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  • City of Glasgow College

    I heard from a friend that a lot of sponsoring companies (Maersk, Carnival...) don't allow their cadets to study there because the standard of teaching is not as good as the other maritime colleges. Is this really the case?

    I'm coming to the end of my first phase as a deck cadet and have been pretty appalled by some of the teaching. Constant confusion over timetabled classes and rooms, lecturers who can hardly speak English, other lecturers who can't answer questions, just read out of poorly constructed course documents. We study 8 different units in phase 1 and only 3 are taught to an adequate standard. It's too late for me to switch, I know that, but I want to know if other colleges are much better?

  • #2
    Hi

    Normally I would say that all the colleges go through varrying periods of quality based upon the lecture staff, for example when I started it was another college that had a pretty poor reputation. Yes some companies are aware of this and do actively avoid some colleges, no one here can say for certain but you must raise your concerns with the college / your company if you feel strongly (it is worth getting a few of your classmates onboard to have some weight to your arguement -and ensure you leave emotions out of it and stick to the facts).

    When doing my masters orals prep we had a lecturer who was below standard, as a group we submitted a well balanced submission to the college management and got another lecturer - so things can change.

    Hope the above helps

    Chris
    Pilotage - It's just a controlled allision

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    • #3
      We had the same problems regarding teaching, timetables (or lack of timetables should I say), double booked classrooms, late lecturers both in Phase 1 & 3. Raised the issue with CMT and sponsor companies. Heading back to college for Phase 5 soon and by the sound of it nothing has changed :-/ They blame the merger but the problems where there before the merger....

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      • #4
        I am also a cadet (deck) at the City of Glasgow College and can only echo the above comments about the quality of the place. I have just finished my second sea phase and I am due to go back in a couple of months for orals prep and short courses...looking forward to see how much they can screw things up this term. Some examples of things I have experienced in my first 2 college phases:

        Lecturers not turning up or being late. It is no exaggeration to say that this happens on an almost daily basis. To be fair to them, they are massively overworked. I know a lot of them are working without lunch breaks due to a shortage of lecturers but then it has been like that since I started, it should?ve been sorted by now.

        The absurd timetable system whereby unlike every other academic institution I have ever experienced, they issue timetables on a weekly basis instead of for the whole term. They are supposed to be issued on a Friday but often aren't until the Monday they are due to start! This obviously results in people turning up in the wrong rooms for the wrong class with the wrong equipment. I have yet to hear a satisfactory explanation for this set-up and as far as I know none of the other colleges operate this way

        Really poor quality of teaching with many lecturers who have a poor command of the English language and have no idea how to actually keep control of and teach a class. As far as I am aware there is no requirement to have a teaching qualification to do the job, just a master's ticket. I find this astonishing.

        One particularly memorable occasion that I remember was during a maths exam. We were somewhat baffled by a couple of the questions and upon asking our lecturer (who was also invigilating the exam) he realised he had 'forgotten' to teach us part of the course! Cue a panicked 5 minute run through on how to complete the question, which included him holding up someone's answer and saying "this is how you should do it". He then checked everyone's answer to that question before he let us leave the room and told anyone who had got it wrong how to correct it. We complained about this to the college and inexplicably, instead of disciplining said lecturer and making everyone do the exam again as I'm sure any reputable institution would've done, they let the exam results stand! And anyone who failed on the basis of the part that hadn't been taught correctly only had to resit that one question! I still don?t know how they got away with that.

        The general set up of the course and the schedule is unnecessarily demanding. Towards the end of phase one it is common to have an exam almost every day for about three weeks, which obviously is a ridiculous work load and results in the majority of people failing a couple and having to resit them. Any resits then pile up with the other exams you have to do and cause even more failures. Luckily I passed them all, although the nature of doing so many exams in such a short period of time meant that I very quickly forgot a lot of the stuff I had been taught. Having spoken to other cadets at different colleges during my sea phases I know for a fact other colleges do not have so many exams in such a short period of time and I think there is a bit more emphasis on coursework. None of our subjects were assessed via coursework, it was all exam based. I'm certain that this set up and the massive exam pressure resulted several in otherwise capable cadets failing multiple exams and dropping out as a result.

        There are a multitude of other issues with the place and I could go on all day about it, but that will give you a rough idea.

        Having said that, there are still a few decent lecturers but they are in the minority. I personally would not recommend the college to anyone and have advised other people considering this career to go elsewhere for their education. I have also heard that most of the big companies don't send cadets to Glasgow anymore and I do not know anyone who is sponsored by anyone other than Clyde or SSTG. We have complained to our sponsoring companies about several of these issues on more than one occasion but nothing ever seems to change. If anything the place has got worse since I started and I didn?t think that was possible.

        I have no idea what the other colleges are like really but I doubt they are as bad as this.

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        • #5
          I'm a phase 3 cadet at COGC and I agree with everything that has been said so far. I haven't heard of any companies not sending cadets to Glasgow because of the standard but if it was true, I wouldn't really be surprised.

          They had huge cutbacks some time ago and then the merger occurred. We have a new head of school who will try their hardest to right the wrongs but it's a tough task.

          If I qualify and decide to go for my chief mates I'll be going somewhere else, unless there's an improvement over the next couple of years.

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          • #6
            Glasgow college is totally tuned towards Indian cadets, this is because they get more money for them.

            Even then you hear a lot of them complain about the standard.

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            • #7
              As Chris said above, all the colleges go through phases of good and bad at times one can be considered the better college for deck cadets and another the best for engine cadets, but this seems to change, not necessarily from year to year, but from time to time certainly. Glasgow was at one time considered by far the best college for engine cadets, and at another time many comapnies refused to send engine cadets to Warsash so things do change, unfortunately there is not likely to be much change in the short term for those who are studying at a college which is struggling at the minute.
              Go out, do stuff

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              • #8
                in words of the movie on film 4 just now
                "i say we pull out and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure"

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                • #9
                  Haha! We've got that on here, that was the one line that I actually heard properly!

                  Size4riggerboots

                  Moderator
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Lewis View Post
                    in words of the movie on film 4 just now
                    "i say we pull out and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure"
                    is that starship troopers?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Fergus View Post
                      is that starship troopers?
                      Aliens I believe

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by TomB View Post
                        Aliens I believe
                        Oh man of course! Can't believe I missed that. Game over man! Game over!

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                        • #13
                          The staff have been blaming all the problems on the merger since I started two and a half years ago. This excuse starts to wear extremely thin after a while.

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                          • #14
                            I am in phase 1 as deck cadet. Agree with all that has been said about GCNS. Don't think they could do a worse job of running the course if they tried.
                            Even Calmac have pulled out of Scotland's biggest college.

                            I have spoken to people who have studied here in the 70's and it was bad then but the recent merger into Glasgow College has only made things worse.

                            Over the last 5 months I fell we have learnt very little of relevance to the industry. Some of the lectures barely speak English, others don't want to be there and often don't turn up. For almost the last month there has been nothing taught as subjects have finished yet we have to turn up and twiddle our thumbs.


                            Just hoping the sea phase is more challenging and interesting as not looking forward to returning September to waste another 7 months..

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