May 2014


‘… the echo of words, the inaudible friction of thoughts.’

[José Saramago, The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis]

A while ago Graham Gibbs came to the half-day Queen Mary Learning and Teaching conference to talk about the problem of measuring quality in undergraduate education, and a lack of valid systems of measurement. I’d read his article (Dimensions of Quality, Gibbs, G. 2010), liked it, but then wondered if this wasn’t a very utilitarian approach, with all the problems inherent in a Benthamite philosophical system. In the end all this measuring, all it tells you is how accurate your ruler is, no?