21 February 2017 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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World Round-up
NEW ZEALAND
Police investigate 'cheating' service for university students
Police and education authorities are investigating allegations of mass cheating by international students at tertiary institutes across the country, reports ONE NEWS.
JAPAN
Universities lure students with upscale residences
Universities in Japan are doing everything they can to attract students amid the problems of an aging society and decline in the number of young people. One approach being adopted to lure applicants is providing dormitories with state-of-the-art facilities, writes Masaaki Kameda for The Japan Times.
INDIA
Publisher threatens to sue blogger for $1 billion
Jeffrey Beall is a metadata librarian at the University of Colorado at Denver, but he's known online for his popular blog Scholarly Open Access, where he maintains a running list of open-access journals, and publishers he deems questionable or predatory. Now, one of those publishers intends to sue Beall, and says it is seeking $1 billion in damages, writes Jake New for The Chronicle of Higher Education.
UNITED KINGDOM
Higher fees have not meant more teaching – Report
The amount of lecture and tutorial time in universities has barely changed over the past six years despite a nine-fold hike in annual tuition fees, a major study has found. It was revealed that students are receiving just 20 minutes more teaching each week in the current academic year compared to 2005/06 when courses cost just £1,000 (US$1,500), writes Graeme Paton for The Telegraph.
AUSTRALIA
University funding cuts spark national outrage
The tertiary education union has vowed to launch a major campaign against university funding cuts in the lead-up to the federal election, as hundreds of students rallied last week in a national protest, reports AAP.
ZIMBABWE
State fails to sponsor university students
The government owes $62 million in unpaid fees to its state universities, polytechnic colleges and teacher’s colleges, Parliament heard last week. Director of Higher Education Martha Muguti disclosed that the Ministry of Finance had since 2012 failed to meet its budgetary obligations to finance tertiary institutions, leaving them in dire straits, reports NewsDay.
CHINA
Universities offer cash to students who find a job
In a tough job market, Shanghai's universities are offering a variety of incentives, such as subsidies for students willing to return to their home towns to work. This is meant to ensure a steady enrolment next year by bumping up the proportion of graduating students finding jobs, reports the Shanghai Daily.
KENYA
University admissions soar as admission levels drop
Admissions to public universities this year will hit an all-time high of 53,010 – a breezy 26% above last year’s – thanks to the rapid expansion of college places, writes Rawlings Otieno for Standard Digital. The increase in capacity has lowered the qualifying mark for this year’s freshmen to 61 from last year’s 63 points, the Joint Admissions Board announced during a media briefing.
UNITED KINGDOM
Oxford announces Thatcher scholarship trust
Oxford University has announced the creation of a Margaret Thatcher Scholarship Trust, which will give young people who succeed "against the odds" the opportunity to study at the institution, reports The Huffington Post UK.
UNITED KINGDOM
'Fly in, fly out' scholars fail to take off in China
A new report shows that 'fly in, fly out' academics are a source of frustration for Chinese students taking UK degrees in their own country, writes Jack Grove for Times Higher Education.
UNITED KINGDOM
English universities get £50m to drive growth
Universities in England are to receive a £50 million (US$76 million) cash injection intended to drive economic growth through "cutting-edge innovation and research projects". According to Universities Minister David Willetts, the funding, shared among 16 projects, aims to create 500 new firms and 3,000 jobs, writes Sean Coughlan for BBC News.
UNITED STATES
Columbia University still has 'whites only' scholarship
Columbia University still offers a “whites only” tuition fellowship, which is restricted to “a person of the Caucasian race” and may be in violation of the US Constitution, a Manhattan Supreme Court wrote in papers filed last Monday, reports RT.
UNITED STATES
Yale fined $165,000 for failing to report sexual crimes
The Department of Education has fined Yale University $165,000 for "very serious and numerous" Clery Act violations, stemming from sex offences that the Ivy League school failed to report, as well as not properly defining areas where crime statistics could be tabulated, writes Greg Otto for US News.
SOUTH AFRICA
University makes indigenous language study compulsory
A prominent university in South Africa will make learning the Zulu language compulsory for all incoming students starting next year, the first time ever that the country’s higher education sector has made such a move to impose the teaching of an indigenous African language, writes Palash Ghosh for International Business Times.
UNITED KINGDOM
IT expert jailed for Oxford and Cambridge cyber attacks
A man who used his IT expertise to launch cyber attacks on the websites of Oxford and Cambridge universities has been jailed for two years, reports the Press Association.
FRANCE
Hollande’s higher education reforms face test
François Hollande’s embattled administration faces a major test this month as it attempts to push sweeping changes to higher education through the French parliament, writes Jack Grove for Times Higher Education.
SOUTH KOREA
SAT scandal shines spotlight on academic competition
The recent cancellation of US college entrance exams in South Korea – the first time SAT tests have been called off nationwide anywhere in the world for suspected cheating – is throwing the spotlight on the country's hyper-competitive academic environment, writes Jeyup S Kwaak for The Wall Street Journal.
MYANMAR
Myanmar's educators reach out to the world
Yangon Technological University has come a long way since it was the site of anti-government student protests in 1988 that eventually spread across Myanmar. The campus has been refurbished and a sense of normality is beginning to return. One important question is how the university is going to forge links with the outside world, writes Lara Farrar for The New York Times.
LIBYA
Government to send 10,000 students abroad
Problems in Libya’s higher education system, which is plagued by overcrowding and poor teaching standards, have prompted the government to send thousands of promising students abroad to complete their studies, reports the Libya Herald.
MEXICO
US and Mexico forge higher education partnership
US President Barack Obama and Mexico's President Pena Nieto have announced a partnership to expand economic opportunities for citizens of both countries and to develop a 21st century workforce for mutual economic prosperity, according to a statement from the US State Department, reports Celia Baker for Deseret News.
INDIA
Eight new research tie-ups on the cards
At a summit in June, India and the US will announce eight new agreements between top research universities, in a bid to give fresh impetus to their education diplomacy under the US$10 million Singh Obama 21st Century Knowledge Initiative, reports One India.
UNITED STATES
MIT and Russia team up to open a graduate school
During the Cold War, Massachusetts Institute of Technology scientists produced ideas and inventions, such as distant early-warning radar and satellite-tracking systems, to help the United States prevail over the Soviet Union. Today, MIT is working with the Russians, not against them, writes Oliver Staley for Bloomberg News.
AUSTRALIA
University secures key China partnership
Australia's top ‘China Ready’ university, the University of New South Wales, has signed the latest in a series of strategic partnerships with China's National Academy of Education Administration, cementing the Sydney-based university as China's premier higher learning partner from Down Under, reports Xinhau.
UNITED KINGDOM
Furore grows over Hawking’s Israel boycott
Celebrated physicist Stephen Hawking became embroiled in a growing furore last week over his decision to boycott a prestigious conference in Israel in protest over the state's occupation of Palestine, write Harriet Sherwood, Matthew Kalman and Sam Jones for the Guardian.
AUSTRALIA
University reform to hurt students
The Australian government’s recent proposed cuts to university funding and student loans will cost universities A$1 billion (US$1,02 billion) a year by 2017 and make it harder for people to balance study and work, the chief of the peak body for Australian universities said last week, write Bella Counihan and Sunanda Creagh for The Conversation.