HC Deb 30 March 1961 vol 637 cc1508-9
22. Mr. K. Robinson

asked the Secretary of State to the Treasury why Medical teaching has been specifically excluded from the terms of reference of the committee set up under the chairmanship of Sir Edward Hale to inquire into teaching methods in the universities; and whether he consulted the Minister of Health before reaching this decision.

Sir E. Boyle

The Committee to which the hon. Member refers was appointed by the University Grants Committee after discussion with the universities. The precise terms of reference of a Committee of this kind are not a matter on which either I or my right hon. Friend the Minister of Health would expect to be consulted. I understand that teaching in medicine—and in dentistry and veterinary science—which raises problems different from those of other undergraduate teaching, is excluded.

Mr. Robinson

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that there is a very strong case for an inquiry into medical teaching methods? Whilst it may not be his direct concern, will he, in conjunction with his right hon. Friend the Minister of Health, use his influence with the University Grants Committee to get the terms of reference changed in order to include medical teaching?

Sir E. Boyle

I will certainly take note of what the hon. Gentleman has said. As I expect he is aware, the present inquiry is essentially of a factual and analytic nature and is not aimed at making policy recommendations. I will certainly bear in mind the hon. Gentleman's points.