skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 90392 Find in a Library
Title: Origins and Development of University Education at Matsqui Institution
Journal: Canadian Journal of Criminology  Volume:25  Issue:3  Dated:(July 1983)  Pages:295-308
Author(s): S Duguid
Date Published: 1983
Page Count: 14
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: After an outline of the history of post-secondary education at Canada's Matsqui Institution, the theory and curriculum of the program are discussed, and the development of an alternative community at the prison centered in the higher education program is reviewed.
Abstract: During the first 2 years of the program's operation (1973-75), the program retained much of the character of an experiment. Believing that the prison administration was opposed to the continuation of the program, students developed a cohesion that contributed to the quality of the program. Both the prison staff and the inmates came to view the university program as their achievement. The university staff was largely responsible for this, as it maintained its independence from the prison administration without becoming totally identified with the inmates. Based on the belief that cognitive and moral development as well as attitude change are best accomplished by the humanities disciplines, the program focused on English literature and history from the beginning. After a few trial third year courses were offered, funding was secured to mount a regular series of advanced courses. By the end of 1977, the first Bachelor of Arts degree was awarded. By 1981, nine students had earned degrees inside the prison, and several more had completed degrees outside. The program also aimed at establishing an alternative community in the prison centered on the university program. This community would establish rules, customs, and expectations which would provide a forum within which behavior commensurate with more advanced levels of thinking and acting could occur, thus reinforcing the effects of the educational experience. The university community has passed through three stages in its evolution, from paternalism to consultation to a rough form of representative democracy. The Matsqui experience offers at least a potential model for prison education and perhaps for programming in other sectors of the criminal justice system. Thirteen references are provided.
Index Term(s): Canada; Curriculum; Degree programs; Higher education; Inmate academic education; Inmate self-government; Offenders college-credit-programs
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.