Lower Division Records, 1929-1951  PDF  XML

Overview of the Collection

Creator
Oregon State College. Lower Division.
Title
Lower Division Records
Dates
1929-1951 (inclusive)
1931-1933 (bulk)
Quantity
0.16 cubic foot, (1 box)
1 microfilm reel, (20 linear feet)
Collection Number
RG 119
Summary
The Lower Division Records contain correspondence, meeting minutes and notes, and reports that document the organization and establishment of a Lower Division curriculum at Oregon Agricultural College. A portion of the records were assembled by Mahlon Ellwood Smith, Dean of the Lower Division from 1932 until his retirement in 1949.
Repository
Oregon State University Libraries, Special Collections and Archives Research Center
Special Collections and Archives Research Center
121 The Valley Library
Oregon State University
Corvallis OR
97331-4501
Telephone: 541-737-2075
Fax: 541-737-8674
scarc@oregonstate.edu
Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Languages
English


Historical NoteReturn to Top

In 1931, it was proposed that all students, those completing liberal arts degrees and those completing technical degrees, would have a common freshmen and sophomore year curriculum known as the Lower Division. This proposal was part of a larger attempt to organize and unify the public higher education system in Oregon in order to limit the challenges faced by students transferring between universities or from a junior college. Establishment of a Lower Division curriculum was not initially supported by many Deans at Oregon Agricultural College (OAC). They stated that it would disrupt the four-year timeline that had already been established for the completion of most technical degrees offered at OAC.

A number of suggestions were made by OAC faculty in order to improve upon the initial proposal. Notably, Dean M. Ellwood Smith of the School of Basic Arts and Sciences and later Dean of the Lower Division, theorized that Lower Division curricula could be integrated throughout the four years of schooling received by students rather than being required in the first two years.

By 1932 the Lower Division was established with M. Ellwood Smith acting as Dean. The majority of the college's administration and faculty had acknowledged that requiring Lower Division curricula as a part of every student's education would not disrupt the curriculum already in place within each School.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The Lower Division Records document the reorganization of Oregon higher education in the early 1930s, specifically the establishment of Lower Division curricula for all students completing degrees at Oregon Agricultural College. The records describe the initial proposal as well as responses and reports produced by the Deans of the college concerning it. The materials include correspondence, meeting minutes and notes, research, studies, and reports, including the 1942-1944 biennial report describing the activities of the Lower Division, especially pertaining to the Army Specialized Training Program. The collection also contains correspondence pertaining to and with a number of Lower Division faculty, several of which were instructors in the Army Specialized Training Program during the war years.

A portion of the records were created and assembled by Mahlon Ellwood Smith, Dean of the Lower Division from its establishment in 1932 until his retirement in 1949.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Preferred Citation

Lower Division Records (RG 119), Oregon State University Special Collections & Archives Research Center, Corvallis, Oregon.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Arrangement

The Lower Division Records are arranged in 5 series: I. Lower Division Organization, 1929-1947; II. Meeting Minutes, 1940; III. Program Establishment Records, 1931; IV. Biennial Report, 1944; and V. Lower Division Faculty Correspondence, 1944-1951.

Acquisition Information

The microfilmed materials were received in the 1960s by the University Archives. The bulk of the paper records were transferred from the Memorabilia Collection in 1991; a small addition was transferred from the History Department in 1995.

Related Materials

Additional materials related to Dean Smith can be found in the M. Ellwood Smith Papers and the Memorabilia Collection. Additional information pertaining to the Lower Division can be found in the President's Office Records of William Jasper Kerr (RG 013 - SG 07). The Dean of Undergraduate Studies Records (RG 113) provide information about general education at Oregon State beginning in the 1970s.


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Reel
1 Series I: Lower Division Organization
Series I consists of microfilmed materials prepared or assembled by M. Ellwood Smith, Dean of the School of Basic Arts and Sciences, pertaining to the organization and establishment of a Lower Division curriculum at Oregon Agricultural College (OAC). It contains regulations governing the operations of interinstitutional deans and directors in the fields of minor work at OAC and the University of Oregon; multiple studies pertaining to Lower Division organization as well as procedures for its establishment at other universities; and correspondence between Dean M. Ellwood Smith and individuals and organizations, including Registrar E. B. Lemon, President W. J. Kerr and the Administrative Council, regarding the reorganization of the Lower Division. The bulk of the materials were created in 1932-1933. The series also includes later correspondence regarding Lower Division summer session classes and other Lower Division matters.
1929-1947
1 Series II: Meeting Minutes
Series II consists of microfilmed minutes documenting a meeting about the general controversy between the University of Oregon and Oregon State College relative to courses taught in the Lower Division at each school as well as reference to the entire controversy.
1940
Box
1 Series III: Program Establishment Records
Series III consists of memos, correspondence, and reports pertaining to the proposal for establishment of Lower Division curricula at Oregon Agricultural College. The collection contains reports and correspondence produced by Dean Peavy of the School of Forestry, Dean Hance of the School of Mines, Dean Milam of the School of Home Economics, Dean Ziefle of the School of Pharmacy, Dean Rogers of the School of Engineering and Dean Smith of the School of Basic Arts and Sciences describing the effect that a requirement of Lower Division curricula would have on existing curricula as well as the logistics of organizing Lower Division curricula at OAC. It also contains notes from Board of Higher Education meetings, documents describing credit requirements at OAC and contemporary universities, budgetary and general information related to the activities and administrative organization of a number of the Schools at OAC, and memos and reports pertaining to the effectiveness of training received by graduates of the College in a number of fields.
1931
1 Series IV: Biennial Report for 1942-1944
Series IV consists of a biennial report describing the activities of the Lower Division of Liberal Arts and Sciences in the Oregon State System of Higher Education in the 1942-1944 biennium. The bulk of the report discusses the Army Specialized Training Program.
1944
1 Series V: Lower Division Faculty Correspondence
Series V consists of correspondence with and pertaining to the following Lower Division faculty: Ramona E. Berry, Lulu Garrett, A. Grajdanzev, Boyd F. Huff, Rolf W. Ordal, Clarence C. Hulley, Wentworth S. Morris, Sidney Phillips, and Lawrence Tyler. Several of these faculty were instructors in the Army Specialized Training Program during the war years.
1944-1951

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Education, Higher--Oregon.
  • Military education--Oregon--Corvallis.
  • Universities and colleges--Curricula--Oregon--Corvallis.
  • Universities and colleges--Oregon--Corvallis--Administration.
  • World War, 1939-1945--War work--Schools.

Corporate Names

  • Oregon Agricultural College--Curricula.
  • Oregon Agricultural College--Faculty.
  • Oregon State College--Curricula.
  • Oregon State College--Faculty.

Other Creators

  • Personal Names
    • Smith, Mahlon Ellwood, 1884- (creator)
    Corporate Names
    • Oregon Agricultural College. Lower Division. (creator)