While Times Higher Education’s Latin America rankings are welcome, there is room for improvement to reflect regional issues and activities and indicators that are pertinent to development – and there are some interesting omissions.
Cristina González and Liliana Pedraja
As Hillary Clinton outlines plans for free tuition for some students in the United States, Chile has unveiled its Higher Education Draft Bill. The bill has its critics, but marks an important step towards rolling back the neo-liberal movement towards greater privatisation of higher education.
Robert Coelen and Jiang Bo
The scale of China’s internationalisation plans for its higher education system is becoming clear. But will the country be able to achieve its goals, and how prepared is it for involvement in the global community of education?
Tom P Abeles
Student unrest in the United States and South Africa are symptoms of deeper problems with the education system than access to knowledge. Until students and academics see that their concerns are aligned, we will continue to avoid hard questions and treat symptoms and not causes.
Jenny J Lee
The metaphor of sliding doors indicates the hit-or-miss enactment of immigration policies by South Africa, in that the obstructions and eventual results seem unforeseeable. The almost haphazard nature of securing study visas might be why several international students interviewed for research described themselves as ‘lucky’.
It is important, if Vietnamese students need an educational consulting company to navigate international study, that they choose one carefully and ensure it is ethical.
World-class universities are a high cost option and Indonesia lacks resources. Instead it should invest in locally relevant institutions that deliver a number of benefits.
Saudi laws need updating so that people can experience the full benefits of massive open online courses, or MOOCs.
Mary Beth Marklein
Some critics are demanding that former United States senator Bob Kerrey resign as chair of the board of Fulbright University Vietnam, which will open this year. Kerrey has apologised more than once for his involvement in civilian deaths during the Vietnam war and has offered to step down as chair, but also argues for perspective – “We've got to put this war behind us”.
The prestigious Indian Institute of Technology Bombay has become the latest in a raft of Indian universities to abandon Western mediaeval-style black graduation robes and mortar boards for their graduation ceremonies, switching to traditional Indian garments.
In a tumultuous time of deepening divisions and inequalities, in higher education and in societies globally, it is imperative for universities to advance ‘responsible internationalisation’ and collaboration aimed at creating a better world rather than just promoting self-interest, says Leonard Engel, executive director of the European Association for International Education.
Canadian universities have scaled up programmes and services specifically designed for indigenous students, raising academic programming to accommodate this group by 33% between 2013 and 2015. These efforts are “an important pathway to reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous people”, says Universities Canada President Paul Davidson.
Video use in higher education has increased dramatically over the years, says leading video technology provider Kaltura, which has published its third annual State of Video in Education report. An international survey with 1,500 respondents showed video usage reaching a tipping point during the 2015-16 academic year.
Hurriyet Daily News
Times Higher Education
The New York Times
The Korea Herald
Daily News and Analysis
New Zealand’s government has launched a NZ$70 million (US$49 million) plan aimed at attracting world-leading researchers and their teams – particularly people with an established record in innovation and entrepreneurship in the top ‘maker’ disciplines – to the nation’s universities over the next four years.
The Council of Higher Education has ordered a crackdown on academics in the wake of the failed attempted military coup, suspending four university rectors, demanding the resignation of all deans and imposing a blanket travel ban on academics.
The Malaysian government has told universities in the country – including private universities and foreign branch campuses – to step up monitoring of students to prevent Islamic radicalisation after recent attacks in Malaysia and Bangladesh.
For a long time, Bangladesh’s religious education system was thought to be a recruiting ground for militant Islamic groups. However, three of the militants actively involved in a horrific attack at an upmarket café in Dhaka this month were students at elite private universities, prompting a major government rethink of its strategy to counter militancy in higher education institutions.
One element of the maelstrom of United Kingdom politics after the historic vote to leave the European Union was crystallised last week as Theresa May replaced David Cameron as the prime minister charged with leading the Brexit negotiations.
An aid to international students who want to find the most culturally diverse student campuses across some of the main destination nations was launched last week by Hotcourses, the global course search website.
Double degrees, joint research and courses, and promoting massive open online courses are among the priorities of a partnership signed last week by Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie – the huge international French language higher education and research association – and the leaders of France’s universities, écoles and engineering schools.
Ministers of education have agreed on a draft declaration for implementation of a harmonised higher education system for the East African Community. From next year students will be able to transfer credits to higher education institutions in five partner states.
Katherine Mangan, The Chronicle of Higher Education
When shots rang out inside El Centro College’s downtown Dallas campus shortly after 9 pm on Thursday 7 July, the 58 students and employees working there late had no way of knowing just how close the gunman was. It wasn’t until 9:36 pm that students said they received the first alert from the college warning them to take cover.
An initial sum of €240 million (US$265 million) will be made available to a newly created national institute that will fund research and innovation in Greece, and will support government efforts to pull the country out of prolonged recession and create new jobs.
The Association of Vice-Chancellors of Nigerian Universities has proposed reforms to deal with the increasing number of individuals being promoted to professorships without apparently following due process.
Jan Petter Myklebust
A consulting firm has secured a mandate from the government of Denmark to interview 35 stakeholders as part of a broader investigation into universities’ compliance with government policy frameworks. A researchers’ magazine sees the move as an attempt to exert more control over higher education.
The United Kingdom’s growing for-profit higher education sector – set to expand as the government encourages so-called 'challenger' institutions to compete with established state universities – has a new voice.
German universities should do more advertising on social media to get refugee students to enrol, says the Wissenschaftsrat – German Council of Science and Humanities, the country’s chief science policy advisory body.
Egypt’s main state-run Cairo University has suspended – for alleged corruption – six professors linked to the now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, as a crackdown on Islamist academics persists.
The government of China is investing a massive US$20 million in the University of Nairobi’s Confucius Institute, one of the big education projects by the Chinese in Africa.