25 May 2016 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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World Round-up
Call for region to join forces for better education
Thailand is working to join hands with more of its neighbours in the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) to drive the region's educational improvement – starting with research sharing – according to a top education official, writes Wannapa Khaopa for The Nation-Asia News Network.
Nation's universities attract fewer applicants
According to statistics from Vietnam’s Ministry of Education and Training, the number of candidates who sat for university entrance examinations this year has decreased by 27.2% compared with last year, down to 662,096 candidates from more than 900,000, reports VietNamNet Bridge.
Top universities warned over 'slow' admissions progress
The number of disadvantaged students admitted to sought-after UK institutions remained flat last year, it was claimed. The Office for Fair Access said attempts to attract more applicants had been too “slow” and all institutions would be expected to set more ambitious targets for 2012-13, writes Graeme Patron for The Telegraph.
Distance learning degrees are on the increase
Employers and universities have been putting their heads together. Recently the Higher Education Academy reported on the outcomes of eight flexible learning pathfinder projects, which found that employers favoured distance learning as a way of delivering career-related study, writes Stephen Hoare for the Guardian.
Renowned scholar urges Makerere to cut student intake
Makerere University needs to cut down on its student population if it is to improve the quality of teaching and research, which has reached an all-time low, celebrated scholar Professor Mahmood Mamdani has advised, writes Francis Kagolo for The New Vision.
Ministries showcase nation as regional education hub
Uganda’s Minister of Trade Amelia Kyambadde and Education Minister Jessica Alupo have led a delegation to Rwanda for a three-day higher education exhibition that opened last Wednesday, writes Taddeo Bwambale for New Vision.
Grameen Bank founder appointed university chancellor
The founder of the pioneering Bangladeshi micro-lending Grameen Bank is to become the new chancellor of Glasgow Caledonian University. Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus succeeds journalist, broadcaster and politician Lord Macdonald of Tradeston, reports the BBC.
Minister hints at ‘further developments’ around merger
Welsh Education Minister Leighton Andrews last week hinted there may be “further developments” regarding the creation of a new university in southeast Wales, writes Gareth Evans for Wales Online.
Student-led protests may spark 'Mexican Spring'
The rise of a social media-based student movement is shaking up Mexico's 1 July presidential race. This is happening just as the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI – which ruled for seven decades until its defeat in 2000 – seems poised to return to power, writes Guillermo Trejo for Los Angeles Times.
Colleges' efforts to internationalise slip in some areas
American colleges say they are more supportive than ever of international education, but in many cases their efforts to internationalise may fall short, a new report from the American Council on Education suggests, writes Karin Fischer for The Chronicle of Higher Education.
Universities deny favouring overseas selection
Universities in the United Kingdom have rejected claims that home students are being displaced by potentially more lucrative overseas students with lower grades, reports the BBC. Universities UK said institutions are recruiting the maximum number of home students allowed by government.
University crackdown spawns a ‘lost generation’
The dormitories are empty, the once charming bungalows of professors overgrown with vines and weeds. Only grass grows where the student union building stood before soldiers obliterated it with dynamite. This is Yangon University, once one of Asia's finest, and a poignant symbol of an education system crippled by Burma’s half century of military rule, writes Denis D Gray for Associated Press.
Bill Gates on higher education
Bill Gates never finished college, but he is one of the single most powerful figures shaping higher education today. That influence comes through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, perhaps the world's richest philanthropy, which he co-chairs and which has made education one of its key missions, writes Jeffrey R Young for The Chronicle of Higher Education.
Washington state's broken universities funding model
This can’t go on. That is our sentiment after adopting another annual budget for the University of Washington that includes a 16% tuition increase for resident undergraduates. This is the fourth year in a row our students have seen a double-digit tuition increase, write two members of the university’s board of regents, Kristianne Blake and Craig W Cole, for Seattle Times.
Ousted university head reinstated in Virginia
Facing a torrent of criticism, the University of Virginia trustees made a stunning turnabout last week, voting unanimously to reinstate the president they had forced to resign over concerns that the university was not adapting fast enough to financial and technological pressures, writes Richard Pérez-Pena for The New York Times.
University heads oppose Ariel institution upgrade
Presidents of Israeli universities last week expressed opposition to the official granting of university status to an Ariel educational institution. In a letter, the Council of Presidents of Israeli Universities call on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to stop the declaration of the Ariel University Center as a university, saying the move would “deal a mortal blow to the higher education system in Israel”, writes Ben Hartman for The Jerusalem Post.
Government unveils radical shake-up of tertiary sector
The Scottish government has unveiled a radical shake-up of universities and colleges. Education Secretary Mike Russell said he had accepted “virtually all” the recommendations of a review of university governance, which called for elected chairs, quotas for female board members and curbs on the pay of high-earning principals, writes Chris Marshall for The Scotsman.
Poorer pupils lag in race for university places – Study
Teenagers from the most deprived backgrounds are lagging dramatically behind wealthy peers in the race for university places because of failure at school, according to major research published last week, writes Graeme Paton for The Telegraph.
Centre gives deemed universities entrance test freedom
India’s Ministry of Human Resource Development last week said all ‘deemed’ universities across the country will be given the option of admitting students to graduate courses based on the government’s proposed common entrance test or their own entrance examinations, writes M Ramya for The Times of India.
Marketing psychologist quits over ‘massaged’ data
Clever statistical sleuthing by an anonymous fraud hunter in the United States appears to have led to the downfall of a marketing researcher at Erasmus University Rotterdam in The Netherlands, writes Martin Enserink for Science.
Generation Y researchers fail to use new technologies
Few PhD students in the UK explore new technologies in their research or understand the range of information available to them, a report commissioned by the British Library and higher education technology body Jisc has found, writes Elizabeth Gibney for Times Higher Education.
Millions of students hit by halt of part-time courses
Stakeholders in the Nigerian education sector have expressed displeasure at the decision of the National Universities Commission to suspend part-time programmes in Nigerian universities, writes Kuni Tyessi for Leadership.
Many universities lack well-qualified teachers
It has been revealed that 20% of universities inspected in Vietnam failed to meet regulations on the number of teachers and their qualifications, reports VietNamNet Bridge. In particular, seven universities had fewer than 50 official teachers each.
Colleges move towards absolute bans on smoking
As a political science major at Ohio State University in the United States, Ida Seitter says, she lit up many a cigarette to help her through the stress of exam season. Right or wrong, they were her security blanket as she toiled through college, writes Julie Carr Smyth for Associated Press.
Manchester's famous club inspires new masters
Not much surprises those with hazy memories of the glory days of Manchester’s Hacienda – but news that the legendary club, the Madchester music scene and Peter Hook, bass player with Joy Division and New Order, are all to feature in a university's new masters course may raise the odd eyebrow, writes Maev Kennedy for the Guardian.