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Government urged to review universities at UCU Scotland conference

26 March 2010

The future of universities' role in Scotland, academic freedom, Facebook, student feedback and job losses are all on the agenda at the UCU Scotland Congress.

The union is expected to call on the Scottish Government to initiate an inquiry into the future of Scottish universities. Other motions attack the creeping privatisation and targets culture in Scottish universities, the undermining of academic freedom and the use of social networking sites and anonymous student evaluation questionnaires in disciplinary procedures.

Fears over job losses will be a central theme to the meeting as UCU members from across Scotland meet in Aberdeen to consider the next steps in campaigns to save jobs and fight education funding cuts. Redundancies in teacher education are likely to be explored in depth by delegates.

The congress will be opened by UCU Scotland President, Lesley McIntosh, who will say: 'The academy is under threat from managers at all levels who want to introduce an ever greater pro-business agenda, which is an anathema to academic freedom. This agenda also stifles the scholarship and research that is crucial for a democratic nation.'

'Cabinet Secretary, Michael Russell, should initiate a review that considers not only future funding but also the wider place for universities in a modern Scotland. If Scotland is to grow as a nation it needs to invest in an independent intellect, not cut jobs and teacher numbers or impose failed business models.'

Last updated: 11 December 2015