Library Journal

This useful two-volume set serves as a worthy complement to Pergamon’s four-volume Encyclopedia of Higher Education (EHE) and Facts On File’s three-volume Encyclopedia of American Education (EAE), now in its second edition.

Instead of attempting to match the international scope of the former or the historical coverage of the latter, editors Forest (political science, United States Military Acad., West Point) and Kinser (educational administration and policy studies, SUNY at Albany) have compiled essays on selected higher education topics of contemporary interest, starting with World War II. The introduction by Philip G. Altbach provides historical perspective for the postwar years, when the American research university became the model for major institutions worldwide. Many of this volume’s 177 entries, such as “Graduate Student Unions,” “Intellectual Property,” and “Retrenchment,” are absent from the other two works. And although those works include more entries overall, the essays here are invariably longer and more thorough.

The GI Bill, for example, gets a three-page write-up here but only three paragraphs in EAE and no entry at all in EHE. The concerns and implications of part-time faculty get four pages here but only a cursory nod from the other two. On the other hand, many topics that should have been included in this encyclopedia are missing e.g., grade inflation and information literacy and dozens of others have variant headings among the three sources e.g., business and finance of higher education, money management, and school funding/ finance that make cross-comparison difficult. Still, this is a solid round-up of key factors in higher education that will be an asset to the reference collection of any large academic or public library.

Will Hepfer, SUNY at Buffalo Libraries

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