UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Development of the two-year college in British Columbia Soles, Andrew Edwin


The thesis examines several important aspects of the development and growth of the two-year college in the United States and Canada and compares these with the developments presently underway in British Columbia. Its design, therefore, is essentially historical and descriptive. The study begins with an examination of a number of significant principles which emerged during the early colonial periods in the United States and Canada and which have given shape and purpose to the systems of education now followed in both countries. Included among these principles is the concept of universal education, free and state controlled but still allowing for some measure of local autonomy and guaranteeing equal opportunity for all. The thesis then moves to a consideration of the growth patterns of two-year colleges in the two countries, delineating the forces which gave impetus to this growth and comparing the forms which have evolved and the conditions which have shaped them with those presently in evidence in this province. Next to be identified and discussed are the purposes and the goals which American and Canadian educators have set for the colleges which have developed or are being developed in their respective countries. The relevance and worth of these to the movement in British Columbia is examined and additional purposes and goals are suggested. Another area which is explored in the thesis is that of curriculum development. Here attention is focused upon the emergence of four types of junior college programmes-liberal arts and science, technical, vocational trades training and general education. Again the developments in the United States and Canada are compared with those taking place in British Columbia. Yet another area examined is that of the administrative organizations which have evolved and the personnel who must director serve under them. The roles and characteristics of the board of governors, the senior and junior administrators, the faculty and the students are discussed in some detail. The problems confronting each of these groups, and the expectations which each holds or must meet are examined. Finally an attempt is made to measure the dimensions of the task facing those who are charged with the responsibility of developing district and regional colleges in British Columbia. A list of thirty-five questions which help to point up some of the problem areas, has been compiled. Of these five have been selected for special attention: 1. Can district and regional colleges achieve comprehensiveness? 2. Will the colleges be able to recruit and retain faculty who possess those special qualities or that particular philosophy which can best serve college students? 3. How can the colleges best achieve the articulation of their courses with those in the secondary schools and with those in the university or other institutions or agencies of higher education? 4. Can the colleges achieve curricular articulation and still remain autonomous? 5. What is the place of the district and regional colleges in the total educational system of British Columbia? The thesis sets out an approach which might be followed in solving the problems which these important questions reveal in the hope of making some contribution to the healthy and orderly development of the two-year college in British Columbia.

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