Brooks, David. This is How Scandinavia Got Great. The New York Times, Feb. 16, 2020. Almost everybody admires the Nordic Model. Countries like Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland have high economic productivity, high social equality, high social trust and high levels of personal happiness.
Bok, Derek. Higher Education in America. Princeton, 2013. Overview of the enterprise, with Part II focused on undergraduate education and a useful final section on current problems undermining higher ed.
Bok, Derek. Our Underachieving Colleges. Princeton, 2006. Explores the changing meaning of “liberal education,” and makes the case for reform on the basis of skills such as critical thinking, moral reasoning, living in a more global society, etc.
Chopp, Rebecca, Susan Frost, Daniel H. Weiss. Remaking College: Innovation and the Liberal Arts. Johns Hopkins, 2014. Anthology mostly directed to liberal arts college leaders.
Delbanco, Andrew. College: What It Was, Is, and Should Be. Princeton, 2012. Traces the origins of higher education in the United States to religious roots. In a wide-ranging discursive essay,he argues that colleges have lost a sense of higher purpose. One exception may be the commitment to the ideal of preparing students to live in a democracy.
Gutmann, Amy. “What Makes a University Education Worthwhile?” in The Aims of Higher Education: Problems of Morality and Justice, eds. Harry Brighouse and Michael McPherson. Chicago, 2015. Previously published in Carnegie Reporter 7, No. 3 (Winter 2014).
Menand, Louis. The Marketplace of Ideas. W.W. Norton, 2010. How the history of American higher education created the dilemmas we face in general education and liberal arts.
Roth, Michael S. Beyond the University: Why Liberal Education Matters, Yale, 2014. Series of historical lectures with a recap of current controversies.
Zakaria, Fareed. In Defense of a Liberal Education. Norton, 2016. Personal history.