University of Strathclyde - Save Our Subjects
On Tuesday 10 May, staff and students in three departments of Humanities and Social Sciences (HaSS) at the University of Strathclyde were informed by email that their departments were being proposed for closure. The decision follows a review carried out this year, which itself followed on from discussions last year around the merger of the old faculties of Law, Arts and Social Sciences, and Education. Over the next month there will be a period of consultation around the decision and it is absolutely that staff and students from across the university – regardless of what you study or teach – unite to defend the value of education, recognise the excellent teaching provision within each department, and moreover, understand that this is simply more of the same from university management which are swinging an axe wildly around and seeing where it hits. It would be nice to say that this is the first time we’ve seen this – but it isn’t. Time and time again we have had management pick out (and on) those subjects who don’t conform to a narrow ideology of what education should look like. Each of the departments earmarked for closure all have an excellent track record in terms of student satisfaction, top quality teaching staff, and contribute greatly to the academic standards of our university. But in today’s university setting it seems that this isn’t enough – management aren’t happy unless they equally contribute to the university’s research standing. This completely ignores the fact that the students on any of the courses didn’t apply on the basis of the research their lecturers undertake (research they’ll never even see), and is also a kick in the teeth for the academics who choose to put their students first. But even putting aside all that, what is really a kick in the teeth is the fact that students have been informed at a time when they’re sitting exams – exams in those same subjects that the university has now deemed to be not important or worthy enough for this university. Over the next month we’ll be working hard to put the case for each of the departments to the university – but we need your help. Make sure you get involved with the campaign and come together to Save our Subjects.