Musicians' college is out of tune

January 24, 1997

THE Royal College of Music, the only conservatoire with the power to award its own degrees, has been urged to revamp its "over-complex" quality monitoring system.

Its "centralist approach" to quality assurance has proved to be out of step with its staffing structure and tradition of one-to-one tuition, according to a Higher Education Quality Council report.

Extensive formal committees, an intrinsic part of the RCM's checking regime, were "difficult to sustain" in an institution where just 12 of the 200 academic staff held full-time jobs and three-quarters worked on an hourly-paid basis, the report says.

Members of the RCM's advisory board to director Janet Ritterman failed to display "a clear grasp on where the final responsibility for matters of quality assurance lay".

The RCM declined to comment. It is conducting its own quality in surance review.

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