Readers' reactions

July 14, 2000

A fortnight ago in The THES...

Brian Brivati suggested Oxford University should be scrapped or privatised.

Geoffrey Thomas


Department for continuing education University of Oxford

For the record, I should like to comment on just one of Brian Brivati's assertions - that Oxford University does not aim to provide lifelong learning.

Last year, Oxford offered 585 courses for lifelong learners. These courses attracted 16,596 students, covering subjects from archaeology to zoology, and ranged from introductory foundation courses to part-time masters degrees. The majority of these courses were part-time and attracted adult students living in the Oxford region or further afield. However, a great deal of provision was also offered to meet the needs of business, industry and the professions, regionally, nationally and internationally, as for example by offering some courses via the internet. In addition, Harris Manchester College and Kellogg College are dedicated to serving the needs of mature students, whether full-time or part-time.

Details of current provision may be found at

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