Roth Comments on STEM vs. Humanities

Lauren RubensteinAugust 19, 20142min
There's no reason why the humanities and STEM can't get along, says Roth
Michael Roth
Michael Roth

Inside Higher Ed turned to President Michael S. Roth, author of Beyond the University: Why Liberal Education Mattersto comment on a new study finding that “College students, on the whole, earn more credits in the humanities than in STEM, even though science majors outnumber humanities majors.” The researchers found that at many colleges and universities, general education requirements draw many non-majors to humanities courses. But at Wesleyan, which has no such requirements, officials have found that “people in STEM fulfill the expectation to take courses across the curriculum more regularly than the humanities people do,” Roth said.

He defended Wesleyan’s open curriculum: “You shouldn’t have to require people to expand their intellectual horizons,” he said. “You should be able to entice them to do so. Show them why it’s worth their while. When you have to require it, it demeans the enterprise.”

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