A Time(table) to Celebrate!
This year, term 1 timetables were released to students a few days before Welcome Week and just over a week before term started. This just isn’t enough time for students to prepare for studying and adjusting to a new life timetable. There are many reasons why it happened this way. For example, extension of the 20/21 Academic Year, pressures on staff time and availability, Covid guidance and there being little time in between the end of one academic year and start of the next.
However, this is not a new issue for SRUC. Timetables are often sent to students late in the Summer. It is an existing issue which was exacerbated due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
So, what did SRUCSA do about it?
Amy (Central Faculty Co-President) spoke to students about the issue then made a report explaining why students (and staff!) deserve and need to have timetables sent in sufficient time:
“It is no longer that case that, during the week, a student is either engaged in study, or with nothing else to do. Our students are now parents, care givers, bar workers, volunteers or running their own business. Learning has also changed; although our students may be enrolled as “full-time”, they are not engaged in synchronous learning and teaching 9am-5pm Monday to Friday. Receiving a timetable begins a cascade of further processes for staff and students. It can mean contacting employers and carers as well as making family and travel arrangements.”
SRUCSA proposed that SRUC introduce a policy which introduces deadlines at key stages in the timetabling process. The key element is a final deadline for the release of timetables (for all terms/semesters and exam periods).
The report was taken to the November 2021 Academic Board. We are delighted to say that the members agreed to take action! SRUCSA has kept class reps up to date throughout, so hopefully this isn’t new news! We are currently anticipating a plan from Jamie Newbold (SRUC Academic Director) at the next Academic Board in May 2022. Watch this space for an update!
All in all, this is a great step forward for both students and staff at SRUC. Thank you very much to all the students who provided testimonies, to the other institutions and Students’ Associations who helped provide example policies, and to the Academic Board for agreeing to take action!
Central Faculty Co-President