Education Letter: The real problem with RAE
Opinions on girls and science, literacy and numeracy tests, Chris Woodhead, the role of research, and falling academic standards
Thursday 11 February 1999
What Lucy Hodges' article on the RAE (Education, 28 January) rather skates over is the adverse impact it is having on genuine research. As the organiser of a regular socialist history seminar at the Institute of Historical Research in London I aim, of course, for maximum academic rigour. At the same time, I also want to encourage non-professional academics to participate since, particularly in the field of labour history, they have an enormous amount to contribute from their own experiences and researches.
I find myself in a constant struggle to retain the integrity of such a seminar against the demand that papers given must always be able to be refereed and published as soon as possible. I am very much in favour of publication, and no slouch at it myself. I am also willing to allow that those who rarely or never publish may also have an enormous amount of interest to contribute.
London Socialist Historians Group
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