We should shut down the lower ranked universities and bull courses - debate Watch

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Roryyb
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#161
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#161
Depends which "leaderboards" you look at, for example universities that are based around Art and Design courses are usually ranked lower overall. But when you look at the subject course specific ranks they're a lot higher up.
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PQ
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(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
Well yes....
Watch this: http://prezi.com/h-zy5epxzl2f/what-i...ity-assurance/
Learn about the quality code
Read external examiners reports
Read QAA reviews
THEN come back and tell us which degrees are worth more than others.

Please stop repeating this bull**** on TSR - it really does you no favours just makes you look like the sort of person who mouths off about a system without understanding how that system works.
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Ripper-Roo
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#163
(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
Nobody can argue that a 2.2 in Chemistry at Oxford is harder than a 2.1 in Psychology in University West Of England - yet the current system does not recognise that.
Employers aren't stupid
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DoctorInTraining
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(Original post by PQ)

Please stop repeating this bull**** on TSR - it really does you no favours just makes you look like the sort of person who mouths off about a system without understanding how that system works.
Firstly don't be so rude - there is no need.

Secondly just because someone holds a different opinion to you doesn't mean you know what they have or haven't done.

Finally I have a great deal of knowledge about higher education. I have presented at international education conferences like AMEE and have read a great deal about different marking criteria, examiner reports, examination assessment theory and differences between medical schools - let alone different institutes!

If you can articulately and accurately explain why a 2.2 from Oxford University is easier to achieve than a 2.1 from UWE in psychology then I am all ears.

If however you are going to continue to make personal slurs and continue to conduct yourself in an immature manner, then please keep you comments to youself.
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DoctorInTraining
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(Original post by PQ)
Watch this: http://prezi.com/h-zy5epxzl2f/what-i...ity-assurance/
Learn about the quality code
Read external examiners reports
Read QAA reviews
THEN come back and tell us which degrees are worth more than others.

Please stop repeating this bull**** on TSR - it really does you no favours just makes you look like the sort of person who mouths off about a system without understanding how that system works.
Just looked at the presentation you gave the prezi link for....and it answers my point within the first few slides.

Universities can set their own standards.
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kingkongkaks
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(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
I can see why your upset - but this is the case for the higher universities too (me being one) but having a partner who studied at a less academically respected institute I can safely say that academic achievement was second to lifestyle!

I know this is not true of all students in such higher education establishments - but the contrast been the two was horrifying!

I don't think these alternative universities should be shut - but they should be rebranded so that employers know the quality of the qualification.
I'm just stating a point, no emotion involved.

Maybe that was true of the group or course-mates of your partner, like you said 'it is not true of all the students in higher education'.

Students in these so called 'crap' universities are no different to the students in the top 40. I have many friends who went to Oxford, UCL, LSE.. etc and i assure you their lifestyle was paramount, but that did not stop them from achieving amazing grades.

Hahaha 'rebranded', really? arbitrarily shutting down a university or rebranding it just because it is not in the top 40 does not mean that the teaching staff are not of the same quality of the top 40, nor does it mean that the students are less able when they graduate. A lot of employers have voiced their discontent at students from top universities just being book smart and not able to apply their knowledge, hence why some companies are even trying to create their own programs to combat this.

University is what you make it. I take my hat off to any student who can start and finish a degree, at any university, as most know its not easy.
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DoctorInTraining
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(Original post by kingkongkaks)
I'm just stating a point, no emotion involved.

Maybe that was true of the group or course-mates of your partner, like you said 'it is not true of all the students in higher education'.

Students in these so called 'crap' universities are no different to the students in the top 40. I have many friends who went to Oxford, UCL, LSE.. etc and i assure you their lifestyle was paramount, but that did not stop them from achieving amazing grades.

Hahaha 'rebranded', really? arbitrarily shutting down a university or rebranding it just because it is not in the top 40 does not mean that the teaching staff are not of the same quality of the top 40, nor does it mean that the students are less able when they graduate. A lot of employers have voiced their discontent at students from top universities just being book smart and not able to apply their knowledge, hence why some companies are even trying to create their own programs to combat this.

University is what you make it. I take my hat off to any student who can start and finish a degree, at any university, as most know its not easy.
I agree with most of what you have said but there is a definitely a huge difference in standards between institutes which frustrates me.

Even within medicine - you would assume that all those who graduate do so with the same basic knowledge....I did when I first enrolled. However having studied education both with the UK and on a larger international scale I can honestly say the variation in standards is shocking - especially within the UK!

The university my partner was at had a medical school and I am not lying when I say what they did in a term we did in 3 weeks. The difference in standards and expectations was huge!

I agree with your overriding sentiment that it's not what you get, it's what you do with it - I know someone with a 2.1 from Cambridge who is now working a call centre job and has been for 3 years.

Regardless of all the politically delicate nature of this topic - the idea that all degrees are equal is the notion that I contest.
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Le Nombre
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(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
I agree with most of what you have said but there is a definitely a huge difference in standards between institutes which frustrates me.

Even within medicine - you would assume that all those who graduate do so with the same basic knowledge....I did when I first enrolled. However having studied education both with the UK and on a larger international scale I can honestly say the variation in standards is shocking - especially within the UK!

The university my partner was at had a medical school and I am not lying when I say what they did in a term we did in 3 weeks. The difference in standards and expectations was huge!

I agree with your overriding sentiment that it's not what you get, it's what you do with it - I know someone with a 2.1 from Cambridge who is now working a call centre job and has been for 3 years.

Regardless of all the politically delicate nature of this topic - the idea that all degrees are equal is the notion that I contest.
But that is an entirely notional thing, in terms of jobs and so on, if not post grad work, everybody knows that the uni you went to will be a factor. In my cohort at work there are fully 3 unis represented, in spite of the fact it's meant to be open to anyone who applies.

The UK isn't keen on formalising things full stop (remember the Queen can still officially reject any Law Parliament passes!), if it works as it stands we just leave it be.
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ThatPerson
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#169
Just close London Met and everything is fine
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DoctorInTraining
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(Original post by Le Nombre)
But that is an entirely notional thing, in terms of jobs and so on, if not post grad work, everybody knows that the uni you went to will be a factor. In my cohort at work there are fully 3 unis represented, in spite of the fact it's meant to be open to anyone who applies.

The UK isn't keen on formalising things full stop (remember the Queen can still officially reject any Law Parliament passes!), if it works as it stands we just leave it be.
Not within medicine - the medical school are removed from our applications so they only see our grades and not the medical school!
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Le Nombre
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(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
Not within medicine - the medical school are removed from our applications so they only see our grades and not the medical school!
But Medicine, for whatever reason UKFPO deems, presumably the fact the GMC monitors all Med Schools, is the sole exception. For everything else it does matter (maybe not nurses?). We shouldn't change the entire system because of one exception, the exception should change.

Also, the information was freely available that UKFPO is university blind, if you objected so strongly to that you could have either chosen a Med School you deemed to be easier to get in a high decile at or gone a bit more extreme and chosen a career such as IB or City law where the uni name is pretty much the most important thing on your CV.
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kingkongkaks
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(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
I agree with most of what you have said but there is a definitely a huge difference in standards between institutes which frustrates me.

Even within medicine - you would assume that all those who graduate do so with the same basic knowledge....I did when I first enrolled. However having studied education both with the UK and on a larger international scale I can honestly say the variation in standards is shocking - especially within the UK!

The university my partner was at had a medical school and I am not lying when I say what they did in a term we did in 3 weeks. The difference in standards and expectations was huge!

I agree with your overriding sentiment that it's not what you get, it's what you do with it - I know someone with a 2.1 from Cambridge who is now working a call centre job and has been for 3 years.

Regardless of all the politically delicate nature of this topic - the idea that all degrees are equal is the notion that I contest.
I agree not all degrees are equal, as the intensity of say medicine or law is different to the intensity of agricultural studies (no offence to anyone its just an example). However i feel the shutting down of institutions would be the wrong way to go.

I also studied abroad and i totally agree that the UK is lagging behind a lot of countries in terms of standards, however i feel the argument is not with the university or even students. I think it lies deep within society, as for years there has not been an urgency to learn or the 'get up and go' (for want of a better phrase) as seen in other countries across the world.

Its sad to say but the UK has lost its hunger to compete, not to say people aren't trying or competing, because they are and i've seen it first hand, but the bar has been raised and that goes from all universities not just the ones outside the top 40. I think a realization needs to occur for things to change, maybe time is the only healer of this situation.
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DoctorInTraining
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(Original post by Le Nombre)
But Medicine, for whatever reason UKFPO deems, presumably the fact the GMC monitors all Med Schools, is the sole exception. For everything else it does matter (maybe not nurses?). We shouldn't change the entire system because of one exception, the exception should change.

Also, the information was freely available that UKFPO is university blind, if you objected so strongly to that you could have either chosen a Med School you deemed to be easier to get in a high decile at or gone a bit more extreme and chosen a career such as IB or City law where the uni name is pretty much the most important thing on your CV.
I can appreciate your response but I'm trying to show that there are plenty of flaws with the current system of which medicine is only one.

If you reflect on my previous post - I started medical school assuming (naively) that they were all equal as they all enable you to work as a doctor in the UK. I had no idea until about 3 years ago the huge variation! And by that time there's little you can do!

You're right that your last point is a bit extreme - not doing medicine because of the standardised recruitment would be foolish!

I would like to add that I don't agree with the OP's idea of shutting down institutes - but if all are to be considered equal than more has to be done to ensure uniformed standards across the UK.
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Le Nombre
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(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
I can appreciate your response but I'm trying to show that there are plenty of flaws with the current system of which medicine is only one.

If you reflect on my previous post - I started medical school assuming (naively) that they were all equal as they all enable you to work as a doctor in the UK. I had no idea until about 3 years ago the huge variation! And by that time there's little you can do!

You're right that your last point is a bit extreme - not doing medicine because of the standardised recruitment would be foolish!

I would like to add that I don't agree with the OP's idea of shutting down institutes - but if all are to be considered equal than more has to be done to ensure uniformed standards across the UK.
But I think there are more flaws with levelling it out as you suggest. Where there are uni blind applications for whatever reason it is easy to remove those filters, whereas moving around vast numbers of teaching staff to even out standards is not quite so simple. You could just impose uniform exams, which may work in subject like Medicine and Law, but in most subjects, where the modules are directly linked to the lecturer's research and may only be taught there, it would be virtually impoossible.

But that would harm research, which is the key reason universities exist. If you don't let the best all gather in research groups the standard of research will drop. It would be fine to implement an even distribution of standards if, as with schools, the primary purpose was to teach, but it isn't.
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DoctorInTraining
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(Original post by Le Nombre)
But I think there are more flaws with levelling it out as you suggest. Where there are uni blind applications for whatever reason it is easy to remove those filters, whereas moving around vast numbers of teaching staff to even out standards is not quite so simple. You could just impose uniform exams, which may work in subject like Medicine and Law, but in most subjects, where the modules are directly linked to the lecturer's research and may only be taught there, it would be virtually impoossible.

But that would harm research, which is the key reason universities exist. If you don't let the best all gather in research groups the standard of research will drop. It would be fine to implement an even distribution of standards if, as with schools, the primary purpose was to teach, but it isn't.
I 100% champion uniform exams (like A levels but obviously at degree level) in core subjects like medicine, law, engineering etc

I'm not talking about moving staff - I'm talking about have a defined range (lower and upper) of what is expected in a certain degree - for example then a 2.1 in maths would be effectively equal across the board whether it's Oxford, Bristol, UWE or Worcester.

The issue I have is that at present is the variation between standards - not the variation in topics covered - but the standard of assessment and thus level awarded should be addressed.
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Le Nombre
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(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
I 100% champion uniform exams (like A levels but obviously at degree level) in core subjects like medicine, law, engineering etc

I'm not talking about moving staff - I'm talking about have a defined range (lower and upper) of what is expected in a certain degree - for example then a 2.1 in maths would be effectively equal across the board whether it's Oxford, Bristol, UWE or Worcester.

The issue I have is that at present is the variation between standards - not the variation in topics covered - but the standard of assessment and thus level awarded should be addressed.
But how do you go about defining that standard? If someone is the world leader in their field and tells you that the exam on something you know nothing about is pretty tough how are any over seers to know otherwise?

The great thing about uni is you can be taught by specialists, but that creates issues (particularly given the existence of researh groups) as the only people who could go about imposing a flat standard on say, the use of Zemstvo by the Mensheviks in late Imperial Russia, are the ones setting them, and they all know each other, objectivity is practically impossible.
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PQ
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(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
Firstly don't be so rude - there is no need.
That wasn't rude - that was pointing out that spouting off about quality standards for degrees without understanding the system of QA within and between universities just makes you look silly.

You're more than welcome to continue to give your opinion on topics you haven't looked into (which is clear from the fact that you're attempting to compare 2 subjects at 2 classifications at two institutions). I just wanted to warn you that you're posting without doing your research and so making yourself appear ignorant.

Secondly just because someone holds a different opinion to you doesn't mean you know what they have or haven't done.
True - the example you gave made it clear that you don't understand the system of quality standards and assurance in UK universities - not the fact that I disagree with you

Finally I have a great deal of knowledge about higher education. I have presented at international education conferences like AMEE and have read a great deal about different marking criteria, examiner reports, examination assessment theory and differences between medical schools - let alone different institutes!

If you can articulately and accurately explain why a 2.2 from Oxford University is easier to achieve than a 2.1 from UWE in psychology then I am all ears.

If however you are going to continue to make personal slurs and continue to conduct yourself in an immature manner, then please keep you comments to youself.
If you have so much experience of UK medical school standards then why on EARTH would you enter the discussion talking about chemistry and psychology degrees. Obviously the QA and regulations mechanisms are different for medicine. I'd be very interested in your experience of differential medicine teaching.

If you continue to belittle and devalue education standards without understanding the system involved then I'm afraid it isn't me who will appear immature.

(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
Just looked at the presentation you gave the prezi link for....and it answers my point within the first few slides.

Universities can set their own standards.
Right - so you stopped at slide 4.

Then please look at slides 8, 9 & 10, 16, 17, 18 & 19 and slide 23.

Then go away and look at the quality code and subject benchmarks for psychology and chemistry.

Then look at the external examiners reports for UWE and Oxford.

At that point you'll have some insight into how degree classifications on the two degrees you reference compare in terms of "easiness". And even then that doesn't take into account the aptitude or external support available to individual students.

As I say - you're commenting on a system you clearly don't understand (and a consequence of that is that you're belittling the achievements of huge numbers of students) - that's a pretty immature thing to be doing.
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DoctorInTraining
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(Original post by Le Nombre)
But how do you go about defining that standard? If someone is the world leader in their field and tells you that the exam on something you know nothing about is pretty tough how are any over seers to know otherwise?

The great thing about uni is you can be taught by specialists, but that creates issues (particularly given the existence of researh groups) as the only people who could go about imposing a flat standard on say, the use of Zemstvo by the Mensheviks in late Imperial Russia, are the ones setting them, and they all know each other, objectivity is practically impossible.
Practically impossible - that's what people used to say about the NHS (and yes it has it's faults) but it works!

I didn't say my ideal solution was easy or achievable overnight - but I do strongly feel the standard diversity within higher education is staggering!

Point is not all universities are currently equal - thus not all qualifications are equal.
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(Original post by DoctorInTraining)
I 100% champion uniform exams (like A levels but obviously at degree level) in core subjects like medicine, law, engineering etc
I can't speak for medicine or law, but I did engineering and am firmly against uniform exams because it would mean that content would also have to be uniform. Part of the reason I chose my university was because of the unique content, which I found extremely beneficial in terms of securing employment. We all want to learn different things and different university degree contents allows for this.
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One can not shut down London Met


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