With the ultimate aim of upgrading the operation of Greek universities, plans are afoot to begin a series of mergers of departments, beginning with the fields of foreign languages and the humanities.
The proposal concerning languages envisions the merging of French, Italian and German language and literature departments into one section.
In a teleconference held among higher education authorities on the subject yesterday, academics expressed the conviction that changes in the foreign language departments are a foregone conclusion, either with the consent of the universities or not.
Among the reason cited was that of reduced student numbers at different departments and the need for a study for the possible restructuring of the schools. Speaking to Kathimerini, academics focused mainly on the French, Italian, German and Spanish sections.
However, the proposal has apparently drawn a negative response from the School of Philosophy at the University of Athens which houses language departments.
What’s more, the proposal has, reportedly, also elicited annoyance from the consulate of an EU country in Greece.
According to the rectorship of the Athens School of Philosophy, “the departments of foreign languages and literatures that operate at the school contribute decisively to the connection of Greece with important partner countries in the EU.”
Furthermore it is said these separate courses are preferred by the students of the respective departments.
“The continuation of the exclusively autonomous operation of all the departments constitutes a unanimous decision of the faculty and a non-negotiable acquis of the University of Athens,” it said, while the meeting reportedly ended in acrimony as some deans protested that not everyone was given the floor.