Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS)


Liberal Studies

First Advisor

Sheldon Solomon

Second Advisor

Philip Hardy


Most social scientists recognize the social system as the framework by which society, as a whole, operates. That framework has, as its major components, subsystems known as institutions, which perform the functions necessary for the survival and proliferation of the social system. One of the master institutions Education, is the focus of this paper. Today, it is generally accepted and expected, that education should own the responsibility for the socialization of youth. This includes preparation of young citizens for productive participation in the social system. But what does that mean; and what are the implications of change on its ability to fulfill its mission?

This paper is an interdisciplinary analysis of the American educational process, and an assertion of what the institution of education might do to remain an effectively functioning component in the greater social system.