Lack of Student Reps Lessened Workshop's Impact

October 06, 2011

In spite of the organizers’ wish to have student input at the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) undergraduate education workshop in Halifax last spring, a low turnout reduced the impact of students’ contributions.

As a result, “a huge opportunity was lost to have a more fully informed discussion and a greater student ‘voice’ in the AUCC’s final report,” says VP Academic Jon Driver.

“Our student rep Deanna Rogers and the other 15 or so undergraduates there all made excellent contributions”, says Driver.

“It was the overall small number that was the problem. Many universities didn’t participate and not all that did brought students. Having more there could have provided important insights into the student experience of post-secondary learning.”

The lack of student input may also be a reason the final workshop report was “less galvanizing than it could have been,” he adds.

“They were talking about transforming undergraduate education and the people who know best what undergraduates want are the students,” says Rogers, a recent geography graduate who also earned a sustainable community development certificate and completed the Undergraduate Semester in Dialogue.

“I’ve been thinking critically about education and engaging with it and trying to understand pedagogy for the last couple of years, and I enjoyed the opportunity to share my insights and take part in the workshop.”

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