I have an Oxford MA but, unlike K. D. M. Snell (THES, August 14). I regard it as as "real" degree, for which I studied hard. I now teach undergraduates who graduate with an MA, as students have done in the four ancient Scottish universities and the two ancient English universities. What surprises me is not that lvor Crewe (THES, August 7) should deprecate the older tradition, but that he has missed the opportunity of recommending that newer universities should get into the entrepreneurial spirit of offering conversion degrees for a fee, which might help relieve their financial problems.
Dennis W. Harding
Department of archaeology