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University Bubble Making Hissing Sounds


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I think you're onto something.

The whole idea of 3 year Uni courses made sense when there was scarcity in the lecturers knowledge. With t'internet you can massively condense things.  The first and second year topics are pretty much standard (at least in the Physical Sciences), so lectures can be recorded by engaging and charismatic lecturers.  You follow up with online tutorial sessions to answer questions or go through set problems. 

 

well this is what is being done at most places except that the tutorials are either face to face or online. The idea that you could just have one set of lectures for everyone strikes me as being a bit odd though, in addition to boring, rather totalitarian. Maybe not quite the right word admittedly. Even in the hard sciences there's a role for personality of the teacher and diversity of viewpoints.

Edited by nickb1
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well this is what is being done at most places except that the tutorials are either face to face or online. The idea that you could just have one set of lectures for everyone strikes me as being a bit odd though, in addition to boring, rather totalitarian. Maybe not quite the right word admittedly. Even in the hard sciences there's a role for personality of the teacher and diversity of viewpoints.

That could be a value add.  Having a default lecturer then paying more for a 'celebrity' guest lecturer.  It would certainly make them earn their money

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well this is what is being done at most places except that the tutorials are either face to face or online. The idea that you could just have one set of lectures for everyone strikes me as being a bit odd though, in addition to boring, rather totalitarian. Maybe not quite the right word admittedly. Even in the hard sciences there's a role for personality of the teacher and diversity of viewpoints.

I am not sure I studied hard sciences at uni and there were some really rubbish lectures.  This would have been better.

Also if one professor makes lectures for 100 universities then there are 99 professors who could be spending their time on research and or tuition - sounds great, more research and tutition is great.  

Could do the same for schools and teachers could spend their time helping people who got stuck on the lesson and need help.  

 

Sadly I think the gravy train would continue though

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I am not sure I studied hard sciences at uni and there were some really rubbish lectures.  This would have been better.

Also if one professor makes lectures for 100 universities then there are 99 professors who could be spending their time on research and or tuition - sounds great, more research and tutition is great.  

Could do the same for schools and teachers could spend their time helping people who got stuck on the lesson and need help.  

 

Sadly I think the gravy train would continue though

You really think it's a gravy train? I'm guessing you haven't worked in one, or not recently? The people who gave you crap lectures might have been great at research. Or not... at least now all lecturers have to do some pedagogical training. Not very good because it's a tick box to get HEFCE funding, but something nonetheless.

I thought my supervisor was on a gravy train when I was a PG student. Never had much time for me. Then I saw their timetable. I've met 3 people who worked in the private sector then became lecturers, and each was shocked at the hours they had to put in (wind entrepreneur turned engineering lecturer; pharmacist turned pharmacology lecturer; farmer turned management lecturer). The gravy train if there is one starts higher up, in university management and higher level admin posts, including marketing functions. Lecturing is not well paid, not for the hours people put in. Perhaps it used to be a gravy train, not for a long time, more like a hard slog.

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You really think it's a gravy train? I'm guessing you haven't worked in one, or not recently? The people who gave you crap lectures might have been great at research. Or not... at least now all lecturers have to do some pedagogical training. Not very good because it's a tick box to get HEFCE funding, but something nonetheless.

I thought my supervisor was on a gravy train when I was a PG student. Never had much time for me. Then I saw their timetable. I've met 3 people who worked in the private sector then became lecturers, and each was shocked at the hours they had to put in (wind entrepreneur turned engineering lecturer; pharmacist turned pharmacology lecturer; farmer turned management lecturer). The gravy train if there is one starts higher up, in university management and higher level admin posts, including marketing functions. Lecturing is not well paid, not for the hours people put in. Perhaps it used to be a gravy train, not for a long time, more like a hard slog.

Actually I have worked at a university.

I think for senior staff e.g vice chancellors, senior support, senior academics it is a gravy train.

(A bit depressing that academics who become vice chancellors get paid more than those doing useful research).

Not for  for most staff, sorry I should have been clearer.

I agree with you about lecturers today, in the 80s and 90s there were some real idle ones but not now.

I can assure my daughter will NOT become an academic.

Edited by iamnumerate
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If anyone else wondered what this meant ...

Marketisation or marketization is a restructuring process that enables state enterprises to operate as market-oriented firms by changing the legal environment in which they operate.

I can't see that universities are operating in a free market when there as yet appear to be no competitors set to leave the market.

As I say that, a noted uni chancellor (not VC) has gone on the record as saying there are some institutions having quite substantial financial difficulties.  But no failures as yet. :blink:

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cuts !=shortfall

 

the tuition fees rose to the maximum - because universities had to make good the shortfall in funding as best they could. It was cut under Thatcher, who saw herself as trimming fat, and successive governments did not match the increase in student numbers with increased funding.

You said universities had to make good a "shortfall".  I asked you for evidence of this "shortfall".  You say there were cuts, which there were, but you haven't (and can't) provide any evidence that these cuts led to a "shortfall".  There could, for example, have been a surplus of funding before the cuts and the cuts merely ended that surplus.

To support your claim of a "shortfall" you need to provide evidence.  You'd probably find that easier if you could define what this "shortfall" was.

 

The University "Councils" that get to make the key decisions on how universities are run, and often have primary inflence in selecting VCs, are stuffed full of local businessmen, who want someone imbued with market culture (not academic culture, God forbid) in the driving seat, not least to align with the direction of travel imparted by central govt.

 

Warwick: What's clear from the list is there are only 4 jobbing academics (the ones from Senate) in this list. (In Reading there is only one jobbing academic.)  3 of the 7 top posts (in addition to the 9 "independents") have never been academics. So it's hardly academic self governance. The other "professors" have probably had nothing to do with research or teaching since embarking on administration many years ago. Not having vetted your list, at least 5 clear businessmen seems like a lot to me, outnumbering the jobbing academics, unless you think HE should be a business.

It looks like in addition to markets, you don't know how university councils work!

You said university councils were "stuffed full of local businessmen".  I let you pick any example, you chose Warwick and I proved you wrong.  Now your complaint is there aren't enough "jobbing academics"  Shall we use your example of Warwick again?

https://warwick.ac.uk/services/gov/committees/council/#membership

The Pro-Chancellor and Chair of Council, The Vice-Chair of Council, The Vice-Chancellor and President, The Treasurer and The Provost are all ex officio members of the council.  Ex officio is latin Dave, it means "from the office" and ex officio members are appointed because they hold (or have held) other offices so it's not surprising they're not "jobbing academics", although one of the professors might be.

One of the appointed members is from the professional services of the university, so again it's not surprising they're not a "jobbing academic".

The independent members by definition are not members of the academic staff, salaried officers or students of the university so once again it's not surprising they're not "jobbing academics".

The student members obviously aren't "jobbing academics".

Ex officio and independent members have always been a feature of university councils, Dave.  An outside and independent perspective is a feature of good governance of any organisation. 

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cuts !=shortfall

You said universities had to make good a "shortfall".  I asked you for evidence of this "shortfall".  You say there were cuts, which there were, but you haven't (and can't) provide any evidence that these cuts led to a "shortfall".  There could, for example, have been a surplus of funding before the cuts and the cuts merely ended that surplus.

 

God not you again. I feel like I'm being stalked by some kind of Michael Gove figure. I've got better things to do than split hairs and unpick your many obfuscations and seemingly wilful misunderstandings. You think there were large cuts without "shortfalls", fine, I hope you are not in charge of any NHS budgets with this level of acumen. You think HE has not been cut under the tories, fine, revel in your alternative reality spewing from your keyboard. I always expect better from Oxbridge graduates, not sure why, they are pretty much always a disappointment. The one thing reliable is that they name drop it at every opportunity "when I was at Cambridge / Oxford" just as you did earlier in the thread. I'm not even going to read the rest of your weird drivel. I think I'm going to block you. Congrats - you are the first person I'm actually going to block of all the loons on here.  

Done!

So glad I blocked you, probably you will still be ranting away about how right you are about your make believe world for some time to come.

Edited by nickb1
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If anyone else wondered what this meant ...

Marketisation or marketization is a restructuring process that enables state enterprises to operate as market-oriented firms by changing the legal environment in which they operate.

 

I think the term is used more loosely than that to indicate turning education into a market. At least that is how it is used in debates over tuition fees, casualisation of employment, competition for students, private contractors now providing courses and so on. e.g.

https://medium.com/@drleejones/the-seven-deadly-sins-of-marketisation-in-british-higher-education-c91102a04a8f 

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I think I'm going to block you. Congrats - you are the first person I'm actually going to block of all the loons on here.  

Done!

To recap, you were wrong about public sector efficiency, wrong about the tuition fees "market", wrong about university councils being "stuffed full of local businessmen", wrong about the lack of "jobbing academics" on university councils and you could't prove your point about a "shortfall" in university funding.  

Aren't students like Warwick's quite well known for "No Platforming" people they don't know how to debate with?

https://theboar.org/2015/09/breaking-su-bans-atheism-soc-speaker-over-fears-she-would-incite-hatred/ (slow link, but worth the wait I think)

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UK universities accused of keeping students at all costs until after fee deadline
Claims some institutions persisting with face-to-face classes to delay drop-outs and retain tuition fees

https://www.theguardian.com/education/2020/oct/17/uk-universities-accused-of-keeping-students-at-all-costs-until-after-fee-deadline

"...Many universities are hesitating to move to online teaching to quell Covid because they are desperate to keep disenchanted students until the Christmas holidays, when a key deadline for fee rebates runs out, experts say.

In England, students who drop out in their first term are liable for only 25% of their £9,250 fees. However, many will be unaware that if they leave after their institution’s term 1 cut-off date, they have to pay half their course fees, or £4,625."

Not all about the gravy train huh?

P.s. this needs sharing IMO.

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UK universities accused of keeping students at all costs until after fee deadline
Claims some institutions persisting with face-to-face classes to delay drop-outs and retain tuition fees

https://www.theguardian.com/education/2020/oct/17/uk-universities-accused-of-keeping-students-at-all-costs-until-after-fee-deadline

If there was a tuition fees market, it would be mostly a market for lemons.

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I pay substantially less tax here than I did in the UK, yet I don't see people starving in the streets.

The UK's public sector is just tremendously inefficient and overpaid, though I'm starting to see that coming here too, in the organizations I know about; more and more overpaid managers, more 'diversity and inclusiveness' coordinators, and less and less actual workers to do the work the organization is supposed to be doing.

That's strange, a quick Google indicates the Tax take to GDP ratio is higher in Canada than the UK.

You little tax dodger.   

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  • 428 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
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      • up 5%



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