Too Many Universities All Dressed Up With Nowhere To Go

The Coalition Government which has placed so much emphasis on reversing the trend towards dumbing down in education must be extremely dismayed by one side-effect of tuition fees in higher education rising to as much as 9,000 a year. It appears that the drop in university course applications which has followed the fee rise has prompted many institutions to lower their entry requirements in order to keep their numbers up. This is especially true of newer universities and former polytechnics.

According to the Universities and Colleges Admission Service (UCAS), the number of English applicants to all universities has fallen by 10 % compared with last year. The biggest casualty was the University for the Creative Arts which suffered a massive 29.2% drop from 2011. At the top end of the spectrum, Oxbridge applications were virtually unchanged.

In what looks like a desperate last minute attempt to keep student numbers and revenues up, many institutions have lowered A level grade requirements which basically means that young people are being let in even though they may not have what it takes to ultimately gain a degree. Either that or the quality of degrees would have to fall. This is almost certainly not what the government intended when it moved the goalposts on fees.

Take, for example, the situation at Leeds Metropolitan University where the Telegraph reports entry levels on 97 degree courses, including architecture, law, English literature and history, have been cut to 80 points on the UCAS tariff – the equivalent of only two grade Es, the lowest possible pass. The inevitable result is that the average quality of undergraduates at such universities is destined to decline.

Of course, in the past, such establishments would have responded to such developments by focusing more of their education marketing spend on attracting students from overseas but, here again they have been stymied by the governments tightening up on visa requirements for students from outside of the EU.

That just leaves the EU as a potential source of students to compensate for the shortfall in domestic numbers. This may also prove a problem bearing in mind the economic malaise in the Eurozone and the fact that fees in many EU countries like Belgium are actually lower than in the UK.

Nobody it seems has asked the most relevant question which is what is the optimal number of university places in the UK in the first place. It would appear that the quality of graduates, especially in the disciplines which are in such high demand such as technology and engineering, is now taking centre stage in the debate rather than the total quantity of new undergraduates studying at our universities.

The University Of Southamptons Global Enterprise And Entrepreneurship Masters Degree

The University of Southamptons Global Enterprise and Entrepreneurship masters degree is led by Dr. Franz Huber who is a Lecturer in Strategy and Innovation.

Before becoming course leader on the University of Southamptons Global Enterprise and Entrepreneurship masters degree he was an ESRC funded Research Fellow at the Open University Business School.

He completed his PhD in economic geography at the University of Cambridge as a Gates Scholar. Before that he was a visiting graduate student at Duke University, and he received an MSc in geography and an MA in sociology from the University of Salzburg.

Franz is currently working on green’ innovation. He is completing his work on an ESRC funded project, which investigates knowledge linkages between UK motorsport and cleantech.

The aim is to get a better understanding of the enablers of, and barriers to, successful knowledge transactions and to explore implications for sustainability transitions and innovation policy.

His PhD project critically investigated the role of personal networks for knowledge flows in innovative clusters. This led him to conduct a detailed survey and also interviews with R&D workers in the Cambridge IT Cluster.

Although the Global Enterprise and Entrepreneurship masters degree leadership role takes up much of his time, Franz is also active in two research groups: the Strategy research group and the Entrepreneurship research group.

Franzs Global Enterprise and Entrepreneurship masters degree was praised by former student Sawanet Vongpan on the University of Southampton Management Schools website.

Sawanet said: The Global Enterprise and Entrepreneurship masters programme provides an excellent combination of learning about the key management theories for enterprise and entrepreneurship, alongside understanding the current business world.

In addition, I have a chance to work with individuals from all over the world. Southampton is the place I was searching for. I could not ask for more! She added.
Southampton Management School has an excellent international reputation for the analytical study of management and business. Studying an MSc Management masters degree, or other postgraduate option, will introduce you to new concepts and knowledge, which can make all the difference in the job market.
All our degrees are taught by research-active academics who are also directly tackling business challenges outside the seminar room and put theory into practice every day.
The Global Enterprise and Entrepreneurship MSc programme (previously known as MSc Strategic Entrepreneurship) is designed specifically to respond to those interested in enterprise and entrepreneurship from a global perspective.

Find out more about the Global Enterprise and Entrepreneurship masters degree by visiting www.southampton.ac.uk/management