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REVIEWS REVIEWED

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

In its own eyes, doubtless, the vote of the Union Committee to give up mid-year reviews was wise. Last year the Freshmen found them largely useless, and a few instructors who took great pains to prepare for the reviews faced non-existent audiences. Several courses in Physics and other fields having joined the group which give summaries in class, and some professors like Holcombe in Government 1 deciding that a three hour session is futile, the proponents of the scheme had to talk in an atmosphere of failure. Only extremely hard work by members of last year's Committee made the reviews possible, and at this late date the idea just did not seem to be worth the exertion. All the same, the process of thought which lay behind the adverse vote must have been a curious one.

Reviews are just as necessary this year as they were last. Only in a few less courses are the new men puzzled by masses of reading, novel styles of teaching, and intricate disorganization of material. That the first try to beat these obstacles without resort to the tutoring schools was a failure is no proof that a solution cannot be had. The prosperity of certain institutions along Massachusetts Avenue shows that reviews can be made so effective and valuable that men will pay large amounts of money to get them. True enough last years half-cocked attempts came nowhere near the professional standards, but there is faith in many that time and experience could bring the College's teachers to the same level as their rivals. Conceivably the Union Committee might not have been disheartened by past ill luck but aroused to greater efforts to fill the gap they knew exists.

In its larger aspects the step is definitely retrogressive. Tutoring schools grow fat on the widespread feeling in the college that courses are badly managed and the teachers indifferent to the difficulties of the student. By saying that University Hall wanted to and could take care of its own, the Union reviews hit right back at Massachusetts Avenue and if for no other reason than that they directed attention to internal reform of the administration they should have been continued. Proposing to take a poll on the subject before the final exams, the Committee indicates that the door is not shut, that it is alive to the principle at stake.

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