Proof needed for new entrants

May 26, 2016

We support Jo Johnson’s aspirations, set out in the White Paper, to create a more diverse higher education sector. However, we have some concerns about the proposal to allow new entrants to the sector to have provisional degree awarding powers from day one.

The minister suggests that international universities such as Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology or an Indian Institute of Technology might wish to establish themselves in the UK. It is reasonable that there should be an express route for them in the UK and a reciprocal agreement for British universities in their home countries. They have well-established track records and are clearly financially sustainable. They can demonstrate outputs, employability and proven quality.

There are also established alternative providers that deserve accelerated recognition, particularly if this can be limited to their specific subject experience or level. However, recently established institutions will be unable to demonstrate quality or financial sustainability, and this presents a real risk to students. Protection for them must be specified before these changes go forward.

Aldwyn Cooper, vice-chancellor, Regent’s University London, chair, Independent Universities Group
Philip Hallam , vice-chancellor and CEO, Arden University
Carl Lygo, vice-chancellor, BPP University, vice-chair, Independent Universities Group
Kai Peters, chief executive, Ashridge Business School
Sir Anthony Seldon, vice-chancellor, University of Buckingham
Ashley Wheaton, principal, University College of Estate Management

Send to

Letters should be sent to:
Letters for publication in Times Higher Education should arrive by 9am Monday.
View terms and conditions.

You've reached your article limit

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

PhD Scholar in Medicine

University Of Queensland

Manager, Research Systems and Performance

Auckland University Of Technology

Lecturer in Aboriginal Allied Health

University Of South Australia

Lecturer, School of Nursing & Midwifery

Western Sydney University

College General Manager, SHE

La Trobe University
See all jobs

Most Commented

women leapfrog. Vintage

Robert MacIntosh and Kevin O’Gorman offer advice on climbing the career ladder

Woman pulling blind down over an eye
Liz Morrish reflects on why she chose to tackle the failings of the neoliberal academy from the outside
White cliffs of Dover

From Australia to Singapore, David Matthews and John Elmes weigh the pros and cons of likely destinations

Mitch Blunt illustration (23 March 2017)

Without more conservative perspectives in the academy, lawmakers will increasingly ignore and potentially defund social science, says Musa al-Gharbi

Michael Parkin illustration (9 March 2017)

Cramming study into the shortest possible time will impoverish the student experience and drive an even greater wedge between research-enabled permanent staff and the growing underclass of flexible teaching staff, says Tom Cutterham