I’m reading Reading Victorian Schoolrooms: Childhood Education in Nineteenth Century Fiction by Elizabeth Gargano as an example of the methodological application of novels into social matters such as education policy.
The collection of books below are the novels that Gargano makes reference to in the opening of her book. Although they discuss schools rather than universities, they nonetheless describe some of the more general changes into education in the Nineteenth Century. These themes emerge to be the inspective gaze of the teacher, the complex relationship between school / home life. The processes of standardizing education, and the urge towards efficiency.
Interestingly, the only wholly positive fictional portrayal of schooling on this list is Evelyn Sharp’s The Making of a Schoolgirl – an account of female education in a domestic environment.