Students attack university journalism course

Scores of dissatisfied and angry students in the University of Queensland's journalism course have attacked the quality and standards of their program, according to a report in The Australian newspaper. The complaints are from both local and international students. UQ once laid claim to having the best journalism school in Australia, but standards appear to have plummeted since the former Department of Journalism was forced into a bitterly-opposed amalgamation with communication studies and public relations. It resulted in the departure of most senior journalism staff including the head of department and foundation professor, as well as revised courses and fewer practical assignments. The students have expressed their views on a dedicated blogspot site.

Meanwhile, the former Head of the UQ journalism school has struck out on his own and founded a private and now fully accredited Jschool of his own which is having great success at turning out students who are recognized for their skills. See here. Private enterprise beats insane bureaucracy again. Why the UQ powers that be decided they wanted to merge different departments into one super-Department remains something of a mystery. Some old-fashioned "big is better" thinking, apparently. The "small is beautiful" idea has been around for a long time now but has apparently not as yet reached the bureaucratized dinosaurs running UQ. If "big is better", how come General Motors is now on the verge of bankruptcy?

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