ANU has announced a major restructuring of its Bachelor of Music program from the start of 2013, which will see 10 of the school’s 23 jobs cut.
The university says that, under the proposed new model, students can, for the first time, receive academic credit for contributions to musical activities in Canberra and beyond. ANU will build on the already significant technological advances that connect students with master classes, other students and innovations at world-class music schools, across Australia and overseas.
The revitalised program will strengthen opportunities for students to develop the skills needed across a range of music jobs. Other unique features are proposed as well:
- a Professional Development Allowance (PDA) that will be allocated to students, allowing them to choose between specialist one-to-one tuition, attending a summer course, master class or conference, or learning a new piece of music software, and
- real-time, video-linked lessons and sessions with the support of the Manhattan School of Music.
“The new program acknowledges the fact that successful 21st century music professionals engage in a broad range of activities as they build their careers. They need to be highly-skilled creative artists, who are business and technology savvy, with entrepreneurial skills and a good basis in teaching practice.
However, the university observes that the review of base funding confirmed that government funding does not cover the costs of one-to-one music tuition, let alone buying instruments or providing appropriate teaching rooms, and that the proposed model is one that is “financially sustainable”.
As a smaller group of staff will be required to run the new offerings, to achieve the necessary reduction:
….all academic and general staff positions in the School of Music will be declared vacant and applications invited for the new positions.
Ten of the school’s 23 academic positions are to be cut, according to The Canberra Times. It is not yet clear how the restructure will affect the nine full-time general staff, nor how it will affect the 40 part-time specialist staff and tutors.
The objective is to wipe out $1.3 million of the school’s annual $2.7m deficit, but is separate to the broader $40m cost cuts planned at the university (The Australian 4 May).
The school has 260 students. Current students have been guaranteed they can complete the course they started at the university. Students enrolling from next year will begin a new course under the revised curriculum.
This could prove interesting – see the Victorian College of the Arts Dust-up 2010.