Web Analytics Trust People (once an Englishman in Philly): Prescient? Me?

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Prescient? Me?

Having just blogged on the potentially negative impact of the Tory "Gold List" on campaigning and the question of whether the Party would have the capital to oppose positive discrimination in future, what happens? I stumble across this piece over at Tim Worstall's about this story in the Torygraph.

It appears that the Government's endless tinkering in Oxbridge admissions has resulted in the removal of the 800 year old tradition of colleges being autonomous bodies which decide their own admissions. Instead of tutors in specific subjects in specific colleges choosing the students they will teach, the great bureaucracies of the faculties will whirr into life with their tickboxes, their equal representation strategies and their centrally-imposed diktats as to the composition of male, female, black, white, Muslim, Christian students. Can the party which I see as the party of true meritocracy oppose it all, or even speak out with regret at the culmination of Labour's control-freakery? No. All the arguments being deployed in favour of the Gold List apply just as equally to this regressive step.

The only hope for Oxbridge colleges being anything different from glorified US halls of residence is that bastion of democracy, the University Parliament. Let's hope they stand firm to their principles.


At 2:54 pm, Blogger Ken said...

I'm not convinced, actually. I don't think that the system proposed is any better than the system at the moment, because that would wreck the college system. But there are ways around it. I think it's difficult to justify a system where borderline candidates have a better chance of getting in if they apply to the colleges with a lower rate of applications. If you still maintained a system where people chose a first choice college, but faculties were able to take everyone they wanted, I think the system would be much stronger.

At 7:57 am, Blogger Edward said...

I'm not dogmatic about it, but I see quotas becoming all but public as soon as admissions is centralised and have serious issues with any sort of quota in this circumstance. I don't know the Oxford situation, but the pool at Cambridge does a good job of stratifying standards across colleges.


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