Books Every Fresher Should Read
Arts
6 views
6 views

Books Every Fresher Should Read

Anonymous - September 19, 2018
France in Fine Fettle
Sports
33 views
33 views

France in Fine Fettle

Anonymous - September 17, 2018
Dive into Brightonian Culture
Arts
30 views
30 views

Dive into Brightonian Culture

Anonymous - September 17, 2018
Oh, baby, baby, did you see Britney at Pride?
Arts
59 views
59 views

Oh, baby, baby, did you see Britney at Pride?

Anastasia Konstantinidou - September 15, 2018
194 Views

Academics call for 'pick-and-mix' degrees

Pic ‘n’ mix... degrees? (photo: Christophe Dune)

Pic ‘n’ mix... degrees? (photo: Christophe Dune)

The long-established system of three-year degrees is being brought into review by the higher education system, a new report has revealed.

According to universities in the UK, students need to be able to study on a “pick-and-mix” basis, allowing for more flexible degrees. The universities secretary John Denham suggests a “credits-based system,” where students can accumulate course credits at different times and different institutions. This is a radical overhaul of the current system that states people studying for a degree are to do so in a limited time frame and location.

Suggestions also include getting rid of the existing classification system and instead, implementing a report card which would document the accumulation of students’ achievements. Universities should also concentrate on expanding their campuses to countries abroad and modifying the academic calendar which many now see as ‘old-fashioned.’

This review has been developed in light of the fact that many people believe students should not enter full-time education immediately after having just finished school. Recent figures suggest that 42% of students now only study part-time. This is the main concern affecting the current academic calendar, which the vice-chancellor of Staffordshire University, Christine King, says is unhelpful since these students are working at the same time as studying. “Certainly traditional university systems, timetables and calendars are constructed with little reference to the world of employment,” she added.

While many pro vice-chancellors support this drastic change, others are considerably less keen, such as Dr. David Law, the vice-chancellor of Edge Hill University. He believes that many of the new proposals are too idealistic and would not work in view of the “serious problem with current public expenditure.” While he agrees that students are likely to pick and mix their courses at different universities, he emphasises the unlikelihood of scrapping the structure of the academic calendar. “It’s harder to imagine that the academic year will be done with – it ties in well with the school year.” This view is consolidated by London South Bank University’s pro vice-chancellor, Peter McCaffery, who describes the academic year as a “quaint anachronism.”

Moreover, in times of economic recession, there is doubt as to whether the employers will co-operate in the funding of part-time and postgraduate students. This news comes about despite the agreement that universities should have a stronger affiliation with civil servants, schools and businesses. McCaffrey claims that “Academics should mix in business and government circles,” adding that we must, however, have the patience for this change to occur as it will take a long time.

As new proposals are considered and decisions are finalised over the next ten years, the tuition fee is an especially sensitive topic. With the revamping of the university system in discussion, student fees will have to adapt accordingly. Dr. Law points out that “This will be the key tension over the next decade.” While there is likely to be an increase in the amount students have to pay for their education, there will still be a charging limit to which universities must adhere, as is the case now.

Many students and professors at universities feel that this change is not too dissimilar to how they currently experience life on campus. Many colleges have already established links with other universities abroad, allowing students to spend a term or even a whole academic year in another country to continue their studies. Furthermore, a lot of courses currently offered by universities allow a system much like the proposed one, where students can choose elective courses from another school. One Sussex student says “Although I’m doing a Psychology degree, my elective course is in Spanish which is obviously completely different.” When asked if they enjoy the mix of studies, this student explains that, “I’m so glad I’m not doing the same subject all the time because that could get boring.” It seems highly likely that the new pick-and-mix degrees could be just the thing to keep students interested in their education, reducing the number of university drop-outs. At present, the proportion of students in the UK who fail to complete their degree course stands at a staggering 22.6 per cent.

In spite of varying views on the specific changes to the university system, there is a united support on the broadening of degrees in general. Paul Ramsden, the former vice-chancellor of Sydney University and current head of the UK-based Higher Education Academy, cites that “The curriculum needs to be a broader study of many different subject areas. We still specialise too early and that’s very damaging.” A wider range of degrees would also attract more students coming from various backgrounds and with different expectations, he added. The head of the institute of education at the University of Worcester, Professor Chris Robertson, advocates that universities should invest more in high-quality teaching in the following years.

Universities are pleased that their suggestions are being considered before ministers introduce any changes, but are doubtful as to whether their proposals will be successfully executed. A recent report issued by Universities UK foresees a 6% decline in student numbers over the next decade.

Get the best viral stories straight into your inbox!

Don't worry, we don't spam
Books Every Fresher Should Read
Arts
6 views
6 views

Books Every Fresher Should Read

Anonymous - September 19, 2018
France in Fine Fettle
Sports
33 views
33 views

France in Fine Fettle

Anonymous - September 17, 2018
Dive into Brightonian Culture
Arts
30 views
30 views

Dive into Brightonian Culture

Anonymous - September 17, 2018
Oh, baby, baby, did you see Britney at Pride?
Arts
59 views
59 views

Oh, baby, baby, did you see Britney at Pride?

Anastasia Konstantinidou - September 15, 2018

Leave a Reply

Join the Badger Team

Apply today!

Latest Posts

Books Every Fresher Should Read
Arts
6 views
Arts
6 views

Books Every Fresher Should Read

Anonymous - September 19, 2018

Starting university comes with both exciting but potentially daunting changes, with both moving away from home and studying at degree level posing to be two new challenges.…

INCREDIBLES 2: The Sequel with a Feminist Twist
Film & Theatre
20 views
Film & Theatre
20 views

INCREDIBLES 2: The Sequel with a Feminist Twist

Anonymous - September 18, 2018

One key film in the development of anyone who grew up in the early 2000s was The Incredibles (2004). It’s comedy, vibrancy, and general sense of fun…

France in Fine Fettle
Sports
33 views
Sports
33 views

France in Fine Fettle

Anonymous - September 17, 2018

Prior to the start of the quadrennial tournament this summer, football fans across the world grew sceptical over Russia’s credentials and ability to host the most prestigious…

Dive into Brightonian Culture
Arts
30 views
Arts
30 views

Dive into Brightonian Culture

Anonymous - September 17, 2018

Boredom is impossible when you throw yourself into everything this weird and wonderful city has to offer. The specific and unique cultural wonders of Brighton are indeed…

Oh, baby, baby, did you see Britney at Pride?
Arts
59 views
Arts
59 views

Oh, baby, baby, did you see Britney at Pride?

Anastasia Konstantinidou - September 15, 2018

During this year’s Pride Festival, Brighton had the honour of welcoming international pop star and voice of the early 2000s, Britney Spears, to the main stage. Undoubtedly,…

Union obliterates the debate – unwritten requirement used to shut down free speech debate
Campus News
1130 views1
Campus News
1130 views1

Union obliterates the debate – unwritten requirement used to shut down free speech debate

Jordan Wright - April 27, 2018

Student society Liberate the Debate’s most recent event was cancelled over a lack of compliance with the Students' Union's (USSU) requirement for a neutral chair - a…

Sussex Lecturer Accused of Making Transphobic Comments Ahead of Brighton Trans Pride 2018
News
60 views1
News
60 views1

Sussex Lecturer Accused of Making Transphobic Comments Ahead of Brighton Trans Pride 2018

Jessica Hubbard - September 15, 2018

Kathleen Stock, a philosophy Lecturer at Sussex, was accused of making transphobic comments in July 2018. This followed various interviews and blog posts by Stock. Stock told…

Welcome 2018 Freshers!
Campus News
65 views
Campus News
65 views

Welcome 2018 Freshers!

Billie-Jean Johnson - September 15, 2018

Ah, Freshers. You’ve no idea the amazing year you have ahead of you! As you read this now, you’ve probably met your flatmates and maybe even met…

A conversation with Kathleen Stock on Transgender Identity
Opinion
57 views
Opinion
57 views

A conversation with Kathleen Stock on Transgender Identity

Jessica Hubbard - September 15, 2018

Kathleen Stock, a philosophy lecturer at Sussex University, met with controversy after criticising the government’s reform of the Gender Recognition Act (2004). The amendment would ‘de-medicalise’ the…

Verve Couture – Musicality, kitsch & ignition: the beginning of a series
Arts
384 views
Arts
384 views

Verve Couture – Musicality, kitsch & ignition: the beginning of a series

Ricardo Reverón Blanco - June 17, 2018

Pictured: Zac Black At Proud Cabaret audiences were spellbound as if at night at the circus, yet this was not like Angela Carter’s magical realist novel; Verve…

Fleabag on stage at The Old Market – review
Arts
388 views
Arts
388 views

Fleabag on stage at The Old Market – review

Florence Dutton - June 11, 2018

[caption id="attachment_35513" align="alignnone" width="2400"] Fleabag at Soho Theatre[/caption] Last Monday at 8pm at Brighton’s The Old Market, I sat myself down in my theatre seat eagerly awaiting…

Fleabag preview
Arts
362 views
Arts
362 views

Fleabag preview

Florence Dutton - June 2, 2018

[caption id="attachment_35513" align="alignnone" width="2400"] Fleabag at Soho Theatre[/caption] Following the mass success of the Bafta award-winning BBC Series, DryWrite and Soho Theatre are about to hit the…

Brighton Festival: Ezra Furman at the Dome
Arts
427 views
Arts
427 views

Brighton Festival: Ezra Furman at the Dome

Georgia Grace - June 1, 2018

Having completed my final semester of university with modules on punk history and queer arts, it was fitting that I rounded off my end-of-assessment celebrations by attending…

Arts
444 views

The Tempest review

Georgia Grace - May 30, 2018

As the sun begins to set over Hove Green, tinnies of Red Stripe are cracked open, tartan blankets are strewn, and families tuck into their picnic hampers.…

A Glass Half Empty review
Arts
383 views
Arts
383 views

A Glass Half Empty review

Georgia Grace - May 27, 2018

For those of us coming to the end of another year of university study, the prospect of careers, marriages and babies may seem a long way off.…

DollyWould at The Old Market review
Arts
360 views
Arts
360 views

DollyWould at The Old Market review

Alex Hutson - May 27, 2018

Sh!t Theatre’s DollyWould is a hilarious, thoughtful and experimental performance piece. The award winning show has the Sh!t Theatre duo integrating comedy, storytelling, personal experience and music.…

UCU Launch Petition to End the ‘Hostile Environment’ at Sussex
Campus News
545 views
Campus News
545 views

UCU Launch Petition to End the ‘Hostile Environment’ at Sussex

Billie-Jean Johnson - May 26, 2018

The Sussex branch of the University and College Union (UCU) has launched a petition calling for Vice-Chancellor Adam Tickell to end the 'hostile environment' at Sussex. The…

Arts
312 views

Shakespeare in the sun – The Tempest preview

Georgia Grace - May 24, 2018

In a world of dystopian King Lears and female Hamlets, Shakespeare’s classics are constantly being reimagined for the modern day. There’s something oddly refreshing then about the…

Review: Nick Cave Double Bill at The Old Market (TOM’s Film Club)
Arts
909 views
Arts
909 views

Review: Nick Cave Double Bill at The Old Market (TOM’s Film Club)

Sophie Coppenhall - May 23, 2018

What a phenomenal contrast these two films present when watched side-by-side. In essence, together they are capable of tracing inner and outer metamorphoses of their subjects. The…

Dollywould at The Old Market preview
Arts
369 views
Arts
369 views

Dollywould at The Old Market preview

Alex Hutson - May 22, 2018

From the 22nd May - 25th May 2018 DollyWould will be showing at The Old Market. An exciting new show, presented by Sh!t Theatre, who won the…

Exhibition: Io-sono Fedilouu
Artist Focus
452 views
Artist Focus
452 views

Exhibition: Io-sono Fedilouu

Ricardo Reverón Blanco - May 16, 2018

Last week artist Fedilou made her debut exhibition in the downstairs space of Morelli Zorelli, a quaint vegan Italian restaurant in Hove, featuring a collection of intimate…