GoogleTranslate Service


Universities in the UK set to become the preserve of big business and the wealthy

January 5th, 2012 by Graham Attwell

Sally Hunt, general secretary of the University and College Union (UCU), blogs on a report released this morning by the University and College Union (UCU) which “has revealed annual public spending on university teaching and research in England will fall to its lowest proportion in over a century, as a result of the government’s new higher education reforms.”

Sally goes on to say that: “Our study also highlights how as spending on teaching and research falls, the burden on students to fund higher education will increase. By 2013/2014 the proportion students contribute to university funding (through higher tuition fees) will be 47.2% – the highest since the 1890s when university was the preserve of the wealthiest.”…..

These plans will put at risk decades of progress in opening up access to education and will endanger the health of the sector. You cannot maintain a world-class university system in the 21st century by turning the clock back to the 1900s and before.”

For the last year universities in England have been cutting back on expenditure and making teachers and researchers redundant. Research is to a large extent now dependent on external funding, meaning the research agenda is essentially being driven by big business.

The first effects of the increase in fees were seen in figures released by the Higher Education Funding Authority as reported in yesterday’s Guardian newspaper.

Whilst the number of UK-born students applying to start university this autumn has slumped by almost 8%,  applications from students aged 40 and over (who in the past have had lower incomes) have fallen by 15.4% compared with last year. Those aged 20 have dropped by 15%.

The Guardian also points out that “the number of applicants from England has dropped more sharply than those from Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. This is not surprising since institutions in those countries will be able to charge up to £9,000, but devolved governments will provide generous financial support to their own students.”

As research gets taken over by big business, university education will, as in the 19th Century, become a preserve of the wealthy.


Comments are closed.

  • Search Pontydysgu.org

    News Bites

    Digital Literacy

    A National Survey fin Wales in 2017-18 showed that 15% of adults (aged 16 and over) in Wales do not regularly use the internet. However, this figure is much higher (26%) amongst people with a limiting long-standing illness, disability or infirmity.

    A new Welsh Government programme has been launched which will work with organisations across Wales, in order to help people increase their confidence using digital technology, with the aim of helping them improve and manage their health and well-being.

    Digital Communities Wales: Digital Confidence, Health and Well-being, follows on from the initial Digital Communities Wales (DCW) programme which enabled 62,500 people to reap the benefits of going online in the last two years.

    See here for more information


    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.”


    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

  • @amiekey97 2/2 jogging Keeps me sane and helps me analyse what I wrote - in preparation for the next day. Repeat

    Yesterday 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