University drops word ‘trigger’ as it upsets students

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Warwick University has decided the term is too “provocative”, according to reports. It is now using the phrase “content notes” to warn students about material that contains sensitive issues.

In a reply to a Freedom of Information request, the university said: “‘Trigger warnings’ are now referred to as ‘content notes’ due to the word ‘trigger’ being itself a provocative word.”

It said its English and Comparative Literary Studies department had strategies in place to help students deal with “difficult and complex questions”.

A spokesman said: “The way these strategies are flagged has changed.”

Warwick, like many universities, uses warnings to alert students to issues such as racism, homophobia and violence, so they can be prepared for what lies ahead.

Supporters insist they are in place to help students engage with issues and to assist those who have experienced a past trauma.

But critics have said they are “mollycoddling” young people.

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Tory MP Andrew Bridgen described Warwick’s move as “ludicrous”, saying it is “harming the next generation”.

He added: “Who is actually calling for these trigger or content warnings? Is it resilient young people or wokeafflicted academics?

Bestselling author Lord Archer said: “We don’t want to end up with a situation when we can only read Hans Christian Andersen.”

Warwick, founded in 1965 and one of the UK’s elite Russell Group universities, was contacted for a response.

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