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Title: Boxed Vision: An Investigation on CHED’s General Education Curriculum and its impact on the academic freedom of higher learning institutions

Abstract: This investigative study analyzed the two general education curricula ordered by the Commission on Higher Education and how the imposing of a general education curriculum (GEC) affects the academic freedom of higher learning institutions (HLIs). Given the stir the new GEC made, especially in the case of removing Filipino in the list of required subjects, this study aimed to look at how providing a minimum GEC to HLIs affect their academic freedom. This research sought the insights and opinions of experts on the constitutional provision on academic freedom and inquired from several members of the academe on their perception of academic freedom, as well as conducted a deep search of relevant paper trails like CHED Memorandum Orders, court rulings, and court petitions. This study discovered two things: first, institutions of higher learning act in accordance to the theory on academic capitalism which means that they, as much as possible, shape their curricula based on the required minimum to cater to the needs of the globalizing community, above all else; and second, faculty heads view academic freedom of the institution to determine for itself what to teach as second only to the need of the country for an imposed minimum standard on a general education from a government institution given that the education system needs to catch up with the fast-developing world.

Keywords: Academic freedom, Tertiary Education, General Education, Curriculum

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