Karl W. Bigelow Collection
After completing his doctoral work in Economics at Harvard in 1929, Dr. Bigelow was instructor in economics at Cornell & Harvard Universities and Radcliffe College, and then Professor of Economics and Director of tutorial instruction at the University of Buffalo. His part-time service as Headmaster of the Park School in Buffalo, New York led to his appointment as Chairman of the Committee on the Social Studies in General Education of the Commission on Secondary School Curriculum of the Progressive Education Association.
Dr. Bigelow arrived at Teachers College, Columbia University in 1936 as Professor of Education. Soon after he was granted leave to serve as a consultant to the General Education Board, and then as Director of the Commission on Teacher Education of the American Council on Education, which he did until 1944. Upon his return to Teachers College in 1945, Professor Bigelow specialized in the administration of colleges and universities, and was later designated as Professor of Higher Education, becoming Emeritus Professor in 1963.
After WWII, Professor Bigelow became intimately involved in the work of the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Dr. Bigelow conducted in 1948 the first UNESCO Seminar on the Education and Training of Teachers, was for six years a member of the United States National Commission for UNESCO, and later was an alternate member of the governing board of the UNESCO Institute for Education in Hamburg, Germany. He also served as the American member of the Editorial Board of the UNESCO sponsored journal International Review of Education.
With a 1949 Teachers College conference, Professor Bigelow began a life-long interest in African and African-American Education, studying the higher education systems in the Sudan, Uganda, Kenya, Ghana, and Nigeria among others. By 1960 he was the executive officer of the Afro-Anglo-American Program in Teacher Education (AAA), and from that time forward devoted himself entirely to African education.
Dr. Bigelow produced many works during his career, and was author or co-author of the following: a chapter on economics in History and Prospects of the Social Sciences (1925), A Manual of Thesis-Writing (1934), General Education in the American College (1939), The Social Sciences in General Education (1940), Teachers for Our Times (1944), The Improvement of Teacher Education (1946), and The Education of Teachers in England, France, and U.S.A. (1953), and Education and Foreign Aid (1965).
Karl W. Bigelow Faculty File
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