Education: A Century of Progress

How deeply should U.S. high school students plumb the awful mysteries of language and mathematics? Last week two education magazines by happenstance compared the standards of a century ago and now.

In the Amherst Alumni News, President Calvin H. Plimpton quoted Amherst's application requirements for 1860: "Candidates for admission to the Freshman Class are examined in the grammar of the Latin and Greek languages, Virgil, Cicero's Select Orations, and Sallust or Caesar's Commentaries, Arnold's Latin Prose Composition, eight chapters; Xenophon's Anabasis and two books of Homer's Iliad; English Grammar, Arithmetic, Algebra to Quadratic Equations, and two books of Loomis' Geometry or of...

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