Wolverhampton unveils longer study modules

Students at the University of Wolverhampton are being promised the chance to become digitally literate "global citizens" ready for the job market under a revised curriculum.

The university will introduce a new undergraduate portfolio in September, following discussions with businesses, public-sector employers and students.

Longer modules will produce a curriculum centred on three attributes, with the aim of producing graduates who are confident using digital technology, knowledgeable and enterprising, and aware of their ethical responsibilities.

Caroline Gipps, the university's vice-chancellor, said the changes involve "reviewing and reassessing the entire undergraduate portfolio".

"In common with many new universities in our situation - large, locally serving universities - we have been offering a very broad range of courses and modules. We felt that the whole offer was getting too complicated," she said. "Another driver was our students, who were saying that, broadly, the experience they get here is very good but there is some variability in the quality of what we offer. We link that with there being an awful lot of modules, quite a lot without significant numbers of students."

Professor Gipps said a switch from 15-credit to 20-credit modules was a key change. She also pointed to the new Institute of Gaming and Animation as an example of how the revised undergraduate portfolio would help students.

Whereas students interested in computer-game design have traditionally had to choose between IT and art and design courses, the new institute brings the two strands together.

Professor Gipps added that on top of international exchanges, the university would expand interaction between its overseas and British students, helping both to understand key global issues such as climate change and the financial crisis.

"I'm hoping that the new portfolio will give us a real cutting edge in the West Midlands and provide students with experiences that will make them even more employable," she said.

john.morgan@tsleducation.com.

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