Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Teaching Excellence Framework: typical Tory nonsense

With the Tories` somewhat distorted views on education, the expectations of their "teaching excellence framework" were probably to enhance reputations of Russell group members, and cast doubt on the value of so-called lesser institutions (Elite universities given low scores in new table, 22/06/17). Basing rankings on statistics which have little to do with, as the director of the Higher Education Policy Institute said, "any meaningful assessment of teaching", the awards instead rely on results which often have nothing to do with how well students are taught, such as drop-out rates and graduate employment figures. 
         In fact, the results tell us more yet again about Tory governments which refuse to listen to experts, who have naturally "urged prospective students to treat the results with caution", and which are completely out of touch with the society they were elected to serve. It is little wonder, either that students call it "another meaningless ranking system", or that the University of Southampton is "appealing against its bronze award" ; it won`t be the only one.

Is it any wonder the Russell Group has said it "does not believe the Teaching Excellence Framework measures absolute quality" (Top universities not up to the new gold standard, 22/06/17)? Rather than assess the quality of teaching by actually observing lectures, these Tef gradings have been awarded using results based on student satisfaction, drop-out rates and graduate employment figures. How typical of Tory governments to ignore the advice of experts. Imagine if schoolteachers were assessed without being seen at work in the classroom!

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