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#tweetgate

It has emerged that the University are investigating a lecturer who may have contravened exam regulations. It is not possible for us to name the member of staff in question as the investigation is ongoing but it is known that the twitter account does belong to an academic member of staff.

The tweets in question include the comments:

“Student 22 is very cold… But if she will wear a mini-skirt and heels to an exam in January.”

“Student 20 just asked to go to toilet. She went just before the exam. Coffee fuelled emergency cramming I reckon.”

“I never realised exams were so loosely regulated e.g. leaving me in charge of one. It’s disgraceful, really.”

The lecturer in question is a prolific tweeter with over 21,000 tweets. Although unclear whether the tweets were actually written within an exam hall, since the material covered suggests they were and includes personal remarks about students, an investigation has been launched by the University.

Sam Reid, Academic Affairs Officer, said of the situation, “I don’t believe the current Senate guidelines cover tweeting during an exam. If an invigilator was tweeting this is obviously unacceptable. I have reported this to the University and I believe an investigation is underway. I will work with the University to ensure that stricter guidelines are abided by in the future.”

A spokesman for the university stated: “The incident is being investigated by the University, University regulations require invigilators to maintain a constant supervision over all students. Invigilators are informed that no mobile phone usage is permitted in an examination venue and that phones must be switched off.”

Hannah Cave, Final year Journalism, Film and Cultural Studies, student said, “This is unacceptable behaviour, invigilators are placed in a position of responsibility when students are in a vulnerable position. They should not abuse their power. Knowing about this behaviour will make some students more self- conscious and therefore distract them from their exams. Students are there to sit an exam not to be judged.”

Laura Evans, 2nd Year English Literature, student said “Even if the tweets were made from outaside the exam hall, you have to question what sort of a lecturer would make such satirical remarks about students in general.”

As we go to print the investigation is still in progress.

8 Comments

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  • Academics, those teaching at this University; a University that has an excellent reputation and one which both students and teaching staff represent should not be tweeting remarks such as those reported. Not in any situation and particularly not whilst an exam is underway and the Academic is invigilating. It is both unprofessional and unnecessary.

    Tighter regulation should be put in place so that this does not happen in the future.

  • I don’t see that a mistake/error has been made, so none of that is really applicable.

    I’m not an academic member of staff, by the way, I’m not sure why that was assumed.

    There’s no way I would ‘question the integrity of student journalists’, I enjoy the paper, just questioning this one piece!

    • B Bannister, considering that you’re a member of the university, it’s worrying how much you’re missing the whole point of the article.
      The content of the tweets is not really the main issue here, it is the tweeting.

      Even if twitter is not covered specifically in the invigilators’ guidelines or whatever, you’d have thought they’d be sensible enough to not do this kind of thing.

  • If every mistake made by humanity was attributed to natural fallibility or ‘human error’ then it seems other erroneous actions would be justifiable, despite rules and regulations.

    Please do not question the integrity of student journalists. On a limited budget and timescale we produce a weekly paper good enough to rival what many other universities produce fortnightly and often face harsh and unnecessary criticism.

    I can assure you we only report on matters we think will be of the utmost concern to studens here at Cardiff – we are not in the business of spinning a story out of nothing.

    If a possible breech of exam conditions does not seem to be of interest to students in your eyes then maybe we have to question what academic staff believe students are at University to do.

    I think you’ll find the majority of the student body, of which Sam Reid has so excellently represented, take exams very seriously.

    In reply to your question, I don’t have enough time to regularly ‘read’ Twitter, sorry.

  • The lecturer is a human being, making a non-offensive and very light comment in their capacity as a human being. Nobody was harmed. I can guarantee, that when exam time comes around again, students are not going to be distracted/self-conscious in fear that someone might notice that they look cold, for eg.

    And if anybody is, then i because it was so un-necessarily spun by Gair Rhydd in mock-outrage, and used as your cover story.

    The last tweet quoted appears to be a self-depreciating joke. Have you ever read twitter?

    BB

  • I feel the comments above miss the point of the article.
    The purpose of the article is to raise issues of exam protocol here in Cardiff. When students sit an exam they are not there to be judged or commented upon but there to prove themselves academically. Exams are the result of weeks of hard work and for a lecturer to diminish this effort with irresponsible comments is disrespectful and undermining to students.
    Lecturers, by virtue of their position do not have carte blanche to behave in ways they deem appropriate, instead their responsibility lies in the education of the students who pay to attend this University, not in making cheap remarks pertaining to exams or any other University related subject matter.
    Whether inside or outside of the exam hall it is irresponsible of someone charged with the task of educating university students to comment upon exam situations.
    The final comment included in the article rather furthers my point – was the lecturer in question deliberately trying to undermine Cardiff University?

  • ‘Member of staff makes passing comment that students drink coffee’.

    Biggest non-story of all time. Sam Reid’s reaction makes me embarrassed to be a member of Cardiff University.

    Either there were some more offensive comments censored from this news story, or Mary Whitehouse quoted near the end really needs to get some perspective.

    BB

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