In December 2006 the Royal Society submitted evidence to the House of Commons Education and Skills Select Committee inquiry on the Bologna Process. Our submission emphasised the following key points:
- As a signatory to the Bologna Process, the UK Government must engage seriously with the implications of Bologna for the UK higher education (HE) system. An in-depth and holistic consideration of the advantages and disadvantages of the present Bologna proposals and full involvement in the ongoing Bologna negotiations are imperative if UK HE institutions are to be actively involved in implementing Bologna reforms.
- We believe that the Bologna Process has the potential to act as a driver for change more generally in UK HE: the process provides an opportunity for the UK to consider more broadly whether our current system is delivering what students, employers, the economy and wider society need from its graduates.
- It is essential that the Government consults widely with the learned societies and professional bodies that are considering the place of the UK integrated masters courses and one-year masters courses on a subject-specific level and works to clarify the status of both these qualifications within the Bologna Process.
- The Bologna Process could have profound consequences for the flows of students and graduates within Europe and beyond. It is important that consideration is given to how the UK engages with the Bologna developments to maximise these opportunities for the nation.