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Archived Curricula Guide 2011–2012
Curricula Guide is archieved. Please refer to current Curricula Guides
HALL4210 Module 1 History and Primary Processes of Higher Education 15 ECTS
Organised by
Administrative Science
Person in charge
Course is available for:
  • Major subject students

General description

The course is offered at the University of Oslo. The course consists of two units: Unit 1 The History and Philosophy of Higher Education and Unit 2: Students and Staff in Higher Education

Learning outcomes

Unit 1 aims at giving the students an understanding of how the development of higher education is linked to the development of the society at large, the shifting forces of order and authority and, eventually, the emergence of 'science' as the generally accepted legitimate basis of knowledge. The students are provided with a historical background for the understanding of the present-day complex pattern of higher education institutions and 'systems'.
Unit 2 aims to enable students to conceptualise and critically analyse the primary processes and its relations in higher education.


Unit 1: describes the historical and ideological legacy of the university, from its medieval origins until the present-day 'mass university' and 'research university'. Particular attention will be paid to the 19th century educational and institutional reforms and the rise of the 'Humboldtian ideal' of the research-based university. Alternatives to the Humboldtian model will be studied, e.g. the Anglo-American concept of 'liberal education'.
Unit 2: focuses on recent research and theorising about research, teaching and student learning, and a number of theoretical frameworks within which new development in the organization of learning, teaching and assessment can be understood, will be presented and discussed. In addition there will be a focus on curriculum development. Topics to be included are: curriculum as a signpost for educational change, from mental models to contextual/ situated models of learning and expertise, assessment - between learning and control, students journey through higher education, academic roles and challenges, and the relationship between teaching and research. The overall perspective put emphasis on the importance of ethical deliberations concerning the enterprise of teaching and research and the importance of a critical understanding of the past and present teaching and learning traditions.

Teaching methods

Teaching method Contact Online

Teaching language


Modes of study


Numeric 1-5.

Study materials

All students have to study a compendium consisting of the core literature for the two units (about 900 pages in total).

Belongs to following study modules

Archived Teaching Schedule. Please refer to current Teaching Shedule.
School of Management