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World Round-up
GREECE
Universities to be upgraded but numbers reduced
Education Minister Costas Arvanitopoulos has underlined that “upgrading public universities is a top priority”, while at the same time saying that Greece has too many universities – 40 for a country of 11 million people – and needs to consolidate or merge institutions to reduce costs, writes A Papapostolou for ANA-MPA.
EUROPE
Masters in Europe? A short hop and it’s free
Continental Europe still offers heavily subsidised higher education. And in some countries, such as Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Austria and much of Germany, it is free. Other popular destinations, such as The Netherlands and France, offer postgraduate qualifications at a fraction of the price now charged in Britain, writes Helena Pozniak for The Independent.
INDIA
Delays in bill dampen foreign university interest
When the Foreign Educational Institutions (Regulations of Entry and Operations) Bill was introduced in parliament in 2010, no less than 50 foreign universities showed interest in setting up operations in India. Two years down the line, their interest seems to have dwindled, writes Kalpana Pathak for Business Standard.
IRELAND
Economy boost from 4,000 Brazilian students
An education and research agreement that will see 4,000 Brazilian undergraduates study in Ireland over the next four years was signed last week during Enterprise Ireland’s trade mission to Brazil, writes Grainne Rothery for Business and Leadership.
UNITED KINGDOM
Universities urged to waive fees for Syrian PhDs
Universities in the United Kingdom are being urged to waive the tuition fees of Syrian doctoral students who have had their funding from the Damascus government cut off, writes David Matthew for Times Higher Education.
UNITED KINGDOM
Overseas students: No more night queues to register
University leaders have welcomed a rule change that will mean overseas students no longer have to register in person with the police. Last week saw students queuing at night outside an office in London in order to meet a registration deadline. But from Monday, students will be able to register through their universities, reports the BBC.
UNITED STATES
The crisis of education as a public good
Since the 1970s, we have witnessed the forces of market fundamentalism strip education of its public values, critical content and civic responsibilities as part of its broader goal of creating new subjects wedded to consumerism, risk-free relationships and the destruction of the social state, writes Henry Giroux of McMaster University in Canada, for Counterpunch.
UNITED STATES
Colleges build in business school ‘arms race’
When it comes to attracting the best business students, Ali Mallekzadeh knows what it takes, writes Mará Rose Williams for The Kansas City Star. “Very astute students walk through the doors of your college with a check list,” said Mallekzadeh, dean of Kansas State University’s college of business administration.
UNITED KINGDOM
Cambridge sells first bonds as investor demand surges
Cambridge University, the 800-year-old alma mater of Isaac Newton and Stephen Hawking, sold its first bonds, tapping investor demand that let Portugal Telecom SGPS SA (PTC) issue its first benchmark notes since 2011, writes Katie Linsell for Bloomberg News.
UNITED KINGDOM
Oxbridge rejects new graduate 'report cards'
Oxford and Cambridge have rejected plans to scrap traditional degree classifications in favour of school-style report cards, it emerged last week. The two institutions are among up to 10 members of the elite Russell Group with no plans to award graduates with the new Higher Education Achievement Report, writes Graeme Paton for The Telegraph.
UNITED STATES
Emory University apologises for anti-Semitism
Emory University is apologising for years of anti-Semitism at its dental school, during which dozens of Jewish students were failed or forced to repeat courses, leaving many feeling inadequate and ashamed for decades despite successful careers, reports Associated Press.
INDIA
In times of doubt, grab another degree
Economic depression drives youngsters back to campus. The lack of job opportunities in India has spurred tech graduates in Kolkata to arm themselves with an additional degree rather than try their luck in the job market, writes Prithvijit Mitra for The Times of India.
GLOBAL
Hackers target student records of 53 universities
Hackers last week published online thousands of personal records from 53 universities including Harvard, Stanford, Cornell, Princeton, Johns Hopkins, the University of Zurich and other universities around the world, writes Nicole Perlroth for The New York Times.
UNITED STATES
Misconduct behind most journal retractions – Study
Research misconduct, rather than error, is the leading cause of retractions in scientific journals, with the problem especially pronounced in more prestigious publications, writes Paul Basken for The Chronicle of Higher Education.
UNITED STATES
One in five households carrying student debt – Study
The Pew Research Center last week released a snapshot of US student debt. In short, it's not a pretty picture. Roughly one in five American households either had outstanding student loan debt or loans in deferment, according to data from 2010, the most current available. The 19% figure is particularly striking because it's up four points from 2007, and is twice what it was two decades ago, writes Andrew McCarthy for Slate.
UNITED STATES
Public colleges pledge to increase graduates
Nearly 500 public colleges that account for three-quarters of all four-year college students pledged last week to produce a combined 3.8 million additional graduates by 2025, an ambitious target that would help bring the United States closer to its goal of regaining its lost global lead in college attainment, reports Associated Press.
NIGERIA
Police probe student housing massacre
Nigerian police said last Wednesday that they had arrested ‘many’ suspects following a massacre at a student housing area that left at least 40 people dead, with victims shot or their throats slit, writes Aminu Abubakar for Sapa-AFP.
IRELAND
Law change to force university compliance over pay
Legislation governing Ireland’s universities is to be amended so that the education minister can require them to comply with government guidelines on remuneration and staffing numbers, reports RTÉ News Ireland.
INDIA
India accounts for just 3.5% of global research output
At a time when India is being looked at as the next big knowledge superpower, this could come as a shocker: just 3.5% of global research output in 2010 was from India, according to a study by Thomson Reuters, writes Kounteya Sinha for The Times of India.
GREECE
Universities tap into gas and oil
A young man wearing a yellow hard cap grins as he stands proudly in front of an offshore drilling platform. Emblazoned on the front are the words, “Master’s in Business Administration – Concentration: Oil, gas and energy management”, writes Poly Pantelides for Cyprus Mail.
UNITED KINGDOM
Private universities complain of insecurity
On the face of it, private providers of higher education have never had it so good. Long regarded as a threat by many in the sector, they have been warmly welcomed by the coalition government. And business is booming. Yet senior figures in the private sector are getting anxious. They say they are still wrestling with a system that was not set up to accommodate them, and until changes are embedded by legislation, they face an uncertain future, writes Anna Fazackerley for the Guardian.
UNITED KINGDOM
Top-rated Cambridge University considers debut bond
Britain’s Cambridge University said it may sell bonds for the first time in its 800-year history after winning a top credit rating from Moody’s Investors Service, write John Glover and Katie Linsell for Bloomberg.
AUSTRALIA
Online challenge to campus life
Online education is pushing some traditional campuses to the brink of extinction and universities will have to reinvent their role to preserve a bricks and mortar presence. That stark view emerged from university leaders at a conference in Melbourne on high-speed broadband and higher education, writes Benjamin Preiss for The Age.
UNITED STATES
Race-neutral university admissions can work – Report
As the US Supreme Court revisits the use of race in college admissions, critics of affirmative action are hopeful the justices will roll back the practice. A new report out last week offers a big reason for their optimism: evidence from at least some of the nine states that don't use affirmative action that leading public universities can bring meaningful diversity to their campuses through race-neutral means, writes Justin Pope for Associated Press.
EUROPE
Universities ordered to admit deprived students
Scotland's Education Secretary Michael Russell has ordered elite universities to admit hundreds more students from the most deprived backgrounds under a £10 million (US$16.2 million) initiative, writes Andrew Denholm for The Herald.