29 November 2015 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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Africa News
NIGERIA: Funding boost for tertiary institutions
Nigeria's government has started disbursing funds to selected public tertiary institutions to help them fast-track the development of teaching, research and infrastructure including student hostels. The extra-budgetary funding for six universities, three polytechnics and three colleges of education has been described as a step in the right direction.
AFRICA-CANADA: Boost for Next-Einstein centres
The Canadian government has awarded C$20 million (US$19.4 million) over the next four years to five centres of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences. The centres are spread across the continent and run through the AIMS-Next Einstein Initiative. They will train talented young African postgraduate researchers in mathematical sciences.
EGYPT: Students angry over admission curbs
Hossam Safwat has just passed secondary school certificate examinations with flying colours, scoring 92%. But he is not sure if he will be allowed to attend his dream college - a medical school - after Egypt's minister of higher education announced that minimum admission grades for the new academic year would be based on the average of those of the past five years.
WEST AFRICA: Regional centre for renewable energy
A regional centre to help develop renewable energy and promote workforce development in the 15 countries of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS , has opened in Praia, the capital of Cape Verde.
GREAT LAKES: Partnership signed with AUF
The French-speaking University Agency, AUF, and the Economic Community of the Great Lakes Countries have signed a partnership agreement to support higher education and research in the community's three member countries - Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda.
DR CONGO: Minister meets donors for reform funds
The Democratic Republic of Congo's Minister of Higher Education and Universities Professor Léonard Mashako Mamba has met funding agencies and other partners to present policies and reforms for which the government is seeking support, reported La Prospérité of Kinshasa.
SENEGAL: Students on the rampage - again
In the latest of a number of violent demonstrations students at the Université Cheikh Anta Diop of Dakar went on the rampage this month, setting fire and causing other damage to university offices, and attacking the rector and a faculty dean with poison gas, said newspaper reports.
TUNISIA: Focus on employability in university guide
The focus is on rationalising higher education courses and on qualifications to respond to the needs of the labour market in the 2010 guide to university courses published by Tunisia's Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, reported the Agence Tunis Afrique Presse of Tunis.
SOUTH AFRICA: Career guidance for higher education
A career guidance campaign named after Nelson Mandela - and launched today on his 92nd birthday - aims to mobilise South Africans in the higher education and training sectors and in the professions to assist school pupils with information on universities and colleges. The idea is for better guidance to help students make appropriate study choices, optimise their job opportunities and reduce high drop-out rates.
AFRICA: Continental leadership centre launched
Africa's drive towards improving its governance has received a shot in the arm with the launch of a continental leadership training centre in Kenya's capital Nairobi. The African Leadership Centre will teach and mentor the next generation of leaders.
EGYPT: Japan's first Africa-Middle East university
Almost seven years after the idea was floated at an Arab-Japanese forum in Tokyo, Japan and Egypt last month celebrated the launch of the first Japanese university in Africa and the Middle East. The Egypt-Japan University for Science and Technology, E-JUST, is an Egyptian public university, in partnership with Japan, based near the coastal city of Alexandria.
AFRICA: New institute to boost university governance
A new institute to strengthen the governance and management of African universities has been officially inaugurated in Yaoundé, Cameroon. The Pan-African Institute of University Governance aims to improve and modernise practices for the competent running of higher education institutions throughout Sub-Saharan Africa.
AFRICA: Pan-African University close to starting
Kenya has been selected as the East African host of the planned Pan-African University, a specialised institution comprising a network of universities that is being created to help supply the continent's high-level human capital. This ends a five-month stalemate between countries in the region that had been squabbling over who the host would be.
NIGERIA: Accused Nigerian students deported
The Malaysian government has deported two Nigerian postgraduate students who were among 10 people from various countries detained in January for alleged links with the terrorist organisation Al-Qaeda. The Nigerians had been studying at the International Islamic University near the capital Kuala Lumpur.
EGYPT: University cooperation to ease Nile Basin row
Egypt plans to promote higher education cooperation with seven upstream Nile Basin states in a diplomatic move to strengthen strategic, economic and cultural relations. The aim is to ease tension sparked by a new pact calling for equitable water use, which Egypt perceives as being against its interests.
AFRICA: International research initiatives launched
A number of international initiatives have been launched in Africa recently to develop research and innovation across the continent, and to transform new ideas generated by higher education and research into improved products, processes and businesses. The projects include a technology development and transfer network, a continental research framework programme and a science-to-business challenge.
AFRICA: New inventions and discoveries observatory
An Online Observatory for African Inventions and Discoveries has been launched, aimed at encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship to help meet the continent's development challenges.
KENYA: Cashing in on foreign language learning
Kenya's universities are rolling out foreign language programmes as nations and investors, especially from Asia, increasingly turn to the East African country for resources to boost their industrial growth. In the past month Kenya's biggest universities - Nairobi and Kenyatta - have announced new courses in Korean and Chinese respectively. They both host branches of China's Confucius Institute.
AFRICA: Does Africa really need new idealism?
Perhaps it is a fear that aid from the financially tumultuous North might be squeezed. Perhaps it is a growing frustration at rich countries' failure to keep their promises to the world's poor. Whatever the cause, a wave of idealism is sweeping through the innovation policy debate, accompanied by that idealist writ - the manifesto.
ZIMBABWE: Protesting students torch lecture theatre
Students at Zimbabwe's National University of Science Technology went on the rampage recently and set a lecture theatre on fire, destroying property worth more than US$10,000 in protest against stringent conditions for accessing government loans. Nationwide around 41,000 students, unable to pay fees, have applied for loans so far this year.
MALAWI: Students injured in clashes with police
Police used excessive force against scores of students, beating and injuring some of them, while quelling a protest and lecture boycott against lack of equipment at the state-run Mzuzu University in northern Malawi. The students were mainly angry about the unavailability of a photocopier and printing machines.
AFRICA: Fifth eLearning Africa conference
"The internet flattens hierarchy, reduces social distance, makes me closer to you and, paradoxically, makes all our serious connections more authentic. I witness how this helps young people in the process of learning values and how it assists in the planning of positive community actions." This year's eLearning Africa conference started with a stirring speech by the Right Reverend Dr S Tilewa Johnson, Bishop of Gambia.
KENYA: Funding boost for public universities
Kenya will spend an extra US$293 million on its seven public universities during the next financial year beginning in July, potentially easing a biting admission crisis plaguing the institutions and improving a dwindling quality of learning. Subsidies to universities will nearly double, from $360 million to $640 million.
UNESCO: Decision on controversial prize deferred
The Unesco executive board has postponed a decision on whether to award or abandon a controversial science prize named after and funded by the dictatorial President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo of Equatorial Guinea.
NIGERIA: Power tussle over entrance examinations
Nigeria's Committee of Vice-chancellors and the Joint Matriculation Examination Board, JAMB - an examination board for all tertiary institutions - are at each other's throats once again over the holding of separate university entrance exams. The national assembly wants one of the two entrance exam systems cancelled and neither group wants it to be theirs.