01 December 2015 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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Upward mobility not assured by rising HE participation
Higher education participation rates have risen across the world’s richest countries with some 57% of young adults within the countries of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development expected to enter a bachelor degree or equivalent during their lifetime, according to Education at a Glance 2015.
Sixth year at bottom of education spending league
In a blow to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s aim to boost Japan’s status around the world, the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development revealed last week that Japan ranks at the bottom among 31 member states in the amount of the country’s wealth spent on education, including higher education.
Mobility has shot up but pace could slow, says OECD
Student mobility has increased dramatically over recent years along with the exploding demand for education. But “the economic climate, shrinking support for scholarships and grants, as well as tighter budgets for individuals” could yet slow the pace of that flow, the OECD says.
Government pledges 30% rise in universities budget
Hopes for a better education system are rising as Sri Lanka’s new government has promised to quadruple spending on education in its budget for 2016, with a near 30% increase in spending on universities compared to 2015.
International education income hits record high
Exports from Australia’s international education services sector – two-thirds of it comprising income from international higher education students – reached a record high of A$18.8 billion (US$13.5 billion) in 2014-15, the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics data have shown.
Massive demand for leadership scholarships for Syrians
The 271 Syrian students awarded 'Leadership for Syria' scholarships in German universities were welcomed in Berlin last week – but such is the demand that they represent only one in 18 of the 5,000 Syrians who applied to the programme organised by the German Academic Exchange Service, DAAD.
More money for higher education and research
The German government intends to spend more on education and research next year. Higher education is to benefit from this above all with more places at universities, improvements in teaching quality and extra support for research.
Higher loan repayments to hit English graduates
Students who have already graduated from English universities face higher loan repayments after Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne announced that the earnings threshold is to be frozen at £21,000 (US$31,700) a year until 2021.
Former university heads push for education reform
Following the dramatic election victory for the National League for Democracy, headed by Aung San Suu Kyi, with two former university rectors elected to parliament, the prospects of education reform are high, but it is still unclear where the priorities will lie.
Indians fuel record growth in foreign student numbers
Enrolments of international students in United States colleges and universities climbed 10% last year to 974,936, the largest one-year rate of growth in 35 years, a report says. While China sent the largest number of students, the real story is about rising numbers of students coming from India.
Students' hunger strike raises fears for transition
Aung San Suu Kyi – whose National League for Democracy party won a resounding victory in this month's democratic elections in Myanmar – is trying to intercede in a hunger strike by student leaders demanding that all jailed political prisoners be set free, amid fears that unrest over the hunger strike could disrupt the post-election transition to a new government.
Government offers extra support for refugee students
The German government is to provide extra support for refugees seeking to study in the country. The new package of measures, which includes preparing students for study and supporting their integration in institutions, has been developed with the German Academic Exchange Service, DAAD.
New action plan recommends boosting HE cooperation
The European Union and the African Union have adopted a plan to improve higher education cooperation, mobility and mutual recognition of qualifications in an effort to encourage legal migration free of the ‘suffering, abuse and exploitation’ experienced during the current sharp influx of refugees and migrants.
Ongoing drama in universities and one ‘demotes’ Afrikaans
In a week of ongoing drama in South African higher education, a group of 226 academics from the University of Stellenbosch has backed a management proposal to adopt English as the primary language, with Afrikaans and isiXhosa as ‘additional’ languages. This followed demonstrations at Stellenbosch and violent protests at some other universities, with multiple arrests.
University at heart of Ebola battle badly hit by deaths
As life returns to normal in Sierra Leone following the World Health Organization’s decision to declare the country free of Ebola, it is emerging that one of its universities – which produces the bulk of the country’s health workers – has been badly hit by the loss of key staff.
Government plans incentives to lure foreign scientists
The Russian government plans to create conditions for attracting foreign scientists to national universities, with the long-term aim of ensuring the share of foreign scientists among teaching staff of each leading Russian university should not be less than 10%.
New BRICS deal on education, research collaboration
The BRICS countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – last Wednesday signed a far-reaching agreement on cooperation in education that includes joint research and more collaboration in postgraduate training and co-publishing.
Foreign student numbers jump despite tuition fees
The number of fee-paying students from outside the European Union or European Economic Area at higher education institutions in Sweden rose by 30% in 2014-15 compared to the previous year, the first rise since tuition fees were introduced in 2011.
Non-mobile post-docs take greater share of tenure
A greater share of post-doctoral applicants who have not studied or worked abroad gain tenure than those who have been internationally mobile before and during their post-doctoral career, according to a new report.
Commission seeks stronger role for university leaders
The proportion of university budgets comprising basic funding should be increased and collegial influence on decision-making and recruitment should be reduced, to give university leaders greater freedom to prioritise spending and hire staff to meet strategic needs, a commission on higher education leadership has recommended.
Curbs on candidacy in long-delayed student elections
Egypt’s first student elections since 2012 are to be held – but with restrictions imposed on candidacy that are being seen as aimed at excluding ‘dissident’ students. The polls are due to start on Monday 16 November and to run through December on campuses countrywide.
Thousands of students fall victim to accreditation spat
Some six weeks after being sent home by universities, more than 4,000 students remain excluded from their studies amid a bitter war over course accreditation between the Engineers Board of Kenya and the Commission for University Education. Nothing has yet come of an attempt to alter the law to strip professional bodies of accreditation powers.
University autonomy vs public accountability in HE act?
The famously imprecise line between institutional autonomy and public accountability is under the spotlight in South Africa as Higher Education and Training Minister Dr Blade Nzimande prepares to amend the Higher Education Act in a process that will become public in the new year.
Universities launch drive to oppose rising xenophobia
The member universities of the German Rectors’ Conference have launched a national initiative to oppose xenophobia in Germany, against a backdrop of the refugee crisis and a steeply rising number of incidents of verbal and physical racial attacks in recent months.
Staff promotion not tied to internationalisation
Only 8% of United States higher education institutions have guidelines specifying international work or experience as a consideration for faculty promotion and tenure decisions, according to a study by the American Council on Education.