A definitely better and more flexible arrangement of course requirements is expressed in the adoption of a new nomenclature and altered demands by the English Department. Like the History Department, it has renumbered its basic courses upon a somewhat more sane system than the usual football-signal confusion, an advantage so evident that it is strange not to find it carried through in other departments, especially those of literature.
In matters related to the English Department alone there is likewise improvement, from the student's viewpoint. The successor of English D will no longer be a requirement for those falling in the successor of English A, and I will count, as it should, for a degree. But it is unfortunate that the authorities find it still necessary to continue the first half of English A under any name as a requirement. Only men coming to college with an extremely poor foundation can get a return out of the labors of the first part of the course at all proportionate to its demands in effort and time. Its presence as an extra course among the other difficulties of the Freshman year makes it doubly burdensome. The changes it has undergone have limited and tried to tighten its sagging structure; but its usefulness, always dubious, has about disappeared: and its improved and specialized second part should offer sufficient elementary instruction to any man whose other work proves him intelligent enough to enter Harvard.