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UCU
Interview conducted by Sean McMahon Academic staff do the work that defines a university: teaching, scholarship and research. But too often in British universities the voices of academics are marginalised by undemocratic forms of governance. Top-down, unaccountable, corporate-style management has increasingly replaced collegial decision-making, stifling the autonomy of academics and impeding rather than facilitating academic...
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Questions concerning what should be believed, what should be done, and why, are unavoidable dimensions of a recognisably human life; and the arts and humanities in particular illuminate the conduct and predicaments of such a life […] to study the humanities, then, is to gather resources for learning how to live well, and – more...
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Review by Patrick Ainley, former professor of training and education at the University of Greenwich and regular contributor to the Post-16 Educator. The argument in this book is that mass higher education, for all its multiple and irreversible achievements, is experiencing a general crisis’ (150). It is well timed. 58 UK universities struck for three days...
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Words by Dr Heather McKnight, founder of the social enterprise Magnetic Ideals and Doctor of Legal Studies. In 1970, the Commission on Academic Freedom and the Law (CAFL) released research exposing changes in how universities were using the law: a discontinuity that both marked and reflected the historical moment. The joint commission between the National...
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UCU has asked external examiners to resign in support of the strike over pensions. But what exactly does an external examiner do? Professor GR Evans reflects on the value of an undersung role On 15 March the University and College Union (UCU) asked external examiners to “resign” in support of the strike over proposed USS pension...
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It seemed that the pensions dispute had been resolved – and then union members voted to reject it. So who decides when an agreement has been reached, asks Professor GR Evans The press was quick off the mark to announce a resolution to the pensions dispute when talks with ACAS involving Universities UK and the...
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A Freedom of Information request from the University and College Union reveals a reluctance by universities to share information about their use of teaching staff on hourly contracts Casual staff have always played an important role in university teaching. Many graduate students and postdocs supplement their income by delivering lectures and tutorials, gaining valuable experience...
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Academic pensions may seem like a niche interest. But, argues Dr Rowan Cerys Tomlinson, proposals to change the current pension scheme represent an assault on the entire sector I became an academic for many reasons: because of my intellectual curiosity, because I wanted to contribute to society by teaching, because academia offered the heady mixture...
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The big news this week is that there’s a real danger that falling student numbers may see some English universities forced to close down. Elsewhere there’s concern about pensions, student finance and bullying   Fears of university closures after removal of safety net   The Guardian, 30/01/2018, Anna Fazackerley Some English universities may be in danger...
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