Learning vs. Teaching in Today's Universities

I am disappointed with your editorial "Put Scholars Before Dollars," April 12: The purpose of a university is not teaching; it is learning. Faculty members at outstanding universities learn by doing research, giving papers, attending conferences, and consulting in their field. They do this in order to help students learn. Recent discussions of higher education have omitted the students' duty to learn. Treating the student as a consumer whose success is the full responsibility of the faculty has led to gr ade inflation and a consequent decline in the quality of education. If students and parents give teaching a priority, let them spend their money at a small liberal arts college or a teaching university. Virginia Davis Nordin, Lexington, Ky. Associate Professor, Higher Education Policy Studies University of Kentucky

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please fax letters to (617) 450-2317 or address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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