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10 Apr 2002

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I have been meaning to pontificate on the "Myth of the Two Degrees" for a while now and was reminded to do so by a conversation with a young friend here. He's studying tourism and is debating whether to start his second degree in English or computing so as to increase his chances of getting a good job. We're not talking about after his management degree, we're talking about at the same time. Oh yes, and he teaches English about five hours every day - to pay for his studies of course! We found the same thing when we asked why our students in the university English Club are too busy to attend regularly - they're all taking two degrees. Now I don't know about you, but I had trouble fitting in the work for a single degree, what with all the partying a student has to do, so how do they manage here? Well, they don't of course, they just enrol on two courses and turn up occasionally to hand in the odd assignment. Lecturers are sympathetic as long as their fees get paid and they can carry on lining their pockets. Rather than producing students with a basic knowledge in one subject, I fear that the system here is turning them out with minimal skills in two!