12 February 2016 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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World Round-up
UNITED STATES
A call to action
They gathered to commiserate and commit to giving adjunct faculty a stronger voice. In what was part bonding session, part road map for the future, members of the New Faculty Majority, a group representing professors off the tenure track, met for its first national summit, writes Kaustuv Basu for Inside Higher Ed.
INDIA
Students play the numbers game
The students milling about in a leafy, outdoor cafeteria at the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, bear with nonchalance the burden of being the face of the country's demographic dividend. Part of the largest and fastest-growing segment of India's 1.2 billion-strong population, these youths seem poised, with degrees in hand, to restore the country to its double-digit growth dreams, reports the Financial Times.
ISRAEL
Leap in Israeli students in Palestine Authority
A new report published by the Knesset Research and Information Centre shows a 100% increase in the number of Israeli students, mostly from the Bedouin sector, studying in the Palestinian Authority, writes Tomer Velmer for YNet.
UNITED KINGDOM
University access tsar threatens tough sanctions
In an outspoken attack, Professor Les Ebdon said he would use the toughest possible sanctions against institutions that consistently fall short of demanding admissions targets, including a ban on charging £9,000 tuition [US$14,240] fees, write Graeme Paton and Tim Ross for The Telegraph.
UNITED KINGDOM
Bigger role for further education colleges
Further education colleges are going to play a bigger role in offering degrees in England, as colleges are awarded funding for thousands of places previously held by universities, writes Sean Coughlan for the BBC.
UNITED STATES
University heads slam Obama's cost-control plans
"Fuzzy math", Illinois State University's president called it. “Political theatre of the worst sort,” said the University of Washington's head. US President Barack Obama's new plan to force colleges and universities to contain tuition or face losing federal dollars is raising alarm among education leaders, who worry about the threat of government overreach, reports Associated Press.
UNITED STATES
Obama, Romney divided on for-profit colleges
It hasn’t had much attention on the campaign trail, but President Barack Obama and Republican front-runner Mitt Romney are sharply divided over one of the most controversial issues in higher education today – the growth of for-profit colleges – writes Ben Wolfgang for The Washington Times.
BANGLADESH
Private universities asked to move, again
Private universities that have failed to move to their own permanent campuses have been given an extended ultimatum of one year, reports The Daily Star. No universities will be allowed to open new courses, programmes, institutes or faculties or extend their campuses until they move to comprehensive campuses.
IRELAND
Four more Irish universities on the cards
Ireland could soon have four more universities if plans by institutes of technology get the go-ahead. The political battle is now up and running among the colleges to get the badge ‘technological university’, Kim Bielenberg reports for the Irish Independent.
UNITED KINGDOM
Principals’ bonuses and pay may be axed
University principals could have their bonuses axed and salary rises severely limited under radical plans proposed by a review of the higher education sector, writes Paul Hutcheon for Herald Scotland.
UNITED STATES
Detection of academic fraud on the rise
In the technical world of bioinformatics, the two University of Kansas computer scientists were riding high in 2009. Mahesh Visvanathan and Gerald Lushington published three articles with an international audience. They were invited to make a poster presentation at a conference in Sweden, writes Alan Bavley for The Kansas City Star.
UNITED STATES
‘Turnitin’ now turns to college applications
The detection of wholesale cheating in US college applications is on the rise due to the use of Turnitin for Admissions, an anti-plagiarism database service that compares student essays to an immense archive of other writings, writes Larry Gordon for Los Angeles Times.
UNITED STATES
Elite college admits it exaggerated SAT figures
Claremont McKenna College, a small, prestigious California school, said last week that for the past six years it has submitted false SAT scores to publications like US News & World Report that use the data in widely followed college rankings, write Daniel E Slotnik and Richard Perez-Pena for The New York Times.
SOUTH AFRICA
White students claim ‘racial targeting’
A racial dispute over the admissions policy at South Africa’s only veterinary institute has resurfaced with allegations that white students are being unfairly refused entry in favour of black students, writes Mogomotsi Magome for Independent Online.
UNITED STATES
Two top universities in racial discrimination probe
The US Education Department is probing complaints that Harvard University and Princeton University discriminate against Asian-Americans in undergraduate admissions, writes Daniel Golden for Bloomberg.
UNITED KINGDOM
Some Cambridge academics object to Chinese gift
A number of Cambridge lecturers object to the substantial gift from the Chong Hua Foundation, which is set to create a chair of Chinese development at a new Centre of Development Studies, write Alex Spillius, Peter Foster and Malcolm Moore in Shanghai for The Telegraph.
INDONESIA
US invests $19 million in HE
The United States will invest $19 million in Indonesian higher education over the coming years through its higher education leadership and management programme, reports The Jakarta Post.
UNITED STATES
Obama puts HE on notice
US President Barack Obama put higher education squarely in his rhetorical sights during the State of the Union address last Tuesday, calling for plans to reduce the interest rate on student loans, extend popular tax credits and shore up support for community colleges’ job training programmes, writes Libby A Nelson for Inside Higher Ed.
UNITED STATES
Students bear the burden of state cuts
Over the past year, state funding for higher education in America has declined by nearly 8%. In real terms, that amounts to $6 billion less being funnelled into the nation’s public colleges and universities at a time when the demand for the degrees they provide is at an all-time high, writes Kayla Webley for Time.
UNITED KINGDOM
Private universities plan dropped
A Higher Education Bill, which was to be introduced in the forthcoming Queen’s Speech, has now been delayed indefinitely and is unlikely to be published before 2015. The new legislation was designed to make it easier for private colleges, including big American education firms, to set up new universities in Britain, write Robert Winnett and Graeme Paton for The Telegraph.
UNITED KINGDOM
Teaching grants slashed by 18%
Teaching grants to English universities are to be cut by 18% in the next academic year, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills revealed last week, writes Vivienne Russell for Public Finance.
CZECH REPUBLIC
Students oppose university reforms
They’ve been a thorn in the side of the university reform movement from the start, and last year President Václav Klaus called them parasites. They’re the students speaking out against changes that would introduce tuition fees, along with a slew of other measures they say strip public universities of their autonomy, writes Emily Thompson for The Prague Post.
JAPAN
Universities mull switch in calendar
More than 40% of national universities in Japan are to consider following in the University of Tokyo’s footsteps by switching the start of the academic year for undergraduates from spring to autumn, a Kyodo News survey showed last week, reports The Mainichi Daily News.
CAMBODIA
Private universities create vibrant hub
Millions of tourists travel to Cambodia every year to visit the ancient ruins of Angkor Wat, an influx that has helped transform a small, laid-back village into a thriving and cosmopolitan town. But the explosion of tourism has also done something less predictable. Siem Reap, which had no universities a decade ago, is now Cambodia’s second largest hub for higher education, writes Thomas Fuller for The New York Times.
MALAYSIA
Universities given autonomy ‘to excel’
Five universities in Malaysia have been given the autonomy to become innovative and competitive institutions, said Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin last week. The aspects covered by the autonomy were governance, finance, human resources, academic management and student intake, reports the official agency Bernama.