Sunday, June 5, 2016

The Department

"The Department" (1975) is a play by David Williamson about the staff politics in an Australian university engineering department. The staff at the university struggle with inter and intra-departmental rivalries, increasing external scrutiny, student expectations, employer expectations and how to include the requirements for general professional skills (such as literacy) versus technical competences in a crowded curriculum. I was reminded of this play recently when attending a real engineering department meeting. In 40 years since the play was written not much has changed. There is perhaps less student activism on campus, but there are the revolutionary pressures brought about by the Internet. Thanks to the ACT Library for a copy of the play.

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