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7th November 2013

Disability Studies axed by university

Union Exec are “extremely disappointed” by latest course closure

The university has taken the decision to cut BA Learning Disability Studies from its course programme due to a lack of applicants.

The three-year course, run by the School of Education, will no longer be taking on new students from September 2014.

The decision to shut down the course was taken back in August after a disappointing year in Clearing.

It is not, however, the first course closure carried out by the School of Education in the last year. In October 2012, Applied Community and Youth Work studies was cut from the course programme after it failed to take on any new students for the 2012/13 academic year. The decision resulted in criticism from the Students’ Union Executive and a protest by students studying on the course.

The Exec, in accordance with its election manifesto, are against this latest course closure. In a statement to The Mancunion, Grace Skelton, General Secretary, said

“The Exec team were extremely disappointed to hear of the decision by the University to close the Learning Disability Studies undergraduate course.” She added further that, “The Students’ Union has policy to oppose all course closures.”

At this stage it is unclear whether the Exec will protest against the closure. Skelton has only confirmed that the Exec “will support students on the course going forward in whatever action they may decide to take”.

According to the course guide on the university website, there have been on average 70 applicants each year competing for 30 places. But a spokesman for the School of Education has confirmed that there are currently just 15 students on the course who will continue to receive “the high quality programme and standard of teaching they expect up to the end of the course in three years time”.

When asked by The Mancunion about the future of the academic staff employed on the course, the School of Education issued the following statement:

“We anticipate that current teaching staff will continue to be based at the Manchester Institute of Education and there will be no compulsory redundancies.”

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