The social and cultural life in England has seen some major changes over the course of its history. Particularly, the ways in which universities affected the society were altered. In the medieval era, religion and the church defined the ideas and philosophies that were accepted and strictly followed by the society. Therefore, the academic setting of medieval England could also be described as highly dependent on the church and the philosophy that it encouraged.
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However, the following secularization took its toll on the academic environment. With the alterations in the state philosophies and priorities, the usefulness of universities has grown. Providing the foundation for the progress, universities have spurred the economic growth of the state, therefore, prompting a significant change.
Nowadays, several elements of the English universities bear a distinct connection to the medieval times. For instance, the idea of higher education being a chance to enter an entirely new world that gives a chance to learn and research persists in English universities. However, the sense of purpose that universities have gained since then is quite new. The focus on research and exploration of new areas opens new horizons for students and teachers. Thus, scientific progress has become a possibility.