Confidentiality forbids a lot of detail here, but this week saw me finish off a research project for a group of FE colleges. The aim was to explore potential attitudes to new brand titles and graphic identities. This is happening all over state education right now - the need to differentiate and attract students in order to maintain or increase funding makes marketing a lot more important than previously.
From my education sector experience, I already knew a lot of people don’t go into education in order to sell themselves and their expertise to young people. They have other, less commercial, often more philanthropic motives. So it was interesting to see how accepting a lot of senior teachers were that they are now in the business of - well, being a business.
As long as 'competing to attract attention and get students through the door' doesn’t detract from classroom delivery, Adam Smith would probably say it's a good thing. Not everyone is going to agree with old Adam however and education remains an unusual sector. Example: I found the results of a top five University internal staff survey, online, recently (as you do). The biggest thing academics suggested they wanted was “to spend less time teaching”. This coincides with students being asked to pay far more money attending University.
There were some other juicy bits too – email me and I’ll tell you which University it was!