Ernest L. Boyer Sr. (1993)
Ernest L. Boyer, Sr. was the leading educational spokesperson and reformer in the U.S. during the 1970s and ‘80s. He was an advocate for integration and connections between the disciplines, the founder of the experimental Empire College, a proponent of rewarding faculty for teaching and a tireless supporter of the scholarship of teaching. During his 40-year career, he served as director of the Western College Association’s Commission to Improve the Education of Teachers and director of the Center for Coordinated Education at UC-Santa Barbara; chancellor of the State University of New York; a member of national education commissions under Presidents Nixon, Ford, and Carter, and then U.S. Commissioner of Education; and president of The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. As SUNY chancellor, he not only founded the Empire State College as a non-campus school in which adults could study for degrees without attending classes, but also set up an experimental three-year Bachelor of Arts program, and established a new rank of Distinguished Teaching Professor to reward faculty members for educational distinction as well as research. In Scholarship Reconsidered: Priorities of the Professoriate he identified four legitimate kinds of scholarship: discovery, integration, application, and teaching. This report has created debates around the country and has influenced many colleges and universities to evaluate their faculty differently. While president of The Carnegie Foundation he co-authored with Arthur Levine A Quest for Common Learning: The Aims of General Education, which proposed that general education at the college level become more integrated. A call for greater integration between the disciplines was to be a recurring theme in his other reports through the years.
Based on information provided by the Ernest L. Boyer Center, Messiah College, Grantham, Pennsylvania. Photo also courtesy of the Ernest L. Boyer Center. To access the Center’s webpage on Ernest L. Boyer, click here.
(Photo courtesy of Ernest L. Boyer Center, Messiah College)