Heads of publishing departments in higher education have formed a group to represent departments to employers and to act as a forum for debate.
The United Kingdom Association of Publishing Educators is chaired by Alistair McCleery, head of print and media at Napier University. It includes the universities of Stirling, Oxford Brookes, Loughborough, London College of Printing and Thames Valley. The group will meet twice a year to discuss the integration of new technologies into academic courses. It will also support research.
In the past ten years there has been an expansion of higher education publishing courses as in-house training delivered by publishing firms declined.
The move has been welcomed by the Publishing Training Centre. Chief executive Dag Smith said: "The problem with the industry is that it is very snooty. They have tended to prefer, say, an Oxbridge graduate with a first in history to someone who has studied publishing at postgraduate level."