Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Good news for education

The UK news today is full of the 'disaster' that Cambridge University architecture department is to close. This news comes a week after the announcement that Exeter University Chemistry Department is to go.

Amid all the media wailing about Media Studies taking over the country, it occured to me that actually this might be a Good Thing. If Ciba-Geigy and Astra-Zeneca and everyone find they can't recruit good people with chemistry degrees, then presumably they will eventually start offering people low pay for a few years while they train them up as good bench scientists. Same with the big architecture companies. Instead of delegating the task of training a professional work force to the government, companies - who know what knowledge and skills their employees need - will take responsibility for it themselves.

And if lots of people want to study Media Studies, then all power to them. Can't be less 'relevant' than the old war horse of professional advancement - a degree in Classics. If they want to study Media Studies enough, maybe they'll even be prepared to pay for it.


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