At Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) Council this evening, a motion was passed to advocate for the “reorganisation of timetable publication dates”.
The motion was proposed by senior sophister music class representative Daniel Vives-Lynch and seconded by David Boylan, junior sophister music class representative.
Presenting the motion this evening, Lynch compared Trinity with University College Dublin (UCD) who “provide timetables well in advance” of the academic year.
Speaking in support of the motion, TCDSU President Leah Keogh said that it was “definitely doable”. She said that the Covid-19 pandemic shone a light on College’s “bureaucratic ineptitude”.
The motion stated that this year and previously, “academic timetables have been published at best only one week in advance”, and mandates the executive officers to “personally advocate” for earlier timetable publication “in line with or in imitation of the systems of rival Irish universities”.
The motion noted that the late publication of timetables has “negatively impacted both students and teaching staff of all departments; restricting the individual’s ability to organise their scheduling of activities external to Trinity College Dublin”.
Speaking to Trinity News, Vives-Lynch said: “Over the past two years, I have heard more and more complaints from students describing how the extremely late publication of timetables has negatively affected their ability to organise working hours in labour practices outside of their academic study; labour that in many cases crucially helps students to fund their degrees.”
“I have been made aware that this practice equally affects part-time lecturers and teaching staff across departments, thereby framing this issue as universally problematic for students and teachers alike”, he added.
Vives-Lynch asked: “Why are our timetables being published so late, sometimes even after their respective academic years have begun?” and noted that “it seems illogical that TCD, ranking among the top universities in Ireland, is unable to perform a task that almost all other universities fulfil with ease”.
He also noted that “UCD publishes their student timetables well in advance of the academic year”, arguing: “If TCD is so insistent that it is indeed the best university in Ireland then perhaps it should focus more on student and teaching staff wellbeing connected to this issue.”
Vives-Lynch believes that “this possible disregard for students and teaching staff similarly highlights the fear of many students that Trinity is becoming less and less interested in the well-being of students and staff, and perhaps more interested in corporate or business interests instead”.
Additional reporting by Jack Kennedy, Kate Henshaw, Bella Salerno and Jamie Cox.