Thursday, April 12, 2012


date: Fri, 08 Jun 2007 15:02:02 +0100
from: Phil Jones <>
subject: Re: FW: Complaint attached
to: "Vincent Chris Prof \(ENV\)" <>, "White Carrie Mrs \(ACAD\)" <>, "Briffa Keith Prof \(ENV\)" <>, "Hiscock Kevin Dr \(ENV\)" <>


Dear All,
Here's my thoughts on the complaint.

1. We need to get our stories straight for when Chris meet the
students on the 18th. Is a meeting worthwhile next week?

2. The whole issue highlights the needs for someone to be in
charge of the course in the future, so I hope the bid to ET is
successful this time
and someone will be in place from September. We all have
lots of other things we're doing and commitments to many
projects etc.

Also the new person ought to sit in on most of the lectures within
535 and 594
to know what was said in parts they won't be giving.

3. In hindsight, this whole issue should and could have been handled
better. We now need to sort things out and try and nip the complaint
in the bud. I had hoped this had happened when Keith met a few of the
students on April 20. Clearly this wasn't enough. Maybe we all thought
that it was, but some of the other issues have kept things simmering
in the student's minds. We don't want these complaints to appear on a
web site, even though it won't affect the coming year's intake, as many
have already accepted.

4. We all knew Dave was leaving by early February, so we should have
all been fully aware of might happen. Dave may have said some things to
the students and stirred them up a little, but we probably assumed his
heart was in this up to when he left and it clearly wasn't.

5. The ET should take some responsibility for the problems, when they
denied us a replacement for Dave earlier this year.

6. As many of the students are paying real money for the course, we
need to ensure this is handled well from now on, and that it doesn't
happen again in subsequent years.

Now some specific thoughts on some aspects:

Half Day on IPCC/Tyndall

This is a good idea, but refers mainly to WG2/3 of IPCC and
Tyndall. Something like the session we organized in CRU on
Feb 20, which was attended by many within ENV. Through this
the MSc group did get the latest information from WG1.

This would need to be arranged by Mike Hulme and/or Neil Adger
(and others), as this material is partly beyond the expertise we have in CRU.
The subject is a lot more than Climate Change Science now.

Lecture Programme

Anita Wreford delivered two 1-hr lectures (one on Stern), so I've been told.

M535 did include material from AR4 (WG1) for some areas. We did
give the afternoon talks on Feb 20 as well. We weren't allowed to use
any diagrams from WG1 until after the SPM was out on Feb 2. So,
it was impossible for Dave to have used material from the SPMs of
WG2 and WG3 as their press conferences weren't until Good Friday
and early May.

Cancellations of Lectures

This is news to me. I was away a lot Feb to May though.

Students getting marks back

I put mine in a place outside my office when I get them. When
I'm away this doesn't happen as quickly, so is the present system
of sending these back through the advisors the best way of returning

At present these get put into the pigeonholes in the KC room. Sylvia
(our secretary) checks these every morning. Markers often tell students
they have been put in pigeonholes, and they expect them immediately.
I've occasionally had to go to the KC room to get them, so they
can find out marks. I can't do this when away.

Coursework Marking

I didn't set any, so am unaware of these issues. I would have thought
that marking should be standard and should include both a clear
demonstration of absorption of the taught material and some
assessment of the literature. Sometimes the coursework should be
on material that isn't taught.

Web Site

I didn't realise that we had a page with the student details.


This seem to be the main gripe, and we clearly have to do better
here. Getting
everyone together though is difficult as we all know.

Lectures after Easter

I was aware that these were to take place. I tried to find out who
was giving
these, but was unsuccessful. I was not aware Anita Wreford was asked, or
when she was due to give them or what the content was. When I left this with
you Chris, I thought you would arrange this. We talked about John Turnpenny?
I contacted John and found out he'd said no, but had no idea about Anita.

Field Trip

I only heard afterwards (as I was away) that only Dave went on this.


535 did give the students up-to-date climate science. 594 does clearly
need to cover more on WG2/3 science. It will with Mike running it
next year. The complaint only refers to 594.


Although stated at the beginning, only a very small subset of these
matters have been addressed to me. I wasn't sent the complaint by
Joanna Vincent, for example. I have never talked with Vicky Ingram.
I did get the
email on Feb 22. The meeting was held when I was away.


At 16:50 07/06/2007, Vincent Chris Prof \(ENV\) wrote:
>Hi everyone
>Could you have a look at the attached? I believe I'm being thrown to the
>wolves on Monday 18 June so I appreciated your help in this matter.
>Some of the points the MSc students raise here are new to me, are they
>new to you? Is what they say correct? - I don't want to nit-pick but I
>need to know where the inaccuracies are, and where the exaggerations are
>(e.g. they talk about one lecture from Anna Wretford whereas I thought
>she gave two?)
>- I'd be most grateful if you could print out the attached and scrawl
>your comments on it!
>The MSc students have had a raw deal on M594 so I wonder if we could
>organise a couple of days of seminars (timing might be a problem) to
>cover some of the aspects of the Unit that were missed? I'd rather try
>to ensure they got up-to-date relevant material, and therefore a
>complete course, than went away without that information? I'd like to
>have a 'solution' to the problem to present to them!
>Many Thanks
>Professor Chris Vincent
>Head of School
>School of Environmental Sciences
>University of East Anglia
>Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK
>Phone (+44) (0) 1603 592 836
>Fax (+44) (0) 1603 593 792
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Vincent Jo Mrs (ACAD)
>Sent: 06 June 2007 15:06
>To: White Carrie Mrs (ACAD); Vincent Chris Prof (ENV)
>Cc: Bezants Karen Mrs (SCI); Willis Sarah-Jane Mrs (SCI)
>Subject: FW: Complaint attached
>Dear Both
>Attached is a copy of the complaint from the MSc students on ENV-M594
>Climate Change.
>Peter Belton is dealing with it at faculty level as the HoS ENV is named
>in the complaint.
>A meeting with Peter and the students is being arranged - date tbc
>Karen Bezants is collating various items of information about the unit
>and course and might need to ask Carrie for help in finding things.
>I would expect that Peter will also want to meet with relevant ENV
>faculty too.
>Joanna Vincent
>Faculty Manager
>Science Faculty Teaching Office
>University of East Anglia
>NR4 7TJ
>Tel 01603 592254

Prof. Phil Jones
Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0) 1603 592090
School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) 1603 507784
University of East Anglia
Norwich Email


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