When we sign up to go to university, we're expected to do our work, show up to lectures, and generally be an example student in our host city. That's the deal right? When paying thousands of pounds per year for the tutoring alone, regardless of housing, utilities, and fuelling our bodies with nutritious food, we can expect a certain degree of quality. No pun intended, this is no laughing matter because if burdened with a life-time of debt comparable to a mortgage not so long ago, it is imperative that we pass.
This assurance of quality has usually sat on the shoulders of the institution that is teaching, the name of the university or college being the guarantee of high quality. We would also notice that particular universities had minimum grade requirements for students wishing to apply. This entire process of trust and cherry picking allowed the culture of graduate study to remain fairly balanced. That is until the costs sky-rocketed as government funding for further education was peeled back to the bare bones then sold off as scrap. Now we need more than just a letter-head, to appease our wallets.
The new idea is to include a contract with each sign up that guarantees a high quality of tutoring. If the tutor fails to deliver what is agreed upon, then the student has a right to sue for the breach of contract. This makes fair sense, however I wonder if tutors are under enough pressure already? Is it the right thing to do to have the threat of financial reprimand in case of less than satisfactory grades? Having a snooping culture as a way of determining whether a student is paying significant attention to their work may be an unfortunate backlash from this decision.
Universities Minister Jo Johnson believes though that this move will simply encourage more students to foot the bill and pay for a degree. If there is a guarantee in place, then it really does boil down to the amount of effort they personally put in.
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