Mellon Research Forum on the Value of the Liberal Arts: Grant-funded Research

December 2016: A grant to Harvard University to support Howard Gardner’s empirical investigation on “Liberal Arts and Sciences in the 21st Century” (LAS21), which studies the effects of a liberal arts education on students on eleven different campuses

August 2017, April 2018, and June 2018: Grants to Columbia University to support research by the Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory & Empirics (INCITE) toward a multi-dimensional measure of the degree to which American colleges and universities offer a liberal arts education.  

September 2017: A grant to Stanford University to support a research study on purpose as a key outcome of students’ engagement with a liberal arts education.

September 2017: A grant to the University of California at Santa Barbara to support a topic modeling study of publications that reveal how people have thought and spoken about liberal arts education and the humanities since the 1980s.

December 2017: A grant to Columbia University to support The Community College Research Center at Teachers College in its study of how exposure to the humanities and liberal arts in community colleges affects student progress towards transfer and a bachelor’s degree.  

March and August 2018: Grants to the University of Michigan to support preliminary work towards an effort to develop a large, multi-institutional dataset that will facilitate the study of the impact of a liberal arts education on a broad set of student outcomes.

June 2018: A grant to the University of California at Irvine to establish a national Working Group to propose recommendations for the future of liberal arts education across a wide range of institutional types, and for the set of liberal arts literacies that should be expected of students for employability and citizenship in the 21st century.

September 2018: A grant to the University of California at Irvine that will enable the UC Irvine School of Education to develop and implement a state-of-the-art measurement project to improve our understanding of the value of liberal arts educational experiences and to promote evidence-based models of undergraduate student success.  

September 2018: A grant to Ithaka S&R tosupport research that will look at features of liberal arts education that contribute to student success, and study whether those features can be offered in institutional contexts where they are not normally offered.

December 2018: A grant to the University of Michigan that will enable the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) to support the launch of College and Beyond II, a data-gathering initiative concerning outcomes of liberal arts education across a wide range of colleges and universities.

December 2018: A grant to the University of Wisconsin–Madison to support the expansion and ongoing evaluation of the Discussion Project, a new professional development program designed to teach higher education instructors how to create and facilitate high-quality discussions in their classrooms.