Category

REF
Changes to the 2021 Research Evaluation Framework will increase the stress on academics and strengthen the hand of the managerial elite, argues Josh Robinson, lecturer in English literature at Cardiff University  Two of the changes implemented for the 2021 Research Excellence Framework (REF) in the wake of the recommendations of the Stern Review have reversed a...
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A think tank attacks grade inflation, while a new study calls for an end to the UK admissions system based on predicted A-level grades   Too many firsts risk universities’ credibility, says think tank BBC, 21/06/2018 Universities risk losing their credibility due to “rocketing” grade inflation, a think tank has said. According to Reform, the...
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Mary Curnock Cook, the former chief executive of UCAS, delivered an annual lecture to the CDBU on January 23. Professor Dorothy Bishop, who was there, responds to accusations that academics prioritise research over teaching Ms Curnock Cook is a brave woman: she noted at the outset that CDBU was opposed to managerialism and consumerism, so...
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Stories about vice-chancellors’ large salaries have led people to ask whether universities provide value for money. We should begin by tackling the question of how we meet infrastructure costs, argues Gill Evans, emeritus professor of medieval theology and intellectual history at the University of Cambridge “Value for money,” said Jo Johnson in a speech in July 2017, is “an increasingly pressing...
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Opinion piece by G. R. Evans It is very welcome news that the Government has decided to include a definition of the Haldane Principle on the face of the Bill. Jo Johnson made a special point of this in his speech to Universities UK on 24 February.  An accompanying document was published jointly by both...
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In December, Jo Johnson, the Universities and Science Minister, launched a review of university research funding. The goals of the review appear well-aligned with those of CDBU: ‘to cut red tape so that universities can focus more on delivering the world-leading research for which the UK is renowned’. The review is chaired by the President...
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Opinion Piece by Marina Warner Current policies are imposing business practices on education, and the consequences are blighting the profession, and will continue to inflict ever deeper blight on the people engaged in it – at all levels. The relinquishing of financial support by the state is not accompanied by diminution of authority: indeed the huge...
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By the CDBU Steering Committee If you work in the sciences, you will be all too aware of the journal impact factor (JIF). The requirement for ‘publications in high impact journals’ has become a staple of job advertisements, and the achievement of this goal is emblazoned across research group websites as evidence of gloriousness. The...
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By the CDBU Steering Committee Last Thursday evening, academic staff at the Department of Politics at the University of Surrey received a communication from the department of Human Resources informing them of a proposal for ‘restructuring’ the Faculty of Arts and Human Sciences. This was totally unexpected. The proposal in the document would lead to...
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Opinion Piece by Derek Sayer* Editorial Note: In our previous blogpost, we noted that while there was agreement that REF2014 was problematic, there was less agreement about alternatives. To make progress, we need more debate. We hope that this piece by Derek Sayer will stimulate this, and we welcome comments. Please note that comments are...
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