ILT recruiting tactics queried

August 25, 2000

Like many other readers, I have pondered this summer whether or not I would support the Institute for Learning and Teaching. However, my mind was made up for me after reading the announcement that the ILT is to give nurses, midwives and health visitors with a recorded teaching qualification a simple form to fill in to fast-track their membership.

Thus, while no experience of working in higher education is necessary for this group of health professionals to obtain membership, those in all other disciplines must have at least three years' experience in higher education and are forced to fill in a rather wearisome application pack. This is in direct conflict with the justification for the creation of the ILT. In Document 5 - Information About Other Routes to Membership, its information pack, the ILT states: "Equally, the ILT must be able to show that all routes to membership require the same level of achievement." Does it make sense for one individual with a teaching qualification, but no experience, to be guaranteed membership simply by filling in a form, while an individual from another discipline who has experience in higher education, and may additionally hold a teaching qualification, is excluded because a small group fails to agree with what was written in their application? It does not. The ILT is either desperate for members, has failed to consider the difficulties of recruiting from certain sectors, or both. Regardless, I have finished pondering.

Steven Butts

Faculty of leisure and tourism

Buckinghamshire Chilterns

University College

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