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1 hour ago, Fretful Mother said:

Meanwhile...

...my son just declined a secure MA offer from Cambridge. Doesn't want to go this year because the experience on offer is not what he applied for, pre-COVID.

I wonder how applications are going for other Unis?

Physical or online

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47 minutes ago, shlomo said:

Physical or online

Applications for physical, stting-in-the-same-room courses vs courses taught fully online?

I'd imagine courses taught fully online are unaffected by COVID. Courses where the location, the networking, the beers, the music and the possibility of meeting life-long friends do not sound as much fun at a social distance. He's reluctant to pay the full price for an important, interconnected thing that's no longer on offer and yes, his course was "physical". I admire his resolve and for waiting for what he wants.

I suppose if he's decided not to go then people like him will also have decided not to go. I'm certain that Cambridge don't care either way. I'm just wondering how other Unis are coping with a drop in applications.

Edited by Fretful Mother
apologies, my reply lacked clarity
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22 minutes ago, Fretful Mother said:

I'm just wondering how other Unis are coping with a drop in applications.

I'm hoping Unis reduce their fees (and salaries).

Faint hope I guess.

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31 minutes ago, Fretful Mother said:

Applications for physical, stting-in-the-same-room courses vs courses taught fully online?

I'd imagine courses taught fully online are unaffected by COVID. Courses where the location, the networking, the beers, the music and the possibility of meeting life-long friends do not sound as much fun at a social distance. He's reluctant to pay the full price for an important, interconnected thing that's no longer on offer and yes, his course was "physical". I admire his resolve and for waiting for what he wants.

I suppose if he's decided not to go then people like him will also have decided not to go. I'm certain that Cambridge don't care either way. I'm just wondering how other Unis are coping with a drop in applications.

The only risk he now has, is if next year there are all the applicants for next year, plus 25% of this year, competition for places will be higher and he may not get in as it's fairly competitive in the first place. Now clearly if he got into Cambridge, he can probably have his pick of the non-Oxbridge Russel Group next year. And those who drop previous offers might not be looked on favourably.

Also, something which interests me, is the students who are planning to defer, what are they going to do for a year? Travel is likely out and jobs are hard to come by. Most Universities seem to be being reasonably pragmatic, tutorials and labs in person, lectures online until Christmas. Potentially giving up having Cambs on his CV for the next 40 years over this is a risk.

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27 minutes ago, Killer Bunny said:

I'm hoping Unis reduce their fees (and salaries).

Faint hope I guess.

I know some old uni academics and some, basically, lecturers in FE colleges delivering degrees or degree units.

The uni academics I know think tuition fees need to be higher to cover all their costs.

The lecturers in college that deliver degrees etc consider HE fees a cash cow. The latter take lower salaries, but admittedly they don't have PhDs and 3 foot long academic résumés.

 

Edited by Si1
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3 hours ago, Fretful Mother said:

Meanwhile...

...my son just declined a secure MA offer from Cambridge. Doesn't want to go this year because the experience on offer is not what he applied for, pre-COVID.

I wonder how applications are going for other Unis?

Overseas, particularly postgraduate bearing up, i teach a course which has 90 overseas MSc students, last year there were 45, 90 was nuts crazy work load. Next year applications look like 60 odd already (extrapolating) despite CV19 we are being told told this is disastrous, seems strange it is 30% more than 2 years ago. The universities managment are behaving like they have not the faintest idea what to do and no-one wants to risk getting the blame for anything that goes wrong, given they are on 6 figure salaries, i was hoping for some leadership.

Edited by debtlessmanc
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5 minutes ago, debtlessmanc said:

 no-one wants to risk getting the blame for anything that goes wrong

 

It often takes a blame shifting approach to get that promotion in the first place

Quote

 

given they are on 6 figure salaries, i was hoping for some leadership.

 

Edited by Si1
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1 minute ago, Si1 said:

It often takes a blame shifting approach to get that promotion on the first place

 

I think they have splurging money on buildings and eg business relations administrators (business relation are all about acacdemic relationships with individual administrators -i spend half my life trying to keeps these idiots away from my collaborators) and their own pay. They now are facing having to cut staff and, of course they, cannot cut people who actually teach the students as that would be the end of the university. So the threat is now existential to them (my guess).

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1 minute ago, debtlessmanc said:

I think they have splurging money on buildings and eg business relations administrators (business relation are all about acacdemic relationships with individual administrators -i spend half my life trying to keeps these idiots away from my collaborators) and their own pay. They now are facing having to cut staff and, of course they, cannot cut people who actually teach the students as that would be the end of the university. So the threat is now existential to them (my guess).

If there was all that money to splurge then how come junior researchers get such a poor deal these days then?

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10 hours ago, richmondtw said:

At achool at uni i had to listen to bearded idiots or women who wear flat shoes and no make up espousing their left wing views.  

Maybe you should have studied a harder subject. I never heard any of my lecturers' political views, they were too busy talking about biochemistry and molecular biology.

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11 minutes ago, Si1 said:

If there was all that money to splurge then how come junior researchers get such a poor deal these days then?

Most of that is in the arts tbh, in terms of dodgy zero hours stuff. The physical sciences and engineering career path (or lack of it) is pretty much the same as i went through living in a crappy bedsit in the London in the 1990's

Edited by debtlessmanc
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12 hours ago, Dorkins said:

Maybe you should have studied a harder subject. I never heard any of my lecturers' political views, they were too busy talking about biochemistry and molecular biology.

Electrical engineering - is why I have my own business involved in automation and AI old chap.  It is why I was able to sell a previous business for a very nice sum that has enabled me to buy my nice 4 bedroom house in Richmond for cash.  It is also why I do not care if prices go down or up.  We have no mortgage we are not thinking of moving for many many years.

For record none of my own lecturers were bearded buffoons but we used to drink in the same pubs/bars as many of the sandal wearers who were trying to be hip with the students.  

 

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13 hours ago, Dorkins said:

Maybe you should have studied a harder subject. I never heard any of my lecturers' political views, they were too busy talking about biochemistry and molecular biology.

It would appear that your degree has not dome much for you.  Maybe you should have studied a harder subject then you may have been able to buy your own house.  

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14 hours ago, debtlessmanc said:

I think they have splurging money on buildings and eg business relations administrators (business relation are all about acacdemic relationships with individual administrators -i spend half my life trying to keeps these idiots away from my collaborators) and their own pay. They now are facing having to cut staff and, of course they, cannot cut people who actually teach the students as that would be the end of the university. So the threat is now existential to them (my guess).

Oh yes they can. I know of a Russel group humanities department that has told all its teaching staff on 10 month contracts they won't betgetting one next year. I assume academics have been told to do all their teaching (somehow on top of the huge workload they presumably already have!)?

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14 hours ago, Si1 said:

If there was all that money to splurge then how come junior researchers get such a poor deal these days then?

because they don't care about them and they are trivial to replace. Far more people want these jobs than job availability.

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The Open University should be cleaning up here. The education they offer is vastly superior* to that provided from conventional universities. Even the elite institutions can't beat them in terms of syllabus - the Oxbridge advantage is social and tutorial, both of which are currently somewhat limited.

The OU are a bit lefty of course, which may or may not be your thing.

 

*Disclaimer: This is based on my personal experience of five conventional universities and only one OU module, from which I learnt more than from the rest combined.

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1 hour ago, richmondtw said:

Electrical engineering - is why I have my own business involved in automation and AI old chap.  It is why I was able to sell a previous business for a very nice sum that has enabled me to buy my nice 4 bedroom house in Richmond for cash.  It is also why I do not care if prices go down or up.  We have no mortgage we are not thinking of moving for many many years.

For record none of my own lecturers were bearded buffoons but we used to drink in the same pubs/bars as many of the sandal wearers who were trying to be hip with the students.  

 

Hi Happy Guy

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6 minutes ago, Timm said:

The Open University should be cleaning up here. The education they offer is vastly superior* to that provided from conventional universities. Even the elite institutions can't beat them in terms of syllabus - the Oxbridge advantage is social and tutorial, both of which are currently somewhat limited.

The OU are a bit lefty of course, which may or may not be your thing.

 

*Disclaimer: This is based on my personal experience of five conventional universities and only one OU module, from which I learnt more than from the rest combined.

Am surprised the online / learn at your own pace approach hasn't taken off.  Not heard much from the likes of Kahn Academy etc. Perhaps with all the redundancies and part time jobs, it may grow.  Am interested if the perception of this type of qualification by others is different?

Never went to OxBridge, but know plenty that had.  The so called 'tutorial' system had a fearsome reputation, but apparently it was easy to blag your way through them.  The favourite technique was to have one of you present a half baked analysis and have the others rip into you long enough to use up the time.  Rotate who got the slammed and it evened out the grades.

Would explain how many Government types argue for the sake of it.

 

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20 minutes ago, Timm said:

The Open University should be cleaning up here. The education they offer is vastly superior* to that provided from conventional universities. Even the elite institutions can't beat them in terms of syllabus - the Oxbridge advantage is social and tutorial,

Despite the propaganda some other universities, e.g Manchester offer this. I had weekly tutorials with 3 other students an academic at Manchester. I know many don't though.

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15 hours ago, Tulip_mania said:

The only risk he now has, is if next year there are all the applicants for next year, plus 25% of this year, competition for places will be higher and he may not get in as it's fairly competitive in the first place. Now clearly if he got into Cambridge, he can probably have his pick of the non-Oxbridge Russel Group next year. And those who drop previous offers might not be looked on favourably.

Also, something which interests me, is the students who are planning to defer, what are they going to do for a year? Travel is likely out and jobs are hard to come by. Most Universities seem to be being reasonably pragmatic, tutorials and labs in person, lectures online until Christmas. Potentially giving up having Cambs on his CV for the next 40 years over this is a risk.

Huge risk to decline Cambridge. However, he's worked hard and saved money in order to be able to afford to go. The MA fees and accommodation fees are far more than the maximum Student Grant. It's his money and he's choosing not to spend it because this year he won't be able to access everything that the college and the town usually has to offer. It's only a 9-month course right in the worst time to do a course in over 70 years. Very sad.

This year? He knows he's got to prove he made the right desicion. He's planning on continuing to write film scripts, to do a remote online (properly designed from first principles to be delivered online) course in a related subject and to submit a couple of articles to a journal or two.

I reckon that properly developed online courses will be quite popular this year. Courses hastily shoved through webcams with clueless sound and lighting will not be in demand.

 

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15 hours ago, Killer Bunny said:

I'm hoping Unis reduce their fees (and salaries).

Faint hope I guess.

I agree. This year's fee should be halved or waived. It will encourage applications - even though it won't make a jot of difference to students' overall student debt.

Employed Lecturers are paid quite well. Deans and Vice Chancellors appear to be paid obscene amounts.

https://thetab.com/uk/2020/01/21/see-how-your-uni-vice-chancellors-pay-compares-to-everyone-elses-139325

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41 minutes ago, Timm said:

The Open University should be cleaning up here. The education they offer is vastly superior* to that provided from conventional universities. Even the elite institutions can't beat them in terms of syllabus - the Oxbridge advantage is social and tutorial, both of which are currently somewhat limited.

The OU are a bit lefty of course, which may or may not be your thing.

 

*Disclaimer: This is based on my personal experience of five conventional universities and only one OU module, from which I learnt more than from the rest combined.

The open University is in deep do do's anecdotally. It is seen as the University middle class people who could not/did not make it to when they were 18. Now everyone who wants to goes to Uni, no demand for the OU. Also their reseaech is weak and they suffer from having a wide distribution of sites, some of which have considerable redevelopment value.

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Again, anecdotally, my lecturer sister has been told to expect a 20% drop in applications. She's expecting a 80% drop.

The Uni tells her how well she is delivering online. She points out that she's dealing with a cohort that already know each other and the Uni. A new cohort will not gel easily given social distancing, online lectures and no freshers' events.

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9 minutes ago, debtlessmanc said:

The open University is in deep do do's anecdotally. It is seen as the University middle class people who could not/did not make it to when they were 18. Now everyone who wants to goes to Uni, no demand for the OU. Also their reseaech is weak and they suffer from having a wide distribution of sites, some of which have considerable redevelopment value.

Yes, it's very sad.

Especially as they should be seen as the option for people who want to learn, rather than want to network / get a bit of paper. 

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2 minutes ago, Timm said:

Yes, it's very sad.

Especially as they should be seen as the option for people who want to learn, rather than want to network / get a bit of paper. 

For over £9K per year for fees alone, shouldn't a student expect opportunities to learn as well as to network and get a bit of paper. They needn't be exclusive features of a good education?

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  • 439 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

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