19 August 2017 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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Commentary
UNITED STATES
Recognising refugee qualifications
If the United States expects to accommodate larger numbers of refugees and migrants at its higher education institutions, it needs to be able to understand and handle their unique admissions needs.
GLOBAL
The tides of change revealed by new world ranking
Traditional research universities are under threat from newer institutions in areas such as technology, according to the QS rankings, and developing countries are biting at the heels of the developed.
Photo: MIT– fifth year running at number one
GLOBAL
Open access and piracy threaten science
There are two major problems with open access that threaten the core of the science enterprise: the dismantling of professional societies and the loss of a permanent science record.
GLOBAL
Brexit and the European shape of things to come in HE
Brexit and how British universities articulate the case for European collaboration and internationalisation is not just an issue for the United Kingdom. The loss of the UK from the European Higher Education Area will affect everyone.
EUROPE
Internationalisation as a first response for refugees
Creating a more inclusive approach to internationalisation enables institutions to act more nimbly and creatively to the ‘new mobility’ caused by the refugee crisis and is needed more broadly to balance exclusionary practices.
UKRAINE
Where corruption among university leaders is rife
The latest corruption case at a Ukrainian university is just part of a pattern that starts at the very top. If there were a ranking that rated world higher education institutions based on how corrupt they are, some of Ukraine's universities would be among the top spots.
GLOBAL
Speaking heresy – 21st century teaching
The university is changing fast and this means we need to question what skills students need and what competencies faculty require to teach them.

UNITED STATES
Does charging for tuition reduce access?
‘Progressive tuition models’ in the United States are redistributing funding from richer to poorer students and appear not to put lower-income students off applying to university, a study which explores these issues at a number of US campuses shows.
GLOBAL
Winners and losers in the ARWU ranking
Are developing countries learning to play the rankings game better as statistics show countries like the United Kingdom and the United States are losing ground? The recently released Academic Ranking of World Universities, or ARWU, brought some surprises.
MAURITIUS
The revival of polytechnics
Across Africa there has been a move to upgrade polytechnics to universities, but in so doing countries are failing to train enough vocational workers, such as technicians. Could the change of policy in Mauritius where a replacement is being sought for polytechnics be the way forward?
GLOBAL
University rankings ignore teaching
Over the past decade, the major and unhelpful intrusion into both the national and the international worlds of higher education has been the advent of university rankings. The global university rankings put too much emphasis on research and are undermining universities’ key educational mission.
INDIA
What are the must-have reforms for higher education?
While discussion papers around a new higher education policy contain some positive proposals, there is a lack of an overarching vision to address fundamental problems within the system.
CHINA
Higher education widens the gap between rich and poor
A new governance system is needed to address concerns that massification of higher education is leading to a growing divide between rich and poor rather than the contrary.
MOROCCO
Countering extremism through human development
A non-profit organisation is working with young people in Morocco through a range of training and capacity-building programmes that aim both to give them practical skills and improve the lives of their communities.
GERMANY
Barriers to providing HE to refugees must be breached
Germany has been shocked by a series of terrorist attacks, but this should galvanise the country’s universities and policy-makers to address the barriers to the successful integration of many thousands of young refugees.
UNITED STATES
From micromasters to nanodegrees
Universities need to collaborate with employers who are the early adopters and opinion leaders in the world of new alternative credentials.
VENEZUELA
Can science overcome the Chávez legacy?
The underfunding of science, very low wages for teachers and brain drain are a result of years of politicisation of higher education, under which peer review for financing research projects became no longer important and the award of scholarships and the equipping of research laboratories were subject to politics.
LATIN AMERICA
New THE ranking – Brazil 23, Chile 11 and Argentina 0
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.
CHILE-UNITED STATES
Higher education reasserts its role as a public good
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.
CHINA
Breathtaking scale of higher education internationalisation
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?
GLOBAL
Treat the cause, not the symptom of student protests
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.
SOUTH AFRICA
Sliding doors – Securing study visas to South Africa
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’.
VIETNAM
Buyer beware – Advice for international students
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.
SAUDI ARABIA
Change the law to seize the benefits of MOOCs
Saudi laws need updating so that people can experience the full benefits of massive open online courses, or MOOCs.
EUROPE
UK universities in a post-Brexit world
Universities in the United Kingdom are in shock. So much collaboration between UK and other European universities has arisen from membership of the European Union. Now is the time to forge and deepen the UK’s European links through influential higher education associations.