LETTER: New universities underfunded

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The Independent Online
From Mr Raymond H. Brunskill

Sir: Fran Abrams correctly states "in chemistry, computer science and history, only one department in the entire former polytechnic sector was found to be excellent".

As head of that one department, I am well placed to comment on the assumption that teaching quality is directly related to research rating. High research ratings attract additional funding which enable a higher level of resource to be deployed. It is likely that teaching quality is directly related to total funding rather than research rating.

The recent quality assessment exercise carried out in computer science at Scottish universities concluded that the computer science teaching was underfunded across all Scottish universities. As a result, Scottish universities have been given additional funds. Since only 10 per cent of computer science departments assessed by the Higher Education Funding Council for England were rated excellent, it is apparent that funding for computer science in all institutions needs to be increased.

Yours faithfully,

Raymond H. Brunskill

Dean, School of Computing

and Mathematics

University of Teesside

Middlesbrough, Cleveland