Douglas College wordmark
Facebook logo Twitter logo Instagram logo Snapchat logo YouTube logo Wordpress logo

Registration for the Fall 2019 semester begins June 25.  Watch your email for more details.

back to search

The History of Education in the Western World Since 1500

Course Code: HIST 2230
Faculty: Humanities & Social Sciences
Department: History
Credits: 3.0
Semester: 15
Learning Format: Lecture, Seminar
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

This course will introduce students to the history of education in western societies from 1500 to the present. In this course students will examine approaches to the study of education, the rise and transformation of educational institutions, and relationships between schools, professions, culture and historical change. Students will read both secondary and primary sources (documents, memoirs, and novels), as well as explore a variety of visual representations of educational experiences (art, films, documentaries).

Course Content

  1. Introduction to the History of Education
  2. Research Methods in the History of Education
  3. Greek and Roman Origins of Western Education
  4. Medieval Education; The Medieval University
  5. Renaissance Education: Humanism, Liberal Arts, and Scholarship
  6. Religious Reformation and Education
  7. Education in the Age of Enlightenment
  8. Education and Revolution (1750-1815)
  9. Education and Industrialization (1800-1914)
  10. Education and Nation-Building in the Nineteenth Century
  11. Education, Elite Formation, and Ideology in the Nineteenth Century
  12. Education, Evolution, and Social Darwinism
  13. Imperialism and Education
  14. Education, Professions, and Politics in the Twentieth Century
  15. Russian Education in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries
  16. American Education in the Nineteenth Century
  17. American Education in the Twentieth Century
  18. Race, Nation and Education in Pre-Confederation Canada
  19. Race, Nation and Education in Post-Confederation Canada
  20. Campus Cultures, Universities, and Protests
  21. Gender, Ethnicity and Education
  22. Education and Culture Wars
  23. Mass Schooling, Literacy and Social Change
  24. Labour Markets and School Systems
  25. Education, Media, and Propaganda
  26. The Ends of Education in the Contemporary Western World

Methods of Instruction

The course will involve the use of a number of instructional methods to achieve its objectives, including the following:

  • lectures
  • small group discussions
  • seminar presentations by students
  • guest speakers
  • analysis and interpretation of audio-visual materials

Means of Assessment

Assessment will be in accord with the Douglas College student evaluation policy. Specific components of evaluation will include some of the following: mid-term and final exams consisting of short answer questions and essay questions; research paper; seminar presentations; short debate/position papers; participation in class discussions.

Specific evaluation criteria will be provided by the instructor at the beginning of the semester and will vary according to the instructor’s assessment of appropriate evaluation methods.

An example of one evaluation scheme:

Short essay assignment               10%
Seminar presentation  10%
Midterm exam  15%
Major research essay  25%
Final exam  25%
Participation  15%
Total 100%

Learning Outcomes

  1. The critical examination of historical sources (reading history).
  2. The creation and communication of personal interpretations of historical problems (writing history).
  3. The independent analysis of the ideas of other students and the instructor in class and in seminar sessions (discussing history). HIST 2230 The History of Education in the Western World Since 1500
  4. At the conclusion of this course students will be able to discuss, interpret and analyse the following:
         a) approaches to the study of the history of education
         b) relationships between education, social change, and culture
         c) contributions to education by significant groups in history
         d) individuals in history whose contributions affect current education

course prerequisites

One 1000-level Arts course

curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.

noticecurriculum notice

There is an upcoming curriculum change scheduled for .
View upcoming changes