Education Forum 2013

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ALSA Education Showcase
Education Report 2013
• Education Board
• Survey of Students
– Survey Monkey
– Emailed by Law School
– 350 responses
• Group of Eight comparisons
• Internal data on Honours and GPAs
Key Issues
•
•
•
•
•
Courses & Electives
Honours
Teaching & Learning
Assessment
Practical Legal Skills
Electives & Compulsory Courses
Key Recommendations
1. Offer a selection of law electives during summer
semester
2. Increase the diversity of law electives
3. Increase the number of elective law courses within the
LLB program by two and decrease the number of
compulsory law courses by two, so that the number of
elective law courses students can undertake is eight; a
number that is not to include any law courses required
for legal admission.
Summer Semester
• UQ has no coursework subjects over summer and is falling
behind other Go8 universities.
University
Summer Semester
UQ
Yes
Number of
Coursework Subjects
0
UNSW
Yes
12
USyd
Yes
13
ANU
Yes
8
UMelb
No
-
Monash
Yes
18
UWA
Yes
2
UAdel
Yes
2
• Students were strongly in favour of summer
courses
Elective Diversity
• Students are dissatisfied with diversity.
Law Electives offered at Go8 Universities’ Law Schools in 2013
University
Number of Electives
UNSW
60
USyd
50
Monash
44
ANU
36
UMelb
30
UWA
23
UAdel
20
UQ
20
Elective-Compulsory Balance
• Again, students dissatisfied with balance
• Two less compulsory, two more elective courses
• UQ fails to meet balance attained by other Go8
universities:
Honours
Key Recommendations
• The Law School take steps to advise students of the current honours system,
keep them abreast of proposed changes to the system and allow for regular
updates as to how the system operates.
• The Law School, where possible, seek to encourage and facilitate student
input into the process of implementing changes to the Honours system in
line with the AQF. Adopt a policy of transparency aimed at ensuring students
are aware of the changes, what those changes will mean, and that no students
are disadvantaged by any changes to the system.
• The Law School should seek to remedy the current comparatively low
number of first class honours recipients. A new method of calculation should
be adopted in the interim aimed at bringing the number of first class honours
recipients in-line with other universities with a no disadvantage policy.
Understanding of Honours Requirements
45
40
35
30
25
Understood
Did not understand
20
15
10
5
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
Response to Preferences as to New Methods of
Honours Calculation
60.00%
50.00%
40.00%
Percentage of Respondents
30.00%
20.00%
10.00%
0.00%
Option 1
Option 2
Option 3
Option 4
1. Stand alone research course counted as an elective, requiring a research paper
2. Larger elements of assessment embedded into current courses
3. A number of assessment pieces spread across a range of courses which were
cumulatively counted toward honours
4. ‘Other’ methods submitted by students
What do you think is more important to gaining
employment: graduating with Honours or your exit GPA?
60
50
40
Percentage of Respondents
30
20
10
0
Honours
Exit GPA
Percentage of Students Awarded First Class Honours
14
12
10
8
Percentage of Students
Awarded First Class
Honours
6
4
2
0
2012 2010 2008 2006 2004 2002 2000 1998 1996 1994 1992 1990 1988 1986 1984
Percentage of First Class Honours at Go8 Universities
2011
2010
2009
2008
2007
Average
4.8%
4.9%
9.4%
6.2%
6.7%
6.4%
USyd
29.3%
30.4%
41%
38.3%
34.75%
UWA
10.1%
9.6%
10.2%
8.9%
9.7%
ANU
15.5%
15.5%
7.8%
9.5%
UQ
Adelaide
11.3%
Griffith
UNSW
10% fixed
7.9%
5.6%
8.3%
9.8%
7.9%
10% fixed
10% fixed
10% fixed
10% fixed
10%
Take-Away
• LSS’s and ALSA should lobby to ensure that:
– There are comparable law electives being offered across
universities in terms of quantity and diversity.
– Course requirements are similar; and that compulsory
versus elective courses percentages are consistent.
– Honours systems are fair and turn out comparable
numbers.
– If new Honours systems are implemented: updates,
consultation with student body, no disadvantage policies.
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