Victoria University just can’t seem to satisfy its appetite for reconstruction. Like Rutherford House and the Te Aro Campus, not even the trimester is safe, and trimesters two and three look set for “redevelopment”.
A proposal to extend trimester three by one week to create a 12-week summer trimester is on the cards. This extension will only be possible if the mid-trimester two break is cut in half, from two weeks to one.
In recent Academic Board papers, the proposal was put forward to make “better use of trimester three”, at the expense of the mid-trimester two break.
By lengthening trimester three, the University hopes to increase the number of its taught Master’s programmes from 8 per cent to 19 per cent, and increasing teaching options and facilities for trimester 3 courses.
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However, the idea of giving up a week of the mid-trimester break did not go down well with students. While students saw the long-term benefits of extending trimester three, they could not see any benefits of a curtailed break.
“Does the value of creating more time in trimester three outweigh the benefits of a week less break for students? I don’t think so,” one student said.
VUWSA’s main concern remains around the consultation period for the changes—during which most students were busy studying.
VUWSA Academic Vice-President Jonathan Gee said that “reducing the break means that students will have to choose between earning money or working towards a good grade in an assignment, as the reduced break doesn’t allow for both”.
In response, VUWSA has launched a survey asking students for input on the proposed changes.
If approved, the changes will come into effect in 2017.