Wednesday, February 01, 2006

The transparent academy

antique shop

Germaine Greer wrote a provocative piece in today’s Guardian about the real student experience of university (against the background of the Oxford move to institute student contracts). Her basic line is that students go away to university and learn to be independent and incidentally, along the way, they learn from each other. Of course, an increasing number of students are now local – they don’t actually leave home at all, let alone become independent – but, this aside, let’s hope they learn from each other because we’re so busy filling in forms and monitoring our quality that students hardly get a look in. So I laughed out loud reading about drKate’s Transparency Review – I note there isn’t a category for filling in your review (or doing mindless monitoring tasks). In fact, I made a vow to myself a couple of years back that I would always lie when filling mine in, based on a principled rejection of the phoney notions of transparency that are at the heart of this!

…and so back to the meme thing (far more interesting, I think than transparency). Well here goes: 4 things.

1. 4 things isn’t really a meme at all.

2. 4 things is a meme, but where’s it going?

3. 4 things has too much in common with the Transparency Review.

4. Guy is far too boring to engage with 4 things (and will probably loose good friends by speaking his mind).


Joolz said...

Yeah, you funny old thing. I don't really like lists at all. I think Kate and I just did it as we are girls and we go along with things. Whereas you are a boy and don't have to be good like us. And of courses you have a questionning mind.

Mary Plain said...

Joolz could be right-though Dr Rob did it- though like Kate I think I did it becauseI was pleased to be included! In my case it also got me back blogging. But what you have done is v interesting. (One good thing about my job now is no-one asks me to do a transparency review form. And you are right they are no use at all except for keeping HEFCE happy.)

Guy Merchant said...

Mmm, I thought the gender thing about 4 things, too...and then wondered whether to do it anyway, just to go against that (and of course also to feel included); then I thought of questioning it as a gender thing (thought it best not to take that tack); so ended up slagging it off nicely, as Joolz says with a 'questioning mind' (which, of course, is also gendered). So aaaarggh!!!

Guy Merchant said...

After thought. Must remember, I'm a boy.

Joolz said...

Yes and a very nice boy too. These lists just remind me of Nick Hornby, that's all.
And OK I'll confess. I had no idea what CDs or books to write.. I asked Gareth what CDs I like; I looked on my bookshelf for book titles. Pathetic.

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