Academics

‘Universities stamp out creativity’: are graduates ready for work? | Education

A few numbers are enough to sum up how far the world of work is changing. More than six million workers fear their jobs could be replaced by machines in the next 10 years. Around 1.1 million people now work in the gig economy, using online platforms to find small, often on-demand, jobs. And a third of graduates find themselves mismatched to the jobs they secure on graduation. What universities can do to prepare their graduates for an unknown future…

Read More

My university accepts overseas students who are doomed to fail | Anonymous academic | Education

A few years ago, while working in a business school, I was the academic in my department responsible for looking after PhD students. Around this time, the department dean identified international PhD students as a lucrative income stream. He hoped this might help shore up the department, since his strengths didn’t lie in securing research funding or drawing income from local businesses. He started by aggressively recruiting international students with full fees or bursaries awarded by their country of origin,…

Read More

‘Talented women of colour are blocked’ – why are there so few black female professors? | Education

Black female professors face bullying and discrimination as they climb up the career ladder, according to a report surveying 20 of the 25 black female professors in the UK. The new research, from the University and College Union, explores the experiences of black female academics. They report being repeatedly overlooked for promotion, regularly confused for administrative staff and unsupported by other colleagues, including other women. Here, three black female academics across a range of roles share their personal accounts. ‘I’ve…

Read More

Black female professors must deal with bullying to win promotion, report finds | Education

Black female professors have to overcome bullying, stereotyping and institutional neglect in order to win promotion, according to a damning new report of their experiences working at British universities. In interviews with 20 of the total 25 black female professors working in UK universities, Nicola Rollock, the report’s author, said that their experiences made for depressing reading. “What they are saying is that their entire careers have been characterised by abuse and exclusion, and that their race has been the…

Read More

It’s appalling that universities can sack researchers and keep their funding | Matt Waddup | Education

The revelation that universities will be able to use the work of staff they have made redundant in their submissions to the Research Excellence Framework (Ref) has rightly provoked outrage amongst the academic community. It is – put simply – a breach of faith with those who do the work. It risks causing real reputational damage to funders and any institution foolish enough to go along with it, and must be reversed. While there are many practical problems with the…

Read More

Legal action prompts academy to consider isolation unit criticisms | Education

An academy chain has pledged to look at criticism of its use of isolation units in a review of its behaviour policy, after a student mounted legal action against the trust. Proceedings were lodged in the high court in December against Outwood Grange Academies Trust’s use of “isolation booths”, spaces in “consequence rooms” in which children sit in silence for hours as punishment for breaking school rules. The trust runs 31 schools across Yorkshire, the Humber and the east Midlands.…

Read More

My toxic supervisor ruined my health – but my university did nothing | Anonymous academic | Education

I arrived in the UK with a highly skilled work visa and a prestigious European grant. I thought I had hit the jackpot: my contract guaranteed enough money to pay the bills and fund high-quality research, my supervisor was a big name in the field, and my project would allow me to pursue big ideas and make a difference. But that’s not how things turned out. The superstar supervisor turned out to represent everything wrong with academia. During one of…

Read More

Video games can turn university graduates into better employees | Matthew Barr | Education

In recent years, Boris Johnson has excelled at making ignorant pronouncements and illiterate blunders. From offensive remarks on burqas to reciting Kipling in Myanmar and his ludicrous statements on Brexit, Johnson has perfected the art of getting it wrong. It feels like he’s managed to offend just about everyone. For video game educators like myself, that moment arrived way back in 2006, when Johnson attacked video games as a learning tool. “They [young people] become like blinking lizards, motionless, absorbed,…

Read More