GoogleTranslate Service


The perverse effects of government policies

July 31st, 2011 by Graham Attwell
Policy initiatives often have perverse effects. Of course it is perfectly easy to argue the English government’s entire policy on education is perverse.
But the latest announcements that some English universities may choose to offer bursaries to high achieving school students show just how policies can go wrong. the government has been encouraging universities to provide support for students as part of a commitment to widening access. But given the veracity of research showing that those form higher socio economic backgrounds have higher achievement levels in schools, the impact is going to be to reduce access to students from working class backgrounds and acerbate socio economic divides rather than widen access.
The government is also promoting STEM subjects, Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths. However in the present cash strapped situation, following government finding changes, universities may well choose to reduce provision in subjects such as science which require expensive resources and instead promote courses such as management studies which are relatively cheap to offer.
Of course the article is right in stating it will be very difficult to recover loans from students in other European countries. Personally I doubt their will be a flood of incoming students. Firstly the reputation of English universities is falling fast. And secondly most European countries offer free or low fee courses. But even the previous fees regime was seen by most students as unjust and as such the avoidance of fee repayments is seen as socially justified and acceptable.
clipped from www.guardian.co.uk
The prospect of cheaper deals for high achievers was criticised by Gareth Thomas, the shadow universities minister, who said the money should be spent on widening access to students from poorer backgrounds. Nearly a third of students achieving AAB or above are from private schools and 20% of those achieving the highest grades at state sixth forms are in grammar schools.
He also said he expected to record substantial numbers of courses closing, particularly in sciences, as many universities decide they can no longer afford to run expensive, laboratory-based degrees.
He warned that universities could be faced with European Union applicants “flooding in”, because it will be virtually impossible to force them to repay their student loans once they return to their home countries.
blog it

Comments are closed.

  • Search Pontydysgu.org

    News Bites

    Zero Hours Contracts

    Figures from the UK Higher Education Statistics Agency show that in total almost 11,500 people – both academics and support staff – working in universities on a standard basis were on a zero-hours contract in 2017-18, out of a total staff head count of about 430,000, reports the Times Higher Education.  Zero-hours contract means the employer is not obliged to provide any minimum working hours

    Separate figures that only look at the number of people who are employed on “atypical” academic contracts (such as people working on projects) show that 23 per cent of them, or just over 16,000, had a zero-hours contract.


    Resistance decreases over time

    Interesting research on student centered learning and student buy in, as picked up by an article in Inside Higher Ed. A new study published in PLOS ONE, called “Knowing Is Half the Battle: Assessments of Both Student Perception and Performance Are Necessary to Successfully Evaluate Curricular Transformation finds that student resistance to curriculum innovation decreases over time as it becomes the institutional norm, and that students increasingly link active learning to their learning gains over time


    Postgrad pressure

    Research published this year by Vitae and the Institute for Employment Studies (IES) and reported by the Guardian highlights the pressure on post graduate students.

    “They might suffer anxiety about whether they deserve their place at university,” says Sally Wilson, who led IES’s contribution to the research. “Postgraduates can feel as though they are in a vacuum. They don’t know how to structure their time. Many felt they didn’t get support from their supervisor.”

    Taught students tend to fare better than researchers – they enjoy more structure and contact, says Sian Duffin, student support manager at Arden University. But she believes anxiety is on the rise. “The pressure to gain distinction grades is immense,” she says. “Fear of failure can lead to perfectionism, anxiety and depression.”


    Teenagers online in the USA

    According to Pew Internet 95% of teenagers in the USA now report they have a smartphone or access to one. These mobile connections are in turn fueling more-persistent online activities: 45% of teens now say they are online on a near-constant basis.

    Roughly half (51%) of 13 to 17 year olds say they use Facebook, notably lower than the shares who use YouTube, Instagram or Snapchat.

    The survey also finds there is no clear consensus among teens about the effect that social media has on the lives of young people today. Minorities of teens describe that effect as mostly positive (31%) or mostly negative (24%), but the largest share (45%) says that effect has been neither positive nor negative.


    Other Pontydysgu Spaces

    • Pontydysgu on the Web

      pbwiki
      Our Wikispace for teaching and learning
      Sounds of the Bazaar Radio LIVE
      Join our Sounds of the Bazaar Facebook goup. Just click on the logo above.

      We will be at Online Educa Berlin 2015. See the info above. The stream URL to play in your application is Stream URL or go to our new stream webpage here SoB Stream Page.

  • Twitter

    RT @Omar_Gaza To those who tell us to "stay safe": I truly appreciate your support but: 1- #Gaza has no shelters. 2- I'm staying at home, what else can I do to stay safe? 3- Gaza is a highly populated condenced little space. 4- Most of us are unarmed. What else can we do? #GazaUnderAttack

    About 6 hours ago from Graham Attwell's Twitter via Tweetbot for Mac

  • RT @AndrewMarr9 Let me get this right. May is now being told price for avoiding No Deal is her resignation and a Job for a Boy. Refuse and the UK gets no deal? Well, thanks a bundle chaps

    About 6 hours ago from Cristina Costa's Twitter via Twitter for Android

  • Sounds of the Bazaar AudioBoo

  • Recent Posts

  • Archives

  • Meta

  • Upcoming Events

      There are no events.
  • Categories