21 February 2017 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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World Round-up
TANZANIA
Diploma students now eligible for government loans
Students pursuing diploma courses in line with national priority areas will soon start receiving educational loans following the scheduled amendments of the Higher Education Students' Loan Board Act contained in the Written Laws (Miscellaneous Amendments) No 4 Bill of 2016, writes Rose Athumani for Tanzania Daily News.
GLOBAL
Billionaire offers biggest education prize
A Chinese technology billionaire is offering the world's most valuable education prize. The Yidan Prize will award nearly US$8 million every year to two research projects that have the potential to "transform" global education, writes Matt Pickles for the BBC.
CANADA
‘Not clear’ if US student surge is Trump-related
University admission experts say this year’s surge in the number of Americans applying to Canadian universities is not a clear sign that today’s students are dodging Donald Trump the way their grandparents dodged Vietnam, writes Simona Chiose for The Globe and Mail.
SOUTH AFRICA
Students shut down 15 colleges over unresolved issues
Protesting students shut down about 15 of the 50 public technical and vocational education and training colleges earlier this month as a result of a host of unresolved issues with the department of higher education and training, writes Prega Govender for the Mail & Guardian.
AUSTRALIA
Universities body warns against radical reform
The peak body representing Australian universities has urged the Turnbull government not to pursue a "dramatic overhaul" of the nation's higher education system as it prepares to legislate a new round of university reforms, writes Matthew Knott for The Sydney Morning Herald.
VIETNAM
Universities focus on easy-to-teach majors
Universities are focusing on enrolling students in majors which are easy to teach and learn and do not require high investments in facilities and laboratories, despite warnings issued by government about the excessive supply of graduates in finance, and business administration, reports VietNamNet Bridge.
EGYPT
No increase in university tuition fees – Minister
There will be no increase in tuition fees for both public and private Egyptian universities, Higher Education Minister Ashraf El-Sheehy said last weekend, reports Ahram Online.
IRAQ
Universities focus on teaching English
Iraqi employers say English language ability is the top skill they want from graduates as potential employees, writes Michelle Grajek for Al-Fanar Media.
LIBYA
Sirte University prepares to reopen
While high prices and shortages of building materials are challenging townspeople returning to Sirte, plans are under way to restart higher education, reports the Libya Herald.
SWITZERLAND
Students push for easier refugee access to universities
The Swiss students’ union VSS is calling on the federal and cantonal authorities to change the rules to make it easier for refugees to access the Swiss university system, reports The Local.
ISRAEL
University heads resist ‘political expression’ plan
The Committee of University Heads called last Tuesday on Education Minister Naftali Bennett, who also chairs the Council for Higher Education, to drop his plan to draw up a code of ethics for political expression by academics, writes Yarden Skop for Haaretz.
EUROPE-UNITED KINGDOM
EU applications for university places down 7%, MPs told
Applications from European Union students for places at United Kingdom universities have dropped by more than 7%, according to latest figures, a committee of MPs investigating the impact of Brexit on higher education has been told, write Sally Weale and Caelainn Barr for the Guardian.
INDIA
Former PM urges universities to guard their freedoms
Former prime minister Manmohan Singh last week warned academics against the threat posed to independent thinking and free expression at Indian universities and urged authorities to zealously guard their autonomy as well as students' right to express dissent, reports The Times of India.
UNITED STATES
Trump pays $25 million to settle Trump University cases
US President Donald Trump has now paid US$25 million to settle three lawsuits against his now-defunct Trump University, signalling that a judge’s approval of a settlement agreement remains on track for 30 March, writes Elliot Spagat for Associated Press.
NIGERIA
Suicide attack hits University of Maiduguri
At least four people, including a university professor, were killed and 15 others injured in a suicide bomb attack on a university campus in northeast Nigeria, reports Al Jazeera.
EGYPT
Two universities start religion-blind admissions
Ain Shams University administrators and others will no longer ask students about their religious affiliations on academic forms, a move that follows last year’s policy change by cross-town rival Cairo University, writes Jacob Wirtschafter for Al-Fanar Media.
GLOBAL
South Korea tops the charts in research and development
In the battle of ideas, Sweden climbed to second place, Finland cracked into the top five, but South Korea dominated the 2017 Bloomberg Innovation Index, which scores economies using factors including research and development spending and the concentration of high-tech public companies, write Michelle Jamrisko and Wei Lu for Bloomberg.
UNITED KINGDOM
Lords call for ban on 'contract cheating'
The fraudulent essay industry must be outlawed, leading academics and lords have urged as figures reveal that more than 20,000 students are buying professionally written essays every year, writes Harry Yorke for The Telegraph.
VIETNAM
Ministry sets stricter requirements for doctorates
The Ministry of Education and Training has set stricter requirements for doctorates, hoping that changes in the new regulations will shift the quality of PhDs to the regional level, writes Thanh Mai for VietNamNet Bridge.
CHINA
Officials announce plans for 16 new top universities
In an ambitious blueprint, Chinese officials have announced intentions to set up 16 top universities by 2030, spreading across several provincial regions outside Beijing and Shanghai, where a number of famous universities are already situated, reports China.org.cn.
UNITED STATES
Concerns over bid to end university tenure
Lawmakers in two states recently introduced legislation that would eliminate tenure for public college and university professors. The bills, along with the recent gutting of tenure in Wisconsin and other events, have some worrying about a trend, writes Colleen Flaherty for Inside Higher Ed.
INDIA
Education institutions to adopt villages for development
Leading higher education institutions will adopt villages, carry out field studies and come up with developmental solutions which could be implemented by district authorities under a unique initiative planned by the central government, reports PTI.
TAIWAN
Associations urge Tsai to address talent ‘drought’
Five higher education associations recently issued a joint statement calling on President Tsai Ing-wen to address a perceived “drought” in the nation’s talent pool in the same way she handles matters of national security, saying Taiwan is being “sidelined” by the international community in the field of higher education, writes Sean Lin for Taipei Times.
IRAQ
Iraqi forces raise flag at university in push against IS
Iraqi special forces raised the Iraqi flag above the buildings at the Mosul University complex on 13 January as they continued the battle for control of the city against Islamic State militants, reports Fox News.
UAE
Eight universities sign link with UAE Space Agency
Academics have welcomed an agreement between the UAE Space Agency and eight universities to develop manpower for the country’s space industry, writes Melanie Swan for The National.