Robert Harris On The Purpose Of Liberal Arts Education

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For 25 years, Robert Harris a writer and educator has spent his time teaching at the college and university level. He wrote the article, “On the Purpose of a Liberal Arts Education” in 1991. He based many of his ideas on John Henry Cardinal Newman’s work entitles The Idea of a University. According to the author, many students are surprised at the general education classes. Students wonder why someone should study subjects that have nothing directly to do with those fields. Why should students study for any subject outside of their major? He argues liberal arts education teaches students how to think, how to learn, how to see things as a whole, how to become good teachers, and how to be happier. First, liberal arts education teaches students how to think. The mind is a very complex thing. Exercising the mind in a certain study could help students grasp ideas in another. Training the mind to become resourceful can strengthen the mind to more possibilities of intellectual work. Once students develop good habits of thinking, they can grasps idea more easily. Thinking has its own orderly structure and set of rules. By mastering the concept of one subject, students will…show more content…
Learning knowledge will expand the mind to more possibilites. Students who study liberal arts education will begin to see the world through different realities. As armchair philosopher has said, “When the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.” Also, having a broad education will allow students to see how ideas can contrast and compare. For example, in economics students would learn supply and demand. While, in science class student would learn cause and effect. Also, to be very educated in a liberal arts education learners can hold a stable foundation to their future jobs. It will teach students concepts that can help relate them to their job and to be better at what you

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