A Case Against the Policy Mandating Vertically-Aligned Degrees in Philippine Graduate Education


This paper delves into a policy that mandates vertically-aligned degrees. For context, many universities have adopted and are increasingly considering adopting this rule, which surprisingly has not faced much public criticism. This paper argues against the policy of mandating vertically-aligned degrees because it is, in the term of Frankfurt, bullshit and lacks merit due to administrators’ misconceptions about vertical alignment. It asserts that the policy mandating vertically-aligned degrees restricts academic freedom and presents students with a false dilemma, limiting opportunities for generalism and multipotentiality. Upon examination, the policy leads to the dehumanization and alienation of students, reshaping universities into undemocratic, tyrannical entities while stifling creativity and cross-disciplinary collaboration. This paper advocates for a more adaptable and inclusive graduate education framework. It underscores the necessity of prioritizing students’ individual needs and aspirations, urging for an environment where students have the agency to mold their educational journey. This paper strongly urges a shift away from inflexible educational mandates and highlights the significance of fostering an environment that champions autonomy, welcomes diverse academic pursuits, and enables the full exploration of students’ potential. Finally, it seeks to cultivate an educational landscape that fosters innovation and societal progress while honoring individual autonomy and development.

Author Biography

Louie Giray, Colegio de Muntinlupa, Philippines

Louie Giray is an Assistant Professor IV at Colegio de Muntinlupa, Philippines, where he teaches communication courses. He is the Head of the Communication and the Arts Cluster in the General Education Department. Concurrently, he is the Radio Broadcasting Manager at Radyo Colegio, the campus FM radio station. As a licensed professional teacher, his mission is to help students become more articulate and creative, with the goal of supporting them in their personal and professional pursuits. He holds a Master degree in Communication and Bachelor in Secondary Education, major in English, cum laude, both from Polytechnic University of the Philippines. Moreover, he completed a course on University Governance and Academic Leadership at Vrije Universiteit, Belgium, and a certificate in Writing in the Disciplines at Excelsior College, USA. A member of National Research Council of the Philippines, he boasts a record of numerous publications and presentations in international outlets. His research interests are broad, ranging from reflective practice to artificial intelligence in higher education.

How to Cite
Giray, L. (2023). A Case Against the Policy Mandating Vertically-Aligned Degrees in Philippine Graduate Education. Changing Societies & Personalities, 7(4), 11–30. doi:10.15826/csp.2023.7.4.249
Opening the Debate