Minium, Edward W. (1917-2004)

Minium, Edward W. (1917-2004)

Date Updated




Academic Rank


Year Retired from SJSU


Educational Background

University of California, Berkeley, 1951 Ph.D

Stanford University, 1939 AB

Teaching Experience

San Jose State University, 1948-1982 (Psychology Dept. Chair, 1961‑1966)

Administrative and Professional Experience

Associate, Pacific Coast Consultants, 1955‑1960.

Selected Publications

Minium, Edward W., Statistical Reasoning in Psychology and Education, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., New York, NY. 1st ed.: 1970; 2nd ed.: 1978; 3rd ed.: 1993 (with Bruce M. King and Gordon Bear).

Minium, Edward W. and Clarke, Robert B., Elements of Statistical Reasoning, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., New York, 1982.

Personal Commentary

Nineteen forty‑eight to 1982‑‑what an exciting time to be involved in a teaching career at San Jose State! Less than 15 years before my arrival, SJSU had changed from a state teachers' college to a state college, and in the year I arrived it became possible for a student to earn a masters degree in a subject matter field. Of course, that was only permitted if the student also secured a teaching credential. That didn't hold the Psychology Department back very much, because it required little beyond our regular major to qualify for the School Psychometrist or School Psychologist's credential. On the one hand we had an excellent school psychologist training program, and on the other hand we educated many who aspired either to work as an applied psychologist or to develop a career in academic psychology. A memorable example of the latter is James McGaugh, a distinguished professor at the University of California at Irvine and formerly President of the American Psychological Society. I remember him as a great student, a good friend, and a person with a foot of clay: as an undergraduate he just could not get to his 1‑unit 7:30 a.m. Human Performance (!) bowling class, and was awarded an F.

Before World War II, we were a school of 4,000 or less. I recall that in my first year, we told Sacramento (we were under the State Board of Education then) that with all the GI's coming back to school we should have funds to handle 6,000 students. Sacramento put us in our place, telling us quite firmly that we would never have 6,000 students. What prescience!

Ah, the days of growth! When I arrived in 1948, it was to join the Department of Psychology, Philosophy, and Statistics. Philosophers numbered one (Elmo Robinson), and at that time Arturo Fallico was added, making two. On last count, the (now separate) Philosophy Department numbered over 20. That year 8 psychologists were added, almost doubling our staff. And when I became Department Chair in 1961, psychologists numbered about 28 full‑time equivalent positions (two half‑timers equal one FTE, as they were called). When my stint was completed in 1966, we had about 43 FTE positions.

On a personal note, I feel lucky to have developed a lifelong career at San Jose State. I have always liked and appreciated the science of psychology, but there's just enough ham in me that permitted doing successfully what I really enjoyed: teaching.

Completed: 9/96

Adapted from: Biographies of Retired Faculty San Jose State University 1997: A Project of the Emeritus Faculty Association of San Jose State University. San Jose, CA: The University, 1997.


Minium, Edward W. (1917-2004)