So I did and it kept on growing! I initially wrote down my own thoughts such as the need for more University level resources, especially electronic resources, and the fact that Universities have more generous opening hours than colleges. I then opened it up firstly to my work colleagues, one of whom suggested we should have a separate HE budget, and then secondly to my professional peers via various JISCMAIL lists, CILIP's LinkedIn page and the Cofhe Lasec blog. I even asked the potential CILIP counsellors for their opinions in the ehustings. While the responses I received weren't many the ones I did receive were well thought out and detailed. The main consensus seems to be that:
- this is going to become a massive issue as the government continues to tinker with education
- clear communication is vital between the many layers of educational institutions so people, and in particular, students aren't misled
- that it may all become quite fraught with competition between the various providers - see this BBC piece which clearly demonstrates how this is already happening.
So that should have been the end of it (apart from I am still waiting to feed back to the member of senior management) but not so. My esteemed CoFHE LASEC Chair, Helen Stein, is in contact with all the right people at CILIP and the policy team there were considering responding to the QAA consultation on the replacement of the IQER. So we told them that we thought this was a very good idea and then had a couple of days to put something together. Being not directly work-related meant I couldn't do this on work time so my evenings were a little busier that usual to say the least! Anyhow, it has gone through and everyone is happy and when the new version of the IQER is rolled out I can tell myself that I was involved in that. While I don't expect much, I do hope that we have encouraged a few of the powers that be to think a little more about the work that librarians do to support students and the challenges they face in doing so.