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The amateur hour: a history of college teaching in America

Book Cover
Average Rating
Publisher:
Johns Hopkins University Press
Pub. Date:
2020
Language:
English
Description
"This is the first book-length history of college teaching in America, which traditionally has been a matter of imitation for instructors rather than formal training. Drawing on extensive unpublished manuscript material, the book weaves together student, faculty, and administrative perspectives in a rich portrait of undergraduate classrooms across time. It also documents long-standing but largely unknown efforts to reform college instruction by making it more personal, especially at research institutions"--
American college teaching is in crisis, or so we are told. But we've heard that complaint for the past 150 years, as critics have denounced the poor quality of instruction in undergraduate classrooms. Students daydream in gigantic lecture halls while a professor drones on, or they meet with a teaching assistant for an hour of aimless discussion. The modern university does not reward teaching, so faculty members at every level neglect it in favor of research and publication. In the first book-length history of American college teaching, Jonathan Zimmerman confirms but also contradicts these perennial complaints. Drawing upon a wide range of previously unexamined sources, The Amateur Hour shows how generations of undergraduates indicted the weak instruction they received. But Zimmerman also chronicles institutional efforts to improve it, especially by making teaching more "personal." As higher education grew into a gigantic industry, he writes, American colleges and universities introduced small-group activities and other reforms designed to counter the anonymity of mass instruction. They also experimented with new technologies like television and computers, which promised to "personalize" teaching by tailoring it to the individual interests and abilities of each student. But, Zimmerman reveals, the emphasis on the personal inhibited the professionalization of college teaching, which remains, ultimately, an amateur enterprise. The more that Americans treated teaching as a highly personal endeavor, dependent on the idiosyncrasies of the instructor, the less they could develop shared standards for it. Nor have they rigorously documented college instruction, a highly public activity which has taken place mostly in private. Pushing open the classroom door, The Amateur Hour illuminates American college teaching and frames a fresh case for restoring intimate learning communities, especially for America's least privileged students. Anyone who wants to change college teaching will have to start here
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ISBN:
9781421439105
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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID421f839d-8e82-0459-0c9f-a7b8b616d9e5
Grouping Titleamateur hour a history of college teaching in america
Grouping Authorjonathan zimmerman
Grouping Categorybook
Grouping LanguageEnglish (eng)
Last Grouping Update2022-09-07 20:43:36PM
Last Indexed2022-09-26 05:21:51AM

Solr Fields

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author_display
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Aims Greeley Circulation
display_description
"This is the first book-length history of college teaching in America, which traditionally has been a matter of imitation for instructors rather than formal training. Drawing on extensive unpublished manuscript material, the book weaves together student, faculty, and administrative perspectives in a rich portrait of undergraduate classrooms across time. It also documents long-standing but largely unknown efforts to reform college instruction by making it more personal, especially at research institutions"-- American college teaching is in crisis, or so we are told. But we've heard that complaint for the past 150 years, as critics have denounced the poor quality of instruction in undergraduate classrooms. Students daydream in gigantic lecture halls while a professor drones on, or they meet with a teaching assistant for an hour of aimless discussion. The modern university does not reward teaching, so faculty members at every level neglect it in favor of research and publication. In the first book-length history of American college teaching, Jonathan Zimmerman confirms but also contradicts these perennial complaints. Drawing upon a wide range of previously unexamined sources, The Amateur Hour shows how generations of undergraduates indicted the weak instruction they received. But Zimmerman also chronicles institutional efforts to improve it, especially by making teaching more "personal." As higher education grew into a gigantic industry, he writes, American colleges and universities introduced small-group activities and other reforms designed to counter the anonymity of mass instruction. They also experimented with new technologies like television and computers, which promised to "personalize" teaching by tailoring it to the individual interests and abilities of each student. But, Zimmerman reveals, the emphasis on the personal inhibited the professionalization of college teaching, which remains, ultimately, an amateur enterprise. The more that Americans treated teaching as a highly personal endeavor, dependent on the idiosyncrasies of the instructor, the less they could develop shared standards for it. Nor have they rigorously documented college instruction, a highly public activity which has taken place mostly in private. Pushing open the classroom door, The Amateur Hour illuminates American college teaching and frames a fresh case for restoring intimate learning communities, especially for America's least privileged students. Anyone who wants to change college teaching will have to start here
format_aimslibrary
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format_category_aimslibrary
Books
id
421f839d-8e82-0459-0c9f-a7b8b616d9e5
isbn
9781421439105
itype_aimslibrary
General Circulating
last_indexed
2022-09-26T11:21:51.526Z
lexile_score
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literary_form
Non Fiction
literary_form_full
Non Fiction
local_callnumber_aimslibrary
LB2331 .Z56 2020
local_time_since_added_aimslibrary
Year
owning_library_aimslibrary
Aims Community College
owning_location_aimslibrary
Aims Community College - Greeley
primary_isbn
9781421439105
publishDate
2020
publisher
Johns Hopkins University Press
recordtype
grouped_work
subject_facet
College teaching
College teaching -- United States -- History
Education, Higher
Education, Higher -- United States -- History
Electronic books
History
Learning and scholarship
Learning and scholarship -- United States -- History
Savoir et érudition -- États-Unis -- Histoire
Savoir et érudition -- États-Unis -- Histoire
United States
title_display
The amateur hour : a history of college teaching in America
title_full
The amateur hour : a history of college teaching in America / Jonathan Zimmerman
title_short
The amateur hour
title_sub
a history of college teaching in America
topic_facet
College teaching
Education, Higher
Histoire
History
Learning and scholarship
Savoir et érudition
Savoir et érudition

Solr Details Tables

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ebscoccu:on1194528709on1194528709Ebsco (CCU)Online Ebsco (CCU)eBookeBook1falsetrueEbsco (CCU)http://ezproxy.ccu.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&scope=site&db=nlebk&AN=2446106Available OnlineEbsco (CCU)
ils:.b61930465.i142249233Aims Greeley CirculationLB2331 .Z56 20201falsefalseOn Shelfaigci

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Bib IdFormatFormat CategoryEditionLanguagePublisherPublication DatePhysical DescriptionAbridged
fortlewisebscoebooksub:on1194528709eBookeBookEnglishJohns Hopkins University Press20201 online resource (x, 294 pages)
ebscoccu:on1194528709eBookeBookEnglishJohns Hopkins University Press20201 online resource (x, 294 pages)
ils:.b61930465BookBooksEnglishJohns Hopkins University Press20201 online resource (x, 294 pages)

scoping_details_aimslibrary

Bib IdItem IdGrouped StatusStatusLocally OwnedAvailableHoldableBookableIn Library Use OnlyLibrary OwnedHoldable PTypesBookable PTypesLocal Url
ils:.b61930465.i142249233On ShelfOn Shelffalsetruetruefalsefalsetrue188, 189, 190, 191