Wetenschap - 1 februari 1996

Time pressure has organisational causes

Time pressure has organisational causes

The time constraints felt by many foreign students in the MSc programmes are mainly due to the way the seventeen months are organised. International students have very different backgrounds. Compulsory basic courses may be new and valuable for one student but are child's play to the other. Some students have a clear idea of what they want to learn, whereas others have to figure this out in the course of their study. The path to thesis writing is often unclear, as are the possibilities concerning choice of subject.

These are the major points which emerged from the MSc programme evaluation by MSc students about to graduate, organized last Wednesday, January 24th, by the Dean's Office. It was recommended that a more flexible and individual approach, taking into account the background of students, would lead to improvement. Several concrete recommendations were made. Students should be able to obtain exemption from certain compulsory courses based on a prior examination. The first part of the programmes should consist of a mixture of basic and disciplinary courses. Finally a suggestion was made that an information market should be held during the MSc introduction period, where departments could present themselves, the courses they offer in English and possible thesis subjects.

The facilities available both in terms of hardware and human resources were positively evaluated. The services offered by the Dean's office in particular are highly appreciated.