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Last minute plea for peers to amend higher education bill

Julia Goodfellow, president of Universities UK, and Joy Carter, chairwoman of GuildHE, have written a letter urging the House of Lords to fix “flaws” in the higher education and research bill.

The bill receives its second reading in the House of Lords today. As it stands, it would allow untested organisations to award degrees much more quickly and without robust, independent scrutiny of their suitability, they warn in a letter to The Guardian newspaper.

Members of both organisations are concerned about the potential for the secretary of state to intervene in areas such as academic standards and course funding, and they reject proposals that a government body, rather than an existing higher education provider, should be able to underwrite degrees awarded by a new provider, they said.

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