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Jamie faces another resit

BBC Scotland reported today, broadcast, online and presumably on radio (SMS):

Racial harassment is a “common experience” for staff and students at Scottish universities, according to a new report.

As always, the report by young McIvor is confused and misleading. It’s only when we read and hear (perhaps):

Researchers heard from 571 staff and 845 students across the three nations.

that, once more we know this is a tiny self-selecting sample that probably tells us little of value.

There are around 430 000 staff at UK universities and 2 340 000 students so the response rates, even if it were a random sample, are 0.13% and 0.036%.


This report is less than useless.

Only after 28 paragraphs, do we hear that 11% of Scottish students have been ‘attacked’ as opposed to the overall rate of 24%. Why don’t we hear the actual number? Did, pro rata, less than 90 Scottish students respond? Did less than 10 report being attacked?

As for anti-English behaviour:

The report says there are also examples of anti-English sentiment expressed at Scottish universities. However, the report contains few specific details of this and suggests that particular problem is more commonplace in Wales.

So, really, statistically, there’s nothing here?

Nevertheless, this BBC report will have done some damage to the reputation of Scottish universities and, perhaps, worried some applicants and their families so here’s some balance:

Scotland’s university cities the safest in the UK by a very long way

July 22, 2019

From the Complete University Guide 2019, we can see that the overall fall in crime in Scotland in the last ten, or so, years is reflected in the relative safety of university campuses. Of particular interest is the level of…

Almost all ethnic groups in Scotland experience significant fall in crime

June 8, 2019

From a parliamentary question, yesterday: Annie Wells (Glasgow) (Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party): To ask the Scottish Government how many people from ethnic minorities have been victims of crime in each of the last five years, also broken down by…

More than 90% of members of all of Scotland’s ethnicities satisfied with Police Scotland performance

June 8, 2019

  In response to this parliamentary question: ‘Annie Wells (Glasgow) (Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party): To ask the Scottish Government what information it holds on people from ethnic minorities’ (a) confidence in the police and (b) fear of crime, broken…

Only Guardian and Al Jazeera tell us EU families and ‘Eurochildren’ in Brexiting Britain feel safer in Scotland

From a research study by the University of Birmingham we read evidence that the gut feeling many of us had about the treatment of migrants in Scotland being different from that elsewhere in the UK has some substance: Summary: · Despite sharing the uncertainty over the outcome of the Brexit process, EU families in Scotland […]