Saturday, February 06, 2010

update on the King's College palaeography protest...

by J J Cohen

... at Medieval News. Remarkably the Facebook group now has 4,304 members. If you haven't yet, sign the petition (4896 signatures!) and send a letter. Also keep in mind that these are not the only cuts to be made at King's, nor at British universities in general (an astonishing £915 million over three years has been announced).

We at ITM are happy to pass along any information from our UK friends and help in whatever way we can.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

If anyone is interested in the 'consultation document' that relates the whole Arts and Humanities strategy, it was made public 27 January 2010.

Available online at: http://www.kcl.ac.uk/content/1/c6/06/80/12/AHConsultationDoc.pdf

magistra said...

The link in the previous comment doesn't seem to be working. Details are here (as at 7/2/10). As well as the proposed staff cuts already announced (11 posts), there are an additional 11 posts proposed for cuts and everyone in the School of Arts and Humanities is having to reapply for their own jobs.

Eileen Joy said...

I have just finished reading the Kings College London "Consultation Document" and find it very dismaying, indeed. I think what I find most troubling is its "top-down" nature, whereby individual faculty members within Arts & Humanities will all have to submit a summary of their performance and be judged against each other in matters of so-called "redundancy" and/or "performance" [measured in terms of research, teaching, and administrative service] as opposed to involving the faculty in a more collective assessment of where redundancies and/or lower-than-is-acceptable performance levels exist. I am further dismayed by how the teaching performance will be measured--mainly by number of contact hours [classroom hours] at the BA and MA level and overall numbers of students taught at the BA/MA/PhD level [with student evaluation of teaching performance being the third criteria in this area]. Is there actually a 1-to-1 ratio between numbers of students taught and the importance/relevance of a particular field? We have heard, for example, over and over again in the U.S. how a dearth of graduates in Arabic languages has really harmed our position vis-a-vis the Arabic world in various areas of cross-cultural engagement [economic, military, etc.], but this leads, hopefully, to a desire to strengthen Arabic studies in some places [not to produce graduates that would, in number, rival the number of graduates in fields such as American history or Spanish, but rather to establish centers where a much-needed discipline could be relied upon to sustain the study of an area clearly critical in future geo-political and geo-cultural affairs]. This is just to say that we might hope to be able to rely upon our universities to understand the so-called "necessity" and/or "value" of particular teaching areas above & beyond the number of actual student bodies at any one given time present in a particular course. There are extremely important fields, moreover [in the sciences as well as the humanities] which will never yield large numbers of students but which rely on having a *certain number* of stellar students in any given year in order to ensure the long-term health of those fields [something like population genetics is one such field, also particle physics, also Chinese studies]. I could go on, but I'm a bit too angry at present.

Anonymous said...

Hi there. I see that the link to the consultation document is no longer active (broken? removed?). Does anyone have an archived or cached copy of the document that they can send me? Here in France, wer are interested in what is happening in the UK. Thanks in advance. email contact would be to ian(at)vickridge.eu.

tenthmedieval said...

Linked here, against just this eventuality.