
The argument was simply this: UBC was the only
institution in the province offering post-secondary
education and a decision to restrict enrolment would
deny opportunities for higher education to thousands
of qualified students.
During the 1960s, however, UBC's monopoly on
higher education ended. The province now boasts
kfour universities — Simon Fraser University, the
'University of Victoria and Notre Dame University as
well as UBC — and the continued growth of
community colleges and technical institutes in various
parts of B.C. has made post-secondary education
available to most of the young people of the province
who wish to take advantage of it.
The other factor which has complicated the
picture is UBC's increasing difficulty in maintaining
educational standards in the face of restricted
operating and capital budgets while at the same time
coping with burgeoning enrolments.
Ten years ago a proposal to restrict enrolment
would have met with an icy reception. In 1970,
however, the climate has moderated and there is a
general feeling throughout the University that some
restriction on enrolment is desirable.
The burning question has always been: how many
students can UBC accommodate?
The limits proposed by the Senate Committee on
Long-Range Objectives, chaired by Dr. Cyril Belshaw,
head of the Department of Anthropology and
Sociology, were based on "consideration of
interrelated academic, social and physical factors
involved in further substantial growth in enrolment"
and primarily a concern for the quality of education
on the campus, and secondarily on the lack of
facilities for the number of students now on the
When Senate met last Saturday to begin debate on
the committee's recommendations almost ten months
had elapsed since the proposals on enrolment
limitation had first been presented to Senate.
(The first four chapters of the Belshaw report,
including the one dealing with admissions policy,
were first presented to Senate on May 21, 1969.
There was a special meeting of Senate for a general
, ..o. 6/Feb. 12, 1970/Vancouver 8, B.C.
discussion of the report on Nov. 1, 1969, and a
continuation of the debate at a regular meeting on
Nov. 12, 1969).
In addition to these Senate meetings, the report
had been referred to each of UBC's 12 faculties for
Considering the length of time which has elapsed
since the enrolment restriction proposals were first
presented, the opinions of UBC's various faculties, as
presented by the deans at the opening of the Feb. 7
meeting, must have come as a surprise to some
Not a single dean said his faculty had been
unequivocally in favor of the enrolment figures
suggested by the Committee. The recurring theme
which ran through their presentations was that some
enrolment restriction seemed to be necessary but the
faculties were undecided as to exactly what the
ceiling should be.
The Faculty of Science felt undergraduate
enrolment should be limited to 20,000 students and
graduate enrolment to 5,000; the committee's
recommendation to restrict enrolment in the Faculty
of Agricultural Sciences was termed a "preposterous
proposal"; the Faculty of Forestry was "uneasy"
about proposals which might ultimately restrict entry
to their discipline; the Faculty of Commerce felt the
enrolment proposals were "reasonable but arbitrary,"
and the Faculty of Education, which tended to
support an open-enrolment policy, would support the
committee's proposed enrolment limitation as a
provisional measure only.
The Faculty presentations brought Dr. Belshaw to
his feet with the comment that while the remarks had
been important they failed to reflect an overview of
the University's situation.
The committee's recommendations, he said, were
an analysis of something which it felt was wrong at
the University and the Faculty comments failed to
recognize whether or not that analysis was right or
wrong or, if the Faculties felt the committee was
wrong, what should be done about it.
No one on the committee, he continued, expected
that any particular recommendation would be
accepted as written, but the committee did expect
that the discussion would be one that would turn into
a positive statement.
Senate had expressed an interest in altering
policies, e.g., controlling enrolment, but when such
principles were turned into concrete proposals Senate
was no longer in favor of them because it was at that
point that the vested interests of the Faculties came
to be modified, Dr. Belshaw concluded.
This preliminary sparring on the enrolment
question continued with a statement by Miss D.J.
O'Donnell, a student Senator, who noted that there
appeared to be "an incredible amount of agreement"
on the question of enrolment restriction based on a
faith in the adequacy of other post-secondary
institutions in B.C.
She said she was opposed to an enrolment
restriction based on academic achievement, which
does two "underhanded and perhaps immoral
First, she said, it lies to students by telling them
they   won't   be   able   to   continue   their  education
because they're not smart enough, not because the
educational system is inadequate and the University
can't afford to educate them or be bothered to take
them in.
Second, the result of an enrolment limitation
based on academic qualifications will be that UBC
will become less integrated with other institutions
and more elitist and this will decrease the relative
academic and social acceptability of other B.C.
Finally, Senate chairman President Walter Gage
called on Senate to consider the first item on the
day's agenda, the first recommendation of the
Long-Range Objectives Committee, which proposed
that UBC's admission policy be modified: (1) to limit
undergraduate enrolment on the campus to 22,000
students; (2) to limit the rate of increase of total
graduate enrolment to 15 per cent annually and, (3)
to limit graduate enrolment to 5,500.
Senate agreed, at the suggestion of Dr. Robert M.
Clark, UBC's academic planner, to consider the first
part of the recommendation separately from the
other two.
The pivotal speech of the day was then made by
Dean W.D. Liam Finn, the newly-appointed Dean of
the Faculty of Applied Science, who moved that
UBC's undergraduate enrolment be limited to a
maximum of 22,000 students.
He began by saying there were two points to be
kept in mind in discussing enrolment limitations.
First, it was proper to ask if the recommendation
before Senate was a mechanical response to the
difficulties of running a large institution on limited
resources. The committee had been partly motivated
by this, he said, but the question of moral
responsibility had also been raised.
He said that while there was a collective moral
responsibility by the province to ensure that there
was an adequate system of higher education, there
was also a moral responsibility on the part of the
University to students who pay their fees and expect
something for it.
There must be a threshold, he said, below which
Senate will not allow the University's performance to
fall and UBC is coming perilously close to that
threshold in many areas. There is nothing
reprehensible about limiting enrolment because
resources are limited and there is no reason to be
ashamed for acting on the kind of pressure which this
situation generates.
A second reason for limiting enrolment, Dean Finn
continued, was the feeling that when an institution
becomes too large it is not functional in an
educational sense.
Senate, he said, should decide on some enrolment
limit, even if it is 60,000 students, in order that
future planning and a curriculum tailored to that
number could be worked out.
Faculty Senators could not take the position that
the University should limit enrolment, but "not in
my Faculty, not in my department, because we need
lots of people of the kind I produce."
He referred to earlier remarks by Dean Joseph
Gardner, head of the Faculty of Forestry, who
expressed concern that limitation would prevent
expansion of his faculty. Dean Finn said it could be
asked if UBC was the only supplier of manpower for
the forest industry and to what extent the University
should contribute.
"We have to strike these balances," he told Senate,
"but we're not going to solve the problem by
everyone feeling that limitation is somebody else's
problem, not mine."
Senate, he continued, has been clamouring to play
a positive role in UBC's affairs and to do that Senate
must take stands on issues when they arise. The
Belshaw committee had spent 16 months on its
report and  now there were suggestions for further
Please turn to Page Four
See Enrolment Who Is
Dr. Raymond Firth, one of the world's
outstanding living anthropologists, recently
returned to the London School of Economics
after a four-month sojourn with UBC's
department of anthropology and sociology as
a Canada Council Fellow.
During his time at UBC he conducted a
seminar and UBC anthropology students had
the opportunity to study under a scholar
whose books have been described as some of
the finest anthropological studies in existence.
His best-known book "We, the Tikopia: A
Sociological Study of Kinship in Primitive
Polynesia" has been called a "model of
anthropological research."
Dr. Firth began his work at a time when
anthropology as a discipline was lost in the
shadowy regions of impressionistic
interpretations of the nature of man.
He was among the first to develop
on-the-spot field work techniques. Instead of
sitting comfortably at home, depending on
second-hand reports, and speculating about
how primitive societies function, Dr. Firth
lived for two years on the Island of Tikopia,
learned to speak the language of the native
people, and closely observed their social
customs and habits at first-hand before
writing his book.
Basic as this may seem, such on-the-spot
fieldwork was rare at the time. Dr. Firth's
example was an important influence in the
development of anthropology as a social
Using his careful research techniques. Dr.
Firth's studies have ranged from "We, The
Tikopia" to his latest work, "Two Studies of
Kinship in London," an investigation of
kinship patterns of man in modern-day
Dr. Firth carried out extensive fieldwork
in Malaya as well as Tikopia, He has been
responsible for assisting in the development of
anthropological research and the growth of
new Universities in siimost every part of the
Commonwealth, including former colonies in
Africa and Asia.
He was responsible for the initial
developments in anthropology and in the
whole field of Pacific studies at the Australian
National University.
Dr. Firth has also been a visiting professor
at such universities as Chicago, Harvard, and
Bergen, and has received honorary degrees
from many of them. He has also worked
extensively with UNESCO and with the
United Nations and was chairman of the
United Nations working group which first
analysed the components in the international
index of levels of living.
Dr. Firth sees the purpose of anthropology
as trying to produce awareness about the kind
of society in which we live. Although stressing
that his views were purely personal, he talked
with UBC Reports about some of the
problems of today's society and about row
they are affecting young people.
"The kinds of problems we are faced with in
today's society are so fundamental that we need
a revolution in our ethic to cope with them,"
was Dr. Raymond Firth's conclusion after a
wide-ranging conversation in which he
contrasted social organization in the age of man
in bark cloth with social organization in the age
of man in the space suit.
In the early 1930's when Dr. Firth lived on
Tikopia, the natives wore bark cloth and he
found their society to be small, self-contained
and very highly kinship oriented. Ownership of
land, feasting, marriages, deaths, all took place
within the closely-knit kinship system in which
everybody in the island community was related
to everybody else.
"In societies like the Tikopia's, the kinship
system operates as the social security system,"
Dr. Firth observed, pointing out that in more
complex societies the kinship system breaks
down and unless other mechanisms within the
society are developed which can take the place
of kinship, individuals may feel "very much
more vulnerable."
Dr. Firth finds, however, that the kinds of
economic and political structures which have
grown up to regulate modern technological
society are in many respects "terrifying."
"We take for granted our technological
development and we like so many of j^fcthings
it gives us. But the implications both inrerms of
actual technology...pollution...the H-bomb...and
in terms of the kinds of economic and political
structures which have grown up in order to
handle these things are really terrifying,"" h^P
Dr. Firth said that the major difficulty with
many of our social and economic structures is
that they are so difficult to influence. He said
that this is a problem which today's young
people have perceived clearly and to him it is a
"quite warming sign" that they are protesting
about it. *" *y*
"I think that the difficulty is that some of thh
organs of society, particularly in the economic
and political spheres, have developed an
autonomy of their own. They are very difficult
to dislodge from any position they have taken
up," he said.
Dr. Firth believes that the reason political ancf
economic organs of society are so difficult tc,
influence is that "You can't get at the operative;
human factors involved." He said this is what
irritates and frustrates young people ancl
provokes them to go "bursting into offices."
"They want a face-to-face confrontation
where they can say their piece and get across "io
K '
2/UBC Reports/February 12, 1970 D TO COPE WITH TODAY'S PROBLEMS
the people who make the decisions what they
AMk," he said.
Dr. Firth said a second major problem of
modern society is the need to control some of
the unanticipated byproducts of technological
development and he cited pollution as the most
obvious example.
"The unanticipated effects of modern
technology are so spectacular and so devastating
that I don't wonder that young people are
responding to the realisation of this by some
kind of protest, if not by actual revolt," he said.
Again Dr. Firth said that the problem is that
the control of these things is inaccessible to the
individual."The kinds of protests that are made
are very often either not acceded to or acceded
to only insofar as they don't encroach too far on
the profit-making situation or the 'national
interest' as defined by the politicians in power,"
he said.
Dr. Firth, however, rejects violent forrns of
protest and believes that the western type of
democratic process, although cumbersome, is
still "our hope" for exercising control. "I think
the violent way is self-defeating," he said. "In
this instance some young peoples' analysis of
society is incorrect and they just bring down the
forces of repression against them," he said.
Even more important to Dr. Firth than the
pollution problem are the human problems
within society such as the plight of the Canadian
Indians. He believes pollution will be controlled
in the long-range interests of those who are in
charge, but that it is a "nobody's long-range
interest to do anything really radical about the
"What has struck me about the Canadian
scene is that pollution gets enormous amounts
of space in the newspaper, but the plight of the
Indian is tucked away in relatively small
paragraphs. The Indian problem seems to me to
be one of the really vital problems in terms of
human relationships and human values," he said.
In his description of Tikopian society, Dr.
Firth said that the Tikopia, when he first lived
with them, did not understand the use of
money. The economy of the island operated on
a system of gift-exchange, constructed in
relation to the system of kinship. When a
fisherman had two fish and his brother none, he
gave one to his brother, said Dr. Firth.
Although reminiscent of the concept of
communal living being advocated by many of
today's young people who want to opt out of
the rat race and return to a more "primitive"
life-style   where   everybody   shares and  shares
alike,  Dr.   Firth was quick to reject any such
idealistic interpretation of Tikopian society.
"The Tikopia are not at all a society living by
love and friendship alone," he said. "They are in
some ways greedy and highly self-interested.
They are very human." Like all human beings,
the Tikopia have a co-mingling of attitudes, Dr.
Firth said. "The element of self-interest on the
one hand and the perception that self-interest is
also self-destructive are always at war in
humanity," he said. "A balance must be found
between social interests on the one hand and
self-interest on the other."
Dr. Firth does feel, however, that behind
today's youths' rejection of materialistic values
lies a very sound social instinct. "While many
young people are exasperated because they still
want the kind of consumption standards their
parents had without being willing to go out and
graft for it, their basic attitudes in this respect
are sound," he said.
Dr. Firth also admires youth's focus on
esthetic values, and he credits them with having
restored poetry to a place of dignity. "Forty
years ago poetry was something which belonged
to a very esoteric circle," he said. "Now poetry
appeals to an enormous crowd of people."
T^J       7l UBC Reports/February 12, 1970/3 SEX A SERIOUS BUSINESS
Assistant Information Officer, UBC
Sex is a serious subject for many UBC students.
Human Relations and Sex Education, the most
popular and well-attended non-credit course ever
given at UBC, attracted a total registration of
almost 900 students this year.
Offered for the second year in a row, the course
is totally student-organized and is sponsored by
Interprofessional Education (an interdisciplinary
group of students from Medicine, Law, Education
and other Faculties) in conjunction with the
Education Undergraduate Society.
"Human Sexual ResRonse,""CulturaI Attitudes
to Human Sexuality," "Sexual Deviancies," "Law
and Sex," and "Family Planning and the
Population Explosion" are some of the topics
dealt with.
The course consists of hour-long lectures by
UBC faculty members who are acknowledged
authorities in their field. Following each lecture,
participants in the course divide into groups of
approximately 15 for seminar discussions
conducted by senior and graduate students. Some
77 students are acting as seminar leaders.
Students were frank, although sometimes
flippant, about discussing their reasons for
enrolling: "I want to find out what I don't know!"
quipped one young miss. An engineering student
claimed to be "very inexperienced" and said he
was attending because "I'm interested in new
Many students, however, revealed a desire to
approach the subject of sex and human relations in
an enlightened way as their primary motive for
taking the course.
It was another engineering student who said it
best: "I'm taking it so that I can get rid of any
hangups I might have. I don't want to be backward
in my attitude toward sex. I want to have a good,
clean attitude toward it and I think this course will
A simple desire for more information motivated
others. A girl who claimed, "We didn't learn
anything in high school," said she just wanted to
"learn something general about it" and added
somewhat defensively: "I mean it is not going to
hurt me. I don't think..."
The major reason for attending for most
students, however, was professional. Education,
Social Work, and Physical Education and
Recreation students said they wanted to be
prepared to answer some of the questions they
expect to be asked by young people when they
entered their various professions.
"This is something that we've just got to know
about, especially with sex education coming into
the schools and being so important."..."! think it
may help me answer some of the possible
questions the kids may ask."..."l feel I should find
out a bit more about it so that I can be relaxed in
the class if it ever comes, up," were some of the
comments made by Education students.
"I think I migtrtfje able to use it when ii'm;'
working with young people and adolescents," said
a student in Recreation and a student in Social
Work said: "I expect to be doing counselling."
According =<o this year's course coordinator,
Isobel Semple, the Sex Education and Human
Relations course has been specifically designed to
meet the very needs most often expressed by
"It has been designed to help students meet
their Own personal aril professional r&eds in the
area of human sexuality in a manner that fosters
openness and honesty," she said.
Students paid a $2 registration fee to attend the
non-credit course that will add another 30 hours
to their regular study programs. Faculty support
and contributions from various organizations such
as the Registered Nurses of B.C., the B.C. Teachers
Federation;? and the UBC Alumni Association
helped to defer the cost of conducting the course.
Miss Semple estimates the total cost of the
course, including honorariums for the lecturers
and seminar leaders, at $5,000 and said that this
year's organizers planned to set aside
approximately $1,000 toward the cost of
conducting the course again nexty<far.
The students werf u|ianftliiMi| however, in
saying they thought the course should be offered
for credit as part of the University's regular
curriculum. The said it should be required for
some professions such as teaching, social work,
and recreation and that it should be available as an
elective for any other students wishing to take it
Human Relations and Sex Education continues
Monday nights from 7 to 10 p.m. until March 16.
Continued from Page One
study that might take another 16 months.
Referring to opportunities for education for native
Indians and other minorities, Dean Finn asked if the
University would be doing a favor to people with an
inferior academic background by enrolling them at
UBC. "Is that educational opportunity or is it
intellectual murder?" he asked.
He said there were reasons for wanting an
institution to grow, including advantages resulting
from variety and diversity of curriculum and faculty.
But UBC, he pointed out, was well beyond this.
When it comes down to voting on issues such as
enrolment limitation, he said, Senators as individuals
must be guided by the vision each has for the
Dean Finn said he saw nothing wrong with a
mission-oriented goal for UBC and as dean of a
technical, research-oriented Faculty his goal was to
turn out a technically compentent person with the
vision to look at the problems which technology is
creating in society.
Over and above that, he said, the Faculty of
Applied Science feels it has a mission to supply the
research which is needed to solve the problems which
have already been created.
He wound up by appealing to Senate, for the sake
of the University, the province and, above all, for the
sake of Senate itself, to take a stand on the enrolment
question by voting in favor of the motion.
Despite the fact that Senate went on considering
the motion for almost an hour, it was clear at the end
of the meeting that Dean Finn's speech had mobilized
Senate's thinking and led it to accept the
recommendations made by the Belshaw committee.
4/UBC Reports/February 12. 1970
Before it came to voting on the committee's
proposals. Senate had to vote on two amendments to
limit undergraduate enrolment to 18,000 and 20,000
students. Both amendments failed.
Dr. Clark, replying to questions, pointed out that
the limitation of 22,000 students applied to gross
University enrolment and that the ceiling would
probably be reached within five years.
When it came finally to a vote on the Committee's
recommendation to limit the total undergraduate
enrolment to a maximum of 22,000, Senate approved
the proposal by a substantial majority.
Having cleared the hurdle of undergraduate
enrolment. Senate wasted little time approving the
other proposals in the same recommendation to limit
the annual rate of increase in graduate enrolment to
15 per cent, to a maximum of 5,500.
Dean Finn, who again spoke to the motion, said
the 5,500 figure, in relation to an undergraduate
enrolment of 22,000, was a common one in schools
that have a strong graduate program.
The reason for defining a rate of increase was that
development of research facilities required the
gradual creation of laboratory space and purchase of
expensive equipment.
His remarks were supplemented by Dr. Ben Moyls,
acting Dean of Graduate Studies, who said an
enrolment restriction of 5,500 would not embarrass
the Faculty within the next five years and probably
not within the next ten years.
The motion regarding graduate enrolment carried
by a substantial majority.
Before it adjourned Senate agreed to hold special
meetings on March 4 and 18 to continue its
discussion of the recommendations in the report of
the Committee on Long-Range Objectives.
Alistair Cooke
Speaks Feb. 25
Alistair Cooke, one of the world's best known
journalists, will lecture at the University of B.C.
Wednesday (Feb. 25) at 12:30 p.m.
Mr. Cooke will speak on "How Does the Rest of
the World See America?" in the Frederic Wood
Theatre. His UBC lecture is sponsored by the
Vancouver Sun.
Mr.   Cooke  is best  known  for  his  "Letter frorr^^k
America"   series of  radio  commentaries,   broadcaster
weekly by the British Broadcasting Corporation, and
his dispatches to the Manchester Guardian, one of
Britain's leading newspapers.
He is also well known as the former coordinator
and guiding light of the award-winning television
series entitled "Omnibus" and as host of the United
Nations' "International Zone," a series which
interpreted the world organization to television
Born in England and educated at Cambridge
University, Mr. Cooke accepted a fellowship that
took him to Yale Drama School. He abandoned a
theatrical career to enter journalism and was a
correspondent for The Times of London before
becoming The Guardian's chief American writer. He^^
has now broadcast well over 1,000 Letters from^^^
America for the BBC.
Mr. Cooke is also the author of a number of
books, the best known of which is A Generation on
Trial, an account of the court case surrounding Alger
Hiss, a former American government official accused
in 1948 of helping to transmit confidential
government documents to the Russians. Hiss denied
the charges and was convicted of perjury in Jan.,
Deadline Set
Students who expect to graduate this year must
file "Application for Graduation" cards with the
Registrar's Office not later than Monday, Feb. 16.
The regulation also applies to students who are
registered in a year not normally considered a
graduating year, such as the one-year teacher training
program for graduates, but who expect to complete a
degree program in the spring.
Students who have not received the cards in the
mail can obtain them in departmental offices and at
the Registrar's Office in the General Service
Administration Building. The names of students who
fail to file the cards will be omitted from the
graduating lists placed before the Faculties and
Senate for approval.
■■■A4% Volume 16, No. 6-Feb. 12,
11D 1" 1970. Published by the Univer-
IIII II sity of British Columbia and
^^ mm^ ^^ distributed free. J.A. Banham,
REPORTS Edjtor; Barbara Claghorn, Production Supervisor. Letters to the Editor
should be addressed to the Information Office,
UBC, Vancouver 8, B.C.


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