Timetable is 'too tight'

June 12, 1998

THE TIMETABLE set by quality watchdogs for trialling a new system for setting standards is too ambitious, Scottish university and college chiefs have warned.

Teams of academics developing definitions of minimum degree pass standards in chemistry, history and law need more than a year to complete their work, the Committee of Scottish Higher Education Principals says.

In its response to the Quality Assessment Agency's consultation paper, Coshep said it recognised that the QAA is trying to keep to the year timescale set by Dearing.

But it adds: "We do not consider that it is realistic, particularly given the experience of earlier work in this area, which has served to illustrate the difficulties associated with this approach."

The response paper says that because the work on benchmarking standards is new, moving on to subjects outside those covered in the pilots should stop until a full evaluation of the trials is completed. The trials should not by default come to be regarded as the first years of the new model.

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