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College IV / Kirkhof College educational resource video tapes

Identifier: GV018-03

Scope and Contents

Series contains educational resource video tapes likely used for College IV / Kirkhof College self-paced learning modules, as well as educational videos produced and circulated through the University Libraries after the dissolution of the college. Other videos in the series document GVSU sporting events, performance art, and other events.


  • 1969 - 2006

Access to the Materials

Collection is open for research use. Materials may be accessed by request at Special Collections and University Archives in Seidman House. Materials do not circulate.

Video tapes require VHS tape player and television to be viewed. Equipment is available for viewing VHS tapes in the archives. Some tapes may be non-VHS formats (U-matic, betamax, etc.) that require specialized equipment or digitization to be viewed. Consult with archives staff for further information.

Historical Notes

College IV opened in 1973 and originally, it was designed to operate with a pedagogical model featuring self-paced instruction, mastery learning, and modular design of a liberal arts curriculum. College IV was renamed Kirkhof College in 1978 after a generous gift from Russell H. Kirkhof.

One of the guiding principles of College IV was to remove some of the barriers that kept people away from higher education. One such barrier was the traditional class in which all students had to attend at specific times during the week and had to progress through the course at the pace set by the professor. To help remove this barrier, College IV centered its curriculum around “learning modules.” A module was a unit of study pertaining to a small but definable portion of a particular course. Grand Valley was on the quarter system at that time and most courses were five-credit courses. At College IV, these courses were divided into a sequence of one-half credit or one-credit modules. Each module contained learning objectives, which stated the expected goals to be achieved by the student, a study guide for the materials used to achieve an understanding of the material, and a self-test for the student to check on her or his understanding of the material. Students would work through the modules on their own but could get individualized instruction with the instructor during designated office hours.

Much of the instruction at College IV involved one student working with the modules and one faculty member. As is stated in Grand Valley catalogs at that time, “College IV has thrown away the lecture platform and class schedule, freed the student and the professor from the drudgery of fact-passing, and engaged them both as partners in the learning process.” In addition, College IV did not use a traditional grading system. When a student completed a module, that student was given a “mastery exam” on the material. If the student demonstrated 90% mastery or better on the exam, credit for the module was given. If a student failed to master the material at the 90% level, he or she was given instructions for re-study of the material and would be allowed to take another form of the master exam.


21.25 Linear feet (17 cartons)

Language of Materials


Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Grand Valley State University Special Collections and University Archives Repository

Seidman House
1 Campus Drive
Allendale MI 49401 United States