Degrees of fashion 1

October 26, 2007

There is a simpler solution than the Burgess report to the problems of a degree classification that is "not fit for purpose", and the associated issue of grade inflation: bring back sit-down closed book examinations as the central element of student assessment.

The current fashion for increasingly novel coursework as assessment that tests teamwork, self-presentation and time management (skills only marginally related to academic excellence) has not only contributed to grade inflation: its tedious and time-consuming nature also takes students away from the core feature of higher education learning, that is, "reading" for a degree.

Rob Lowe, County Durham

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