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The value of UK universities

The value of UK universities

The value of UK universities

This animation, narrated by broadcaster Gabby Logan, showcases the many ways in which universities contribute to the UK economy, society, and to people’s everyday lives. By developing highly skilled graduates, helping businesses innovate and carrying out life-changing research, universities provide the building blocks for a successful society.
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  1. Both colleges and students main focus is to get the degree and not the knowledge. They are altering their learning just to achieve high grades in the exam itself and not embracing the subject as a whole. If students think a certain topic isn't included in the exam they don't bother learning it, meanwhile our economy pays for their dodgy strategies as businesses are under the belief that these people have a basic all round understanding of the subject which they don't.

  2. 80% of degrees are a waste of time now. Colleges and universities care about their profits, nothing else. They are there just to keep people in employment. Everyone has a degree now.

  3. This video is, to put it bluntly, a pack of lies, misrepresentations and unsubstantiated assertions. Please present the evidence that higher education (HE) enhances the "skills" (I.E. economic productivity) of those who undergo it proportionately to its costs. To be clear, cite the studies that use matched controls to demonstrate a substantial benefit of HE; I don't even stipulate that they be randomised controls. Incidentally, how have you calculated the contribution of £73 billion pa to the economy?

    The Demand for HE
    Tony Blair's government set an arbitrary target in 1999 of having 50% of the UK population graduate. This has lead to the prevalence of HE more than doubling across the past couple of decades and NOT because of demand from employers but because the younger generation are now forced to get degrees to work in professions that the older generation already work in without. In my own industry, I had to get a very specific degree to advance, while the older generation require qualifications equivalent of no more than A-levels. This process is also ongoing… as of 2013, UK nurses are required to have degrees, the same will be true of UK police as of 2020. As far back as 2010, the Association for Graduate Recruiters were actually calling for the 50% target to be scrapped (01).

    The Cost
    Meanwhile, tuition fees have increased 9-fold (no exaggeration whatsoever) between 2006 and 2012 (02)… which is contributing to astronomical inter-generational inequity, with the average student now graduating with debts >£44,000 according to the IFS (03). In the UK, >£10 billion is loaned to students annually and “the Government expects the value of outstanding loans to reach over £100 billion in 2018 and continue to increase in real terms to around £330 billion (2014-15 prices) by the middle of this century” (04). In cash terms, that is actually £1 trillion by 2050 (i.e. pure insanity).

    Student Satisfaction
    According to the 2015 nationally representative survey of >15,000 current UK students, 29% think their degree is poor or very poor value for money and "with the benefit of hindsight, one-third (34%) of undergraduates would ‘definitely’ or ‘maybe’ have chosen a different course" (05). This equates, in one year alone, to ~500,000 who may regret their costly investment. Under-employment is increasing and this is likely to be exacerbated by the ever-increasing number of UK graduates, with a CIPD report from 2015 finding a “high percentage of graduates (58.8%) in non-graduate jobs” (06). Even assuming that the HE process is directly responsible for the earnings benefit, rather than factors such as selective admission by universities, a great many graduates are clearly not advantaged by their qualifications.

    The 750,000 jobs "generated" presumably just refers to those employed within HE, which is wasted human effort unless you can demonstrate a benefit. My 6 years of HE did not equip me with any useful skills or knowledge. I transiently memorised enormous numbers of facts, only to forget them again simply because the HE process is indifferent to how we are evolutionarily predisposed to learn and the facts were irrelevant to my future professional work. I only went to university because I was forced to to advance my career; it wasted years of my life. As student attendance is indirectly forced, with the threat of lifelong financial penalties, the HE industry does not need to be effective to survive, unlike other industries.

    Please believe me when I say the above is only skimming the surface of my critique of HE. I welcome any debate.

    (01) BBC News (09/03/2010), Call to scrap 50% university student target.

    (02) Paul Bolton (5/10/2015), Briefing Paper Number 917 – Tuition Fees Statistics, House of Commons Library.

    (03) Crawford & Jin, (April 2014) Institute of Fiscal Studies, IFS Report R93

    (04) Paul Bolton, 2016, Student Loan Statistics. UK House of Commons Library. Briefing Paper No. 1079

    (05) HEPI-HEA Student Academic Experience Survey (2015)

    (06) CIPD, 2015, Over-qualification and skills mismatch in the graduate labour market. Policy Report.

  4. All well and good exept when these same people then think they want to be elitest and join the ranks of the EVIL and SEDITIOUS COMMON PURPOSE. If you are a student turn away from this evil organisation and also persuade your friends that this organisation is simply a part of the Frankfurt School of Subversion to destroy the UK. Follow David Noakes for more information on the destruction this evil organisation does in the UK with Universtity graduates.

  5. I wonder why universities not schools make the difference? Because they set the foundation for university education? Twelve long years to set a foundation, to make people learn the basics of some subjects so they become able to choose one at uni? Really? Twelve years to get to that goal? We would be better off if we could go to school and finish off at the age of 12 max. School people will get 6 years to select from their material the most important to teach our students. After that universities could pick up those students and design some special, out of the ordinary, practice oriented classes for say 2 years to prepare those students for uni enrollment at the age of 14.

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  7. Check out our new video showcasing contribution of universities to the UK economy & society ~

  8. New animation: The value of UK universities