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December 6, 2001 Letters





We welcome your letters, opinions and comments at BC-121/1463 Bishop St., by fax (514-848-2814), or e-mail (barblak@alcor.concordia.ca) by 9 a.m. on the Friday prior to publication.

Suggestions for better ranking

In the Nov. 8 issue of the Thursday Report you tried to prepare us to expect the worst from the Maclean’s annual rankings of Canadian universities. This year’s ranking as reported in the Nov. 19 issue of Maclean’s is no exception in conveying the bad news to Concordians. This year we have been pushed to the bottom (11th) of the ranking list of comprehensive universities, replacing last year’s occupant of the infamous position, Regina University, which has moved up to the 7th rank. Last year we were at number 9.

We may argue and question the validity of the Maclean’s findings, or ignore it altogether, or take appropriate actions which might improve our chances of faring better in the future. Very often, I wonder if in some way Concordia is fundamentally different from those universities that do better in the ranking study. I do not know what is happening in other universities, but I sincerely believe that if Concordia adopts any one of the following necessary steps then we might to do better:

1. Get rid of the Concordia University Faculty Association.

2. In certain Faculties, like the John Molson School of Business, dismantle the departmental structure. Departments create boundaries real or imaginary. It is impossible to cross them. They throttle creativity and encourage greed and elitism.

3. Encourage faculty members to teach those courses they can most effectively teach even in departments (or Faculties) other than their own.

4. Make the entire process of reappointment, merit, tenure and promotion transparent.

5. Abolish tenure.

I wonder how many potential students may be discouraged to apply to Concordia after reading the article in Maclean’s about university rankings for 2001. I know many of the currently enrolled students, particularly exchange students from overseas, are not very happy, to say the least. We owe it to our students to keep on trying our best to improve Concordia’s position in the ranking list. At the end of the day, they are really the ones who are affected if the potential employers take any notice of Maclean’s annual rankings of Canadian universities.

S.K.Goyal, Professor, Department of Decision Sciences & MIS,
John Molson School of Business