29 April 2007

UCQ defends itself.

The University of Central Queensland (UCQ), Melbourne campus has gone into defence mode this week, publishing "The Economic Benefits of CQU Melbourne Campus to Victorian GDP " on its website. In recent weeks the campus has had very bad press, following student protests against the large number who failed a final year accounting exam. Patrick O'Keefe, RMIT Student Union President reported in Melbourne Indy Media that "a vast majority of students enrolled in this course have been failed by the University, following an examination which tested students on material not covered in the course material, or included within the syllabus. Today [March 30th] marks the final day that students can re-enrol in the subject, for which the University is charging an extra $2,000. This is despite the fact that students have already paid $24,000 to complete the two year course."

The plight of UCQ accounting students has been widely reported in Australia and has even reached The Times of India. The message is clear. Students should choose their University and course very carefully, and not just enrol in a course because the occupation is currently on the Australian MODL (occupations in demand) list.

As a local Melbournite I find it difficult to understand why anyone would want to study at the CQU Melbourne campus. When you look at University rankings, CQU is well down the list. For example in the"The Australian" teaching performance 2005 rankings UCQ ranked 35th. Why would you go to a 35th ranked University when the location, fees and living costs for Universities in the top ten are much the same?

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