Abertay super schools may mean job losses

July 31, 1998

JOBS may go at Dundee's Abertay University as a result of a four-year structural overhaul that has created four "super schools" out of seven.

A spokesman confirmed this week that jobs could be lost after the university approved the move to concentrate all 23 subject areas in four schools of social and health sciences: computing; accountancy, law and business administration; and science and engineering.

But he said that there were no firm plans to axe posts. If there were, the university would hope to achieve all redundancies by natural wastage.

Abertay started restructuring shortly after it gained university status four years ago. The new structure will be in place by September.

It is anticipated that there will be about 1,000 students in each of the new schools. Principal and vice-chancellor Bernard King said that the increased administrative and staffing flexibility created would allow the university to adapt rapidly to student demand for new courses. Abertay recently introduced degrees in computer games technology and virtual reality which proved extremely popular.

Abertay may face further changes as a result of a separate review into patterns of course provision at Scottish universities. The review, funded by the Scottish Higher Education Funding Council, could mean the transfer of courses between Abertay and neighbouring Dundee University.

And an interim options report at Dundee has recommended the transfer of the university's management and consumer studies courses to Abertay.

Spokesmen for Abertay admit that recruitment to traditional engineering courses, such as civil and mechanical engineering, has been in long-term decline. Although a direct swap of courses between the institutions is unlikely there could be a rebalancing of provision to their mutual benefit.

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