02 April 2015 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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World Round-up
CANADA: Universities ramp up ties with India
That 2011 is the Year of India in Canada is a fact not lost on Canadian universities, many of which are ramping up efforts to play a larger part in serving India's skyrocketing demand for higher education, writes James Bradshaw for The Globe and Mail.
SCOTLAND: Academics lead China trade drive
Scottish academics are leading a drive to sell financial expertise in one of China's growing business centres, reports the BBC. A mission to Tianjin, east of Beijing, last week included senior representatives from six Scottish universities in a bid to win export contracts and to boost academic exchanges, research collaboration and flows of students between Scotland and China.
PHILIPPINES: Fees to be investigated
Senator Edgardo J Angara has sought an inquiry by the senate into the imposition of redundant and excessive miscellaneous fees by higher education institutions in the Philippines, which he said was a major factor contributing to rising drop-out rates, writes Mark Anthony N Manuel for the Manila Bulletin.
PAKISTAN: Board proposed for medical education
A consortium of public and private medical universities has proposed a Pakistan National Board for Postgraduate Medical Education to promote uniform postgraduate medical education in the country, writes Amer Malik for The News.
KENYA: Call to scrap admissions board
Private universities are calling for the scrapping of the Joint Admissions Board, a move likely to attract protests from public universities, reports Kenfrey Kiberenge for The Standard.
CHILE: Police clash with student protesters
At least 25,000 university student protesters have marched through the streets of Santiago, Chile's capital, calling for reforms in education, reports Aljazeera. Local news reported that police used water cannons to disperse demonstrators after some students broke through police barricades and others hurled stones at riot police.
AUSTRALIA: New bill to protect academic freedom
Academic freedom would be explicitly protected under legislation introduced by the Gillard government. The proposals honour a commitment made by the Labour Party before last year's election and follows lobbying by the National Tertiary Education Union, writes Dan Harrison for the Sydney Morning Herald.
INDIA: University fees may rise every three years
The central government will push for a 10% hike in university fees every three years in a bid to nurse the institutions to financial health, a move that could have a far-reaching impact on India's resource-strapped higher education system, writes Prashant K Nanda for Livemint.com.
IRELAND: Students to pay more after fees reversal
Education Minister Ruairi Quinn performed a U-turn on a key election promise last week by admitting he would not reverse a EUR500 (US$719) hike in college registration fees. And the minister refused to rule out the introduction of higher education fees and further student charges, another pre-election pledge, writes Edel O'Connell for The Independent.
CHINA: Top university accused of selling out
Corporate sponsorship is part of life for universities in the UK and US, which regularly raise hundreds of millions of pounds from donors. As Chinese universities race to transform themselves into world-class institutions, they are increasingly looking outwards for funding. But Tsinghua University's decision to rename its No 4 Teaching Building, in large gold letters, as the Jeanswest Building seems to have crossed a line, writes Malcolm Moore for The Telegraph.
AFGHANISTAN: Graduating against the odds
Students chat happily on manicured lawns, proudly donning their black graduation robes and snapping photos of each other with family and friends. It is 26 May, graduation day at the American University of Afghanistan - the first since the university opened in 2006 - and the violence and misery of this country's decades-long war could not seem further away, writes Erin Cunningham for the Chronicle of Higher Education.
US: Government to monitor fee increases
The US federal government will attempt to restrict the rise of college tuition from 1 July. After that date, colleges with large tuition increases will be required to report to the Department of Education the reason for the increase and the actions that will be taken to minimise costs. The department will publish much of the reports for the public online, writes Meagan Clark for Times Observer.
ISRAEL: Ministry announces sites for research centres
The sites for the first four research centres of the Israeli Centres for Research Excellence (I-CORE) programme were announced by the Education Ministry last week, part of a multi-year plan to strengthen Israel's position as a global leader in academic research and stem the brain drain of Israeli academics, writes Ben Hartman for the Jerusalem Post.
INDIA-GERMANY: Higher education summit?
India has proposed to host an Indo-German higher education summit this year to explore issues such as mutual recognition of qualifications and joint research programmes, reports the Daily News and Analysis.
AUSTRALIA: Standards for overseas students' safety
Universities will need to provide housing guarantees to international students when the Australian Human Rights Commission releases its minimum standards for student safety later this year, writes Yuko Narushima for the Sydney Morning Herald.
AUSTRALIA-CHINA: Chinese classes miss point
China's mass circulation newspaper, China Daily, has highlighted the paradox of Chinese who go abroad to study English only to find themselves in a classroom full of their countrymen, writes Bernard Lane for The Australian.
UK: No-confidence campaign launched
A campaign for a nationwide vote of no confidence in the government's higher education reforms has been launched by a group of academics and students at the University of Oxford. The movement urges student unions and academic bodies across the country to put forward motions expressing no confidence in the policies of David Willetts, the Universities and Science Minister, writes Simon Baker for Times Higher Education.
UK: Call to action over dearth of black professors
Leading black academics are calling for an urgent culture change at UK universities as figures show there are just 50 black British professors out of more than 14,000, and the number has barely changed in eight years, reports Jessica Shepherd for The Guardian.
UK: Rush for university places wanes
The surge in the number of university applicants has finally waned after a decade of record rises, amid concerns that higher tuition fees are already deterring students, writes Kate Loveys for the Daily Mail.
CHINA: Mongolian students locked in
Authorities in the Inner Mongolia region of China have closed the gates of major universities and colleges in the wake of protests sparked by the death of a herder at the hands of a mining truck driver, reports Radio Free Asia.
MALAYSIA: Raffles Education to set up university
Singapore-based Raffles Education, one of the largest private education groups in the region, is setting up a university in Johor, Malaysia, reports Xinhuanet. According to the Straits Times, the new institute, Raffles University Iskandar, will be located in Johor's Iskandar EduCity, an education hub located in the town of Nusajaya just across a link with Singapore.
CHINA: University enrolment crisis looms
For decades, attending university has been the Chinese version of the 'American Dream', promising a rise from rags to riches for those who have studied hard and invested heavily in education. But a recent slump in the number of students enrolling to take the college entrance examinations has awakened universities to an inconvenient truth: they will soon have to contend with a decreasing number of students, write Yao Yuan, Guo Jiuhui and Liu Baosen for Xinhuanet.
US: Enrolment growth outpaces faculty growth
Growth in enrolments has outpaced growth in public university and college faculty and staff in recent years, according to a new report issued by the State Higher Education Executive Officers, writes Andrea Fuller for The Chronicle of Higher Education.
US: Chinese agents exploit student influx
Leon Lin was ecstatic when he found out he'd be leaving home in southern China to study at the University of Connecticut. As the Chinese agent whom his parents paid US$5,000 to help him get into the school told him, the university's flagship campus at Storrs was a highly ranked institution, with 25,000 students and ready access to Boston and New York City, writes Daniel Golden for Bloomberg News.
TAIWAN: New plan to boost foreign student numbers
Taiwan's Cabinet approved a four-year NT$5.68 billion (US$196 million) plan on 26 May that will boost education sector competitiveness and promote the country as a hub of advanced learning in East Asia, writes Kwangyin Liu for Taiwan Today.