Academic specialization

In academia, specialization (or specialisation) may be a course of study or major at an academic institution or may refer to the field in which a specialist practices. In the case of an educator, academic specialization pertains to the subject that he specializes in and teaches.[1] It is considered a precondition of objective truth and works by restricting the mind's propensity for eclecticism through methodological rigor and studious effort.[2] It is also employed as an information-management strategy, which operates by fragmenting an issue into different aspective fields or areas of expertise to obtain truth.[2]


As the volume of knowledge accumulated by humanity became too great, increasing specialization in academia appeared in response.[3] There are also cases when this concept emerged from state policy-making to pursue goals such as national competitiveness. For instance, there is the case of Britain who began coordinating academic specialization - through the founding of the Imperial College - to catch up to the United States and Germany, particularly in the fields of scientific and technical education.[4]

Further reading

  • Crichton, Danny. "Adventures in Academia: The Dangers of (Over)Specialization". Stanford Daily. Retrieved 2017-03-04.


  1. Kytle, Jackson (2012). To Want to Learn: Insights and Provocations for Engaged Learning, 2nd ed. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. p. 120. ISBN 9780230338203.
  2. Davies, Martin (2006). Historics: Why History Dominates Contemporary Society. New York: Routledge. p. 168. ISBN 0415261651.
  3. Yale Forest School News, Volumes 77-78. Yale Forestry Alumni Assn. 1990. p. 5.
  4. Feingold, Mordechai (2003). History of Universities: Volume XVIII/1 2003, Volume 18. Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. 124. ISBN 0199262020.
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