Change and Harmonization in European Education


Robert H. Beck

Change and Harmonization in European Education was first published in 1971. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

Changes are taking place in European education, changes which, in many respects, point to a trend toward harmonization or integration of educational policies among various countries of Europe. Professor Beck surveys these developments in secondary and higher education in both Western and Eastern Europe and shows how common challenges and goals are being identified and met. The study is based on extensive travel and research.

As the author explains, Europeans, whether they live in England or in the Soviet Union, are committed to such goals as equality of educational opportunity, whatever one’s sex, place of residence, or family background. At the same time, Europeans are aware of such common problems as the difficulty of providing places in colleges or universities for all who would like to attend them. There is a common awareness among the different nationals of the desirability of making vocational-technical education more prestigious than it has been in the past, and of the need to temper the chauvinism that has characteristically run through much of the teaching until recently.

Changes in the educational systems of West Germany and Sweden receive especially close scrutiny in this study, and there is emphasis on the influence which several international agencies and organizations have exerted on the process of educational harmonization, among them, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Council for Cultural Cooperation (of the Council of Europe), the European Institute for University Studies, and the Comparative Education Society in Europe.

Robert H. Beck was a professor of the history and philosophy of education at the University of Minnesota. He is a co-author of the book The Changing Structure of Europe: Economic, Social, and Political Trends (Minnesota, 1970) and author or editor of other works.

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