One of my favourite blogs is Erin O’Connor’s Critical Mass, a blog dedicated to commentary on the state of academe in general and American higher education in particular. She is invariably interesting and unfailingly provocative, if not always right; and her discussions of academic freedom in all its guises have helped to clarify what I think about such matters. Last week, she blogged about a new report from the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA, where she is a Research Fellow) on Protecting the Free Exchange of Ideas. How Trustees Can Advance Intellectual Diversity on Campus (pdf); its abstract:
This report features ten best practices, gleaned from colleges and universities across the country, for promoting the free exchange of ideas in and out of the classroom. Since intellectual diversity is at the core of any true university education, the report commends institutions that have taken action, urges them to keep at it, and exhorts other boards to play their proper leadership role–working, of course, with administrators, faculty, alumni, and donors–in guaranteeing and enriching the intellectual environment on campus.
The ten principles discussed in detail in the report are
- Survey the campus climate.
- Incorporate intellectual diversity into institutional statements and policies.