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AustinCBrown
09-09-2008, 05:40 PM
Hey all,

I'm been roaming the internet/library books for a couple of days trying to find something that tells me the normal time frame for completing undergraduate and graduate degrees at, say, Oxford or Cambridge during the 18th century. I'm not having very good luck.

So here I am.

Suppose a man in 18th century England wanted to advance through the ranks up to obtaining the status "fellow," what would that look like as far as time spent within the halls of acedemia? In other words, this man wants to become a professor.

I have gathered that there were B.A. degrees, but what about graduate degrees? Masters degrees? Doctorates? How long to accomplish these? What's involved?

Anything would be helpful!

Thanks,

Austin

Mike Martyn
09-09-2008, 07:15 PM
St. Andrews University in Scotland has been around for about 600 years. Google them and maybe get in touch with one of their librarians. My grandfather graduated from there in 1912. Just in tume for WWI, poor bugger.

In 1865, great grandpa got his medical degree which took 2 years. It will take my son six years to get his.

AustinCBrown
09-09-2008, 07:20 PM
Good idea. Get it right from the horses mouth.

Two years for a medical degree? Huh. Times have changed.

Thanks,

Austin

IceCreamEmpress
09-09-2008, 08:31 PM
Have you found a copy of this book (http://yalepress.yale.edu/yupbooks/book.asp?isbn=9780300068139)? If your library can get it for you on Inter-Library Loan, it will answer all your questions.

FinbarReilly
09-09-2008, 08:31 PM
Lot less to learn back then....

FR

Ms Hollands
09-09-2008, 08:48 PM
Huh. I was just in Cambridge on the weekend. I lived there for almost four years. This is not a helpful post. Erm, I think PhDs have been around for quite a long time. Does that make it more helpful?

If you live in the UK, go to some of these red brick universities and take one of the many tours offered through colleges, punting (for those on rivers such as Oxford and Cambridge), and town. And if you don't, books are you friend I guess.

AustinCBrown
09-09-2008, 08:53 PM
IcreCreamExpress:

Ahhhh, now that's what I'm looking for. Excellent. Thank you!


April:

I'd love to go on a tour, but alas, $$$ + distance = :-(

Cheers,

Austin

Ms Hollands
09-09-2008, 09:25 PM
Ahh....go virtual?

http://www.tourist-tracks.com/

Evaine
09-10-2008, 12:00 AM
I have a feeling that St Andrews is older than Oxford, and Oxford is certainly older than Cambridge. In the 18thC, I'm pretty sure that you had to be an ordained priest of the Church of England in order to become a Fellow of the college - Lewis Carroll/Charles Dodgeson was ordained, though he never had a parish - and he wasn't invited to preach until he became famous for Alice (possibly because he wasn't very good at it).
Members of any other church than the Church of England couldn't become students at Oxford or Cambridge, which meant that they couldn't be educated to degree standard at all.

Mike Martyn
09-10-2008, 12:44 AM
I have a feeling that St Andrews is older than Oxford, and Oxford is certainly older than Cambridge. In the 18thC, I'm pretty sure that you had to be an ordained priest of the Church of England in order to become a Fellow of the college - Lewis Carroll/Charles Dodgeson was ordained, though he never had a parish - and he wasn't invited to preach until he became famous for Alice (possibly because he wasn't very good at it).
Members of any other church than the Church of England couldn't become students at Oxford or Cambridge, which meant that they couldn't be educated to degree standard at all.

The same applied in Canada. In 1863, my great grand father had to take confirmation in the Anglican church before he could get admited to the university of Toronto. he would have 26 at the time. I still have his notebook from his conformation class.

Me, I got tossed out of confirmation class when I was 13 for suggesting to Father Sargeant that there was more evidence as to the existance of dinosaurs than there was to Jesus. Fortunately for me, you no longer need to be an Anglican to be admitted to university :)

AustinCBrown
09-10-2008, 02:57 AM
April: Well, look at that. Didn't know they had those. Cool. Thanks.

Mike and Evaine: From what I have read, it does in fact appear that many of the fellows and such were part of the clergy. However, one book stated that not all had to be ordained... but that was the early 19th century. You may be right about the 18th century.

I need to get my hands on that book Icecreamexpress recommended. That should answer all my questions.

But again, thanks all.

Austin

Higgins
09-10-2008, 08:35 PM
I have a feeling that St Andrews is older than Oxford, and Oxford is certainly older than Cambridge. In the 18thC, I'm pretty sure that you had to be an ordained priest of the Church of England in order to become a Fellow of the college - Lewis Carroll/Charles Dodgeson was ordained, though he never had a parish - and he wasn't invited to preach until he became famous for Alice (possibly because he wasn't very good at it).
Members of any other church than the Church of England couldn't become students at Oxford or Cambridge, which meant that they couldn't be educated to degree standard at all.

I believe you could not marry if you were a fellow. Buckland the geologist was ordained and taught at Oxford in the 1830s. He decided to marry his geological assistant. So he had to be saved from relative poverty by some other appointment to replace his fellowship. You could be a married Anglican priest, but you could not be a married fellow.
Dodgson was a mathematician and never married despite or because of his rather excessive fondness for very young girls.
Degree standards were not particularly high, especially in the 18th century, so the non-conformists were not necessarily missing out on much at Oxford and Cambridge. See Joseph Priestly for example:

http://www.adherents.com/people/pp/Joseph_Priestley.html

waylander
09-10-2008, 10:32 PM
I have a feeling that St Andrews is older than Oxford, and Oxford is certainly older than Cambridge. In the 18thC, I'm pretty sure that you had to be an ordained priest of the Church of England in order to become a Fellow of the college - Lewis Carroll/Charles Dodgeson was ordained, though he never had a parish - and he wasn't invited to preach until he became famous for Alice (possibly because he wasn't very good at it).
Members of any other church than the Church of England couldn't become students at Oxford or Cambridge, which meant that they couldn't be educated to degree standard at all.

St Andrews was founded in 1413 which makes it the oldest in Scotland
Cambridge was founded in 1207

Shakesbear
09-12-2008, 10:55 AM
I don't think you had to be ordained to attend either Oxford or Cambridge - Byron wasn't when he attended Trinity College Cambridge in 1805.

At both Oxford and Cambridge students read for a BA in what ever subject and after, I think it is a year, they are automatically awarded a MA, without further study. This is because the amount of work demanded for the BA is equal to the amount of work other Universities demand for a BA and MA. The time frame may have varied but I think it was between three to four years. It depends on which college and what was being studied and how the student was funded.

Students had to be Church of England - all other religions and Christian denominations were not allowed to study at any English University. This did not change until the Catholic Emancipation Bill of 1828 (?) and the Jewish Disabilities Bill (1859) were passed by Parliament.

Shakesbear
09-12-2008, 11:09 AM
Opps! Date of the Jewish Disabilities Bill is 1858 not 1830.

waylander
09-12-2008, 01:39 PM
I don't think you had to be ordained to attend either Oxford or Cambridge - Byron wasn't when he attended Trinity College Cambridge in 1805.

At both Oxford and Cambridge students read for a BA in what ever subject and after, I think it is a year, they are automatically awarded a MA, without further study. This is because the amount of work demanded for the BA is equal to the amount of work other Universities demand for a BA and MA. The time frame may have varied but I think it was between three to four years. It depends on which college and what was being studied and how the student was funded.

Students had to be Church of England - all other religions and Christian denominations were not allowed to study at any English University. This did not change until the Catholic Emancipation Bill of 1828 (?) and the Jewish Disabilities Bill (1859) were passed by Parliament.

I think you may have had to be ordained to become a fellow back then though