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L’actualité challenges stereotypes about students in the arts, humanities and social sciences

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Friday, November 2, 2012

Milena Stanoeva Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

The November issue of L’actualité takes a look at Quebec’s job market, the future of employment in the province, and the benefits of a postsecondary education. Among the series of articles, the issue features a piece by Isabelle Grégoire on the social sciences, arts and humanities, and the employment prospects of graduates in those disciplines. Our president, Graham Carr, is quoted in the article, which seeks to challenge stereotypes that arose during the “printemps québécois” about students in the social sciences and humanities.

The Quebec student movement tended to be made up of, and headed by, social sciences and humanities students. Grégoire notes that commentators seized on this fact to call the students “spoiled children” who would be unable to find a job after university, and dub the movement the “revolution of the soft sciences.” Grégoire’s article contradicts these stereotypes with anecdotes and data, including findings from the 2011 Torben Drewes report.

While the main article is not online, L’actualité did publish a companion piece profiling five graduates from the humanities and social sciences, and their successful careers in sometimes unexpected fields. The issue also muses on a potential (and, it argues, much-needed) revolution in higher education, including the practice of reverse instruction and challenging what one university administrator calls the Harvard model of teaching.

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