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Title: Early UNE: an era of education for life by elation
Contributor(s): Johnstone, Ian M (author)
Publication Date: 2014
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Abstract: Reflecting on the early years of the University of New England prompts these two observations: (1) 'nothing makes learning easier than eagerness to understand and remember'; and (2) 'there is more emphasis now on learning how to make a living, than on learning how best to live'. There are many reasons, but no complete explanation, as to why the years 1938 to about 1960 - i.e. just after our autonomy in 1954 - were seen by many as a golden era. Those times remain for many 'the good old days' of UNE. There was an ethos of enthusiasm; group zeal is a valuable atmosphere in which to learn. The tone of early UNE influenced its later tone, through to at least the 1970s, and the Colleges still provide vibrant living and learning opportunities. The later changes in staff attitudes and style of administrators are a different topic; brief comment on them is made later by way of conclusion. It was possible in early UNE, because there were so few students, to mix with those in other years and studying different disciplines. A broad, liberal education was almost unavoidable. One's intellectual horizons were extended by knowing students studying neighbouring subjects, by browsing over books near the one you sought, and by looking at adjacent words in the dictionary. There was a more intimate atmosphere with fewer students and learning in smaller groups. For example, I remember Dr Keith McKenzie, who took us for English in 1956, saying to English I: 'It is a beautiful day so let's go outside'. And so we sat for the hour on the grassy bank above the retaining wall north of 'Bool'.
Publication Type: Book Chapter
Source of Publication: Came To New England, p. 72-85
Publisher: University of New England
Place of Publication: Armidale, Australia
ISBN: 9781921597596
Field of Research (FOR): 130199 Education systems not elsewhere classified
210303 Australian History (excl Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History)
130103 Higher Education
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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