Replacing the Taught Programmes Offices and School Offices are the brand new ‘hubs’. Each school is assigned to one of four hubs from which they receive support for timetables, registration, module enrolment, student handbooks, coursework submission and course information.
The hubs are located in the Edith Cavell building, the Elizabeth Fry building, the ZICER building and the Arts building and each houses a number of undergraduate and postgraduate schools. Designed to be spacious and student-friendly, the hubs are supposed to be places where staff and students alike, can congregate.
The hubs are connected with the university’s integration project, a planned restructuring by the University to cuts in funding. The University has stated that the previous method of administration for the faculties was unnecessarily complex and expensive, and the new structure should focus skills together to make the University work more effectively.
Some have seen this new arrangement as a response to issues with timetables that occurred in the 2010-11 academic year. With the new system, timetabling will be centralised to avoid problems. One big change for students will be that coursework will no longer be handed in to their school office, but instead to their assigned hub.
This is leading to some concern that coinciding deadlines will cause a backlog of students trying to hand in their work, but the hubs have been designed to handle a large amount of students efficiently. The University has been keen to reassure students that support from advisers and other academic staff will remain within the school of study, and that there are no changes to services provided by the Dean of Students’ Office, Finance Office or the Library.