A La Trobe University Shepparton campus student has urged the vice-chancellor not to treat its regional students as second-class citizens.ALEXANDRA BOLKAS May 9, 2014 2:59am
Changes concern: La Trobe Shepparton students Russell Taylor and Linda Marikar are worried the university's restructure could affect their course delivery and teacher contact hours.
Bachelor of Arts student Ashlee Hadfield was among more than 15 others from the Shepparton campus to voice concerns about course delivery in a forum the university’s vice chancellor and colleagues hosted on Wednesday.
The interactive forum at the university’s Bundoora campus was video-linked to campuses including Mildura, Bendigo, Albury and Shepparton.
The forum was organised in conjunction with the university’s student union.
It aimed to address student concern about the university’s restructure in a bid to save $65
This year vice-chancellor Professor John Dewar announced the university’s five faculties would be combined into two colleges in October and 350 full time jobs would be cut.
They would be known as the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Commerce and the College of Science, Health and Engineering.
Ms Hadfield said she attended the forum because she was concerned the university was making sweeping changes without consulting Shepparton students.
‘‘I’m worried there are changes being made without consultation to the regional campuses,’’ she said.
‘‘The vice-chancellor said the changes were being made in consultation with the Student Advisory Panel, but there are no Shepparton students on that panel.’’
Ms Hadfield said she was worried face-to-face contact hours were being dropped as the university shifted towards blended learning, including online instruction and video conferencing.
‘‘We’re not second-class students — the change to blended learning will mean we’re not receiving the same level interaction,’’ she said.
‘‘We pay the same fees as Bundoora students — if they get face-to-face course delivery we should get the same here.’’
Bachelor of Business and Accounting student Russell Taylor said he was worried his contact hours would be cut next year.
‘‘I live in Strathmerton and travel one hour each way to get to uni — it’s a long way to travel if we’re not getting face-to-face instruction, ‘‘ he said.
He said presently one of his subjects was delivered via video, which made for a difficult learning environment.
Humanities student Linda Marikar said she was also worried about a shift to blended learning.
‘‘There are no room for discussions and discussion is where people generate ideas,’’ she said.
A La Trobe University spokesman said it would continue to meet with students to hear their concerns.
He said the university was committed to its regional presence and no final decision had been made about changes to course delivery.
Shepparton’s Declo Bisimwa firmly believes education is the key to a better life.
Beautiful weather greeted Tungamah residents for the 18th running of the Tungamah Lions Ten Thousand on Sunday.
When Keith and Marion Grumley and their growing family moved to Tatura on January 18, 1968, little did they know that it would be the start of a long and lasting connection to the town.
Garners Boxing Gym in Echuca is encouraging young people to get active with weekly boxing/cardio classes.
Rochester Rotary Club has celebrated its 50th birthday in style.
Sorting future of Campaspe pools
A theatre production with a difference is coming to Seymour.
Local athletes will go head-to-head with some of the best competitors from around the world in swimming and athletics in December.
District residents and visitors will be able to enjoy some of the region’s most beautiful private gardens on Sunday.
The 116th annual Cobram Show went off with a bang at the weekend, drawing in crowds from far and wide for two days of fun.
Tomorrow is a Total Fire Ban day in Deniliquin, meaning no fires can be lit in the open and all fire permits are suspended.
Fifty new full-time jobs will be created at Tatura with a multimillion-dollar expansion of the abattoirs expected to be announced today.
Remembering Australian political giant Gough Whitlam who once called on Benalla police to stop then Treasurer Frank Crean on his journey up the Hume to phone the PM.
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