A last ditch effort is needed to resolve doubts over proposed degree entry standards under the Engineering Council’s Sartor proposals for the education and training of engineers, a leading academic said this week.
Professor Fred Maillardet, dean of engineering and environmental studies of the University of Brighton, speaking at a forum held by the Smallpeice Trust this week, said the council’s Standards and Routes to Registration proposals relied too heavily on ‘input standards’ – point scores based on A-level grades.
Critics of this reliance on A-level grades as degree course entry standards ‘are not Luddites’ but probably know more about A-levels than those who advocate their use, said Maillardet.
Work in the 1980s, he said, had shown a better correlation between the entry qualifications and degree results of HNC students and mature students than those who took A-levels.
Maillardet called for the ‘equivalence table’ relating A-level grades to other qualifications to be completed so that all qualifications can be assessed and used for entry to degrees; and for output standards to be agreed. These would state what skills, knowledge and understanding students should achieve at the end of their courses and, crucially, would be agreed with industry.