Yesterday the Swedish National Agency for Higher Education released an evaluation of the archaeology programs offered at eight of the country’s universities and colleges.
The most dramatic finding was that three of the eight offer programs of dubious quality that will be subjected to in-depth evaluation:
- All programs in Visby.
- All programs in osteology and the PhD program in Mediterranean archaeology in Lund.
- All programs in osteology and the PhD program in lab-based archaeology in Stockholm.
This means that all Swedish programs in osteology are possibly sub-standard.
More generally, the evaluation concludes that most of the programs offered are good, though they are very different.
“The programs appear to be put together according to whatever specialists each department has on its staff. The future professional needs of the students should be allowed to influence content more. The various programs also embody remarkably different opinions about what an archaeologist needs to know”, says Anders Flodström, head of the agency.
As I’ve said many times, the future professional needs of the students have nothing to do with archaeology as an overwhelming majority of them will never work in that business. And thus it is immaterial if the various programs are similar or not. Indeed, to get asses in seats you need to offer Tut-Ankh-Amen stuff, not the grubby realities of the tiny labour market out on the highway projects.
Thanks to LL for the tip-off.