The University of New England is to adopt a trimester system from the beginning of 2012. Vice-chancellor Professor Jim Barber said the decision was motivated by the federal government’s uncapping of student places which meant it was “critical for the university to offer courses that students want to take, and importantly, when they want to take them”. Barber said that by offering a third session semester, students will have the ability to fast track their degrees or spread their study load more evenly over a year. However, the NTEU is opposing the move arguing they need a guarantee that academic staff would not be required to teach across all three semesters. The union has also put a ban on all electronic communication, leaving students in the lurch in regard to the return of assignments.
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