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World Round-up
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.
WALES
Report fuels fears of super university job losses
A government report outlining the case for a new ‘super’ university in southeast Wales has raised fresh concerns over potential job losses and campus closures. Documents obtained by the Western Mail, made public for the first time, suggest the integration of university systems would improve “efficiency and effectiveness in delivery”, writes Gareth Evans for Wales Online.
YEMEN
Students protest for separation of education and politics
Sana’a University students staged a demonstration on Wednesday demanding that studies resume separate from the political conflict inundating the university and Yemen. Students also continued to refuse the presence of military personnel on campus, writes Ashraf Al-Muraqab for Yemen Times.
NIGERIA
No more honorary degrees for politicians
The Association of Vice-chancellors of Nigerian Universities has drawn up guidelines that ban tertiary institutions from awarding honorary degrees to serving politicians, reports Channels Television.
UNITED KINGDOM
Public schools threaten university boycott
Schools should plan a repeat of action staged against Bristol almost a decade ago if institutions attempted to engineer their intake to hit controversial new admissions targets, said Chris Ramsey, the universities spokesperson for the Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference, writes Graeme Paton for The Telegraph.
EUROPE
Why some academics publish more
Motivation and the ability to network have a far greater impact on research productivity than age, gender, job satisfaction, managerial support or teaching load, writes Matthew Reisz for Times Higher Education.
UNITED STATES
Public research universities in peril – Report
They're the pride and backbone of American higher education, doing essential research and educating en masse the next generations of scientists and engineers. But a new report argues that the mission of the country's 101 major public research universities is imperilled by budget cuts amounting to a fifth of their state funding over the past decade, writes Justin Pope for Associated Press.
BRAZIL
For-profits beat global peers on loan breaks
Anhanguera Educacional Participacoes SA, Brazil’s largest for-profit university, and its two biggest Brazilian competitors are beating global peers after student loans tripled when the government reduced interest rates and made repayment easier, write Denyse Godoy and Fabiola Moura for Bloomberg Businessweek.
CHINA
Coursera to offer courses in Chinese
Chinese students head overseas in huge numbers, but some may no longer feel the need to leave home for education. Coursera, the online education platform that offers free courses from universities worldwide, is aiming to net some of the biggest consumers of overseas higher learning – Chinese – write Su Zhou and Lin Jing for China Daily.
INDIA
Higher education gets a growth pill
Concerned over declining public expenditure on higher education, India’s central government is ready with an ambitious scheme to encourage states to improve the quality and reach of higher education, writes Ritika Chopra for Mail Online India.
UNITED KINGDOM
Pricey private college draws protesters on first day
For most new students, the first day at university involves nothing more taxing than collecting timetables and planning a night out. But the first cohort of students at philosopher AC Grayling's new £18,000-a-year (US$29,000) private university had to brave a gang of egg-throwing protesters last week as they arrived for the start of term, writes Kevin Rawlinson for The Independent.