Education: Guillotining the Grad Schools

The French government cuts back on advanced degree programs

"It's tantamount to killing the university," snapped the president of France's Avignon University, Geologist Joël Mahé. What has aroused Mahé and most of his fellow French university presidents is a decision by France's tough-minded minister of universities, Alice Saunier-Seïté, to cut back proliferating graduate degree programs at the nation's 76 universities, which in France are both accredited and financed by the state.

With little advance warning, Saunier-Seïté chose this academic year as the time to guillotine 1,131 or 30% of all master's and doctoral degree programs, mostly in the humanities and social sciences. Among...

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