House Course Plan Gains the Approval Of Faculty Council

The Faculty Council yesterday placed a proposal for expanding the House course program on the May 21 Faculty meeting docket thereby giving the plan its implicit endorsement.

The plan, authored by Robert J. Kiely, associate dean of the Faculty for undergraduate education, and proposed to the Faculty by the Committee on Undergraduate Education, recommends that each House offer from three to six half courses a year.

Under the proposal, each House would receive about $5000 a year for the courses, to be spent at the discretion of each House's Committee on Instruction. The courses will be listed as General Education courses, though they will not count towards the basic General Education requirement.

Residents Get Preference

The proposal would equalize the amount of money given to each House, revising the current system which provides for the approval of House courses on case-by-case basis. Houses would still be allowed to give preference to House residents in admission to their courses but all courses would be open to all undergraduates.


The legislation stipulates that each course must be given by someone holding a Harvard teaching appointment.

In placing the proposal on the Faculty docket, the Council disregarded a proposal from Martin H. Peretz, master of South House, that would have allowed non-faculty members to teach House courses by obtaining a special teaching appointment.

Under the plan, Dean Rosovsky would appoint a senior professor from each area--Humanities, Social Sciences and Natural Sciences--to every House's instruction committee. They would serve with the master, senior tutor and other members appointed by the Houses, possibly including students.

Gen. Ed. Jurisdiction

Although the House groups will be responsible for devising courses and finding faculty, final jurisdiction and funding authority will remain with the Committee on General Education. The proposed set of procedures "equalize and formalize a system that in part already exists but is muddy in some people's minds," Kiely said yesterday.

About 35 House courses are now given under present guidelines. The plan, if each House gives its maximum quota, would double that number.

Kiely said that his proposal "adds something new to the curriculum and does not merely duplicate existing courses." He said he foresees the new courses as "stimulating the intellectual life of the Houses" by bringing members of each House's Faculty associates into contact with students