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THE WELSH UNIVERSITY, THE REV. HAWKER HUGHES OX THE QUESTION. It will be remembered that a few weeks ago a conference of Welsh Educationists was held at Shrewsbury to discuss the question of establish- ing a Welsh National University. In the confer- ence itself there was much difference of opinion. Some were in favour of including the Theological Colleges and Lampeter in the University, and of making the faculty of theology part of the curri- culum. Most unwisely, in our opinion, however, the majority of those present decided to make the three University Colleges only of Aberystwyth, Cardiff, and Bangor the constituent colleges of the University, Believing that Welshmen would never rest satisfied with such a hasty and ill- advised scheme, we took steps to ascertain the views of leading' Welsh educationists on the ques- tion. Some of these views have already been published iu our columns, most of whom were opposed to the Shrewsbury proposals. Mr. Walter J. Evans, in this month's Welxh-.Ilevuiv, adversely criticises the action of the Conference, and we have this week much pleasure in publishing the views of the Rev. Hawker Hughes, M.A., Fellow and Tutor of Jesus College, Oxford, and one of the keenest of Welsh Educationists. The views of representative men such as Dean Owen and Pro- fessor Ellis Edwards we hope to publish in an early issue. THE REV. HAWKER HUGHES. 1. Should the faculty of Theology be included in the curriculum of the Uni versity ? It is difficult to understand how a University in which Theology is not recognised could reflect the national life of Wales. The opposition to Theological Degrees probably arises from the impression that it is impossible to frame any scheme of examinations to which candidates differ- ing in theological opinions can conscientiously submit. But there is no such impossibility. There is a field in criticism, languages, history, natural religion, and the comparison of religious systems wide enough to absorb the industry of students, and to satisfy the ingenuity of examiners. In fact there is no reason why candidates should not be examined even in the history and nature of dogmas with which they have no sympathy, as they often are examined on systems of Philosophy which they regards as delusions. Dogmas have played so important a part at many periods of European history that it is impossible to under- stand the latter without some knowledge of the former. Of course no preparation for such ex- aminations would be an adequate preparation for the ministry of any particular church, nor is it desirable that it should be so regarded. The sub- jects of such examinations would be ground com- mon to all Christians, and the common pursuit of such studies might go far to dispel sectarian animosities by accentua tfng points of agreement. It would further be undesirable that any mem- ber of the University should be allowed to specialise in Theology or be admitted to Theological exeminations until he has passed two or three ex- aminations in Arts. 2. Should the different denominational colleges be affiliated to the University ? j As the existing University Colleges are pro- hibited by their charters from teaching Theology, the recognition of Theological studies by the University would imply some relationship with the Theological colleges. There will probably be much practical difficulty in determining the pre- cise character of that relationship. Such questions as the following will arise :— Should the Theological Colleges be merely .affiliated to or made an integral part of the University? Should attendance at the lectures of one of the University Colleges be required of members of denominational colleges ? If so. at what period of the undergraduate's career should such attendance be required ? The answer to the two latter ques- tions may depend much upon the extent to which the denominational college are able to meet the requirements of the examination in Arts of the University. Possibly the ideally best solution would be that those who wish to graduate in Theology should begin their course at one of "he University Colleges and complete it at a denomina- tional college. It may be found expedient in time to make arrangements, at the chief university centre, whereby the students will participate in some kind of common life, such as that of an Oxford or Cambridge College. Anyhow, when residence at a University College may imply nothing more than residence (for the sake of cheap- ness) in a remote street in a town where lectures are given by a staff of University professors, attendance at such lectures being the only neces- sary bond of union existing between, or means of intercourse afforded to students, it is much more difficult to demonstrate the advantages of such residence. Still, as it has been decided that mem- bjrship of the Welsh University is to imply more than the qualification given by examinations, and attendance, for a period, at lectures given by the professor of a University College must be insisted on, even in the case of members of denominational colleges, unless, indeed, any such college should be placed entirely on a level with the University Colleges, which can hardly be so long as they re- tain an exclusively theological character. 3. Should the denominational colleges, all or some, be represented on the governing body of the University ? The answer to this question must depend almost entirely upon the settlement arrived at in the case of the preceding question. If the graduates of the University are (as they should be) strongly represented on the governing body, and if theo- logical degrees are instituted, then the denomina- tional colleges will be indirectly represented through their graduate members of the Univer- sity. If the denominational colleges are merely affiliated to the University, probably this will be the only feasible form of representation. Should the denominational colleges, however, or any of them, be made an integral part of the University, they will probably be justified in denouncing something more, In such case the only basis of representation seems to be the number of subjects it professes to teach, as they may all be taught by the same professor nor to the number of its pro- feesors, as they may all teach the same subject.


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