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Nature volume 131, pages 597599 (29 April 1933) | Download Citation



IN an address to the University of New Zealand, referred to briefly in NATURE of April 15, p. 538, the Chancellor, Dr. J. Macmillan Brown, emphasised the need for building university education on broader foundations than the narrow specialisation which seems to prevail. Every degree, however specialised or technical, should have as its first stage the broadest culture possible. In this Dr. Macmillan Brown was only echoing a point of view stressed at greater length by Dr. Flexner in his well-known work “Universities: English, American and German”, as well as by Prof. Findlay and others in recent addresses. The absence of anything like a true universitas literarum has long been lamented by close observers of our university life who have seen the dangers of the rapid development and inevitable specialisation, which result in young men of all countries being so immersed in their own special branches of science that they have scarcely the time or energy to devote to the study of more comprehensive problems.

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