by MARGARET BRADLEY The origins and foundation of the Ecole Polytechnique A study of archival material in the Ecole Polytechnique, one of the elite schools of French higher education, has revealed library and book supply problems in 1795 which provide some interesting parallels and contrasts with modern problems in higher education. It was in the wake of the French revolution that there first emerged the concept of a university-type education open to all on the basis of a competitive entrance examination with state grants for students. The Ecole Polytechnique by drawing on the best students from all over France and by employing scientists of world class reached an enviably high standard within a few years of its foundation and became the model for polytechnic schools in other countries on the continent and America. This paper focusses on one aspect of the problem of launching a new universitytype institution, that of the support of learning by the supply of books. The French revolution had far-reaching social and educational implications. Education, which under the old regime had been largely in Church hands, now became the concern of the state. In higher education there was fundamental rethinking on the place of
Libri - International Journal of Libraries and Information Services – de Gruyter
Published: Jan 1, 1976
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