The end of university as we know it?


This op ed in the New York Times reminds me of a comment I read recently about how graduates in South Africa should acquire skills for which there is a primary demand (the comment came from Cheryl James over at Fasset).

The article mentions the crippling effect of student loans (I’ve had some experience with this myself) and the fact that current graduates are the employment group most affected by the recession. The author believes that the university’s ‘mass production’ model has led to a separation of specialisation where it should have encouraged collaboration and a pooling of skills.

The author suggests making higher learning more “agile, adaptive and imaginative” by restructuring curriculums, abolishing permanent departments, increasing collaboration between institutions, transforming the traditional dissertation, expanding the range of professional options for graduate students, and imposing mandatory retirement and abolishing tenure.

An interesting, if extreme, read!

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