18 October 2017 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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World Round-up
IRAN
Authorities deny Princeton graduate student’s appeal
Iranian authorities have denied the appeal of Princeton University graduate student Xiyue Wang, who had been convicted of espionage and sentenced to 10 years in prison, the university announced recently, reports Town Topics.
CHINA
Inside the US$4.5 billion business of education tourism
Top overseas universities are reporting record numbers of Chinese tourists this summer as more middle-class Chinese ‘tiger’ parents try to expose their children to wider academic horizons, write Alice Yan and Zhuang Pinghui for South China Morning Post.
UNITED KINGDOM
Top universities to set up own entry examinations
Britain’s leading universities are scrambling to introduce their own entrance exams in a move which threatens to undermine the authority of the new ‘toughened up’ A-levels, write Camilla Turner, Luke Mintz and Flora Carr for The Telegraph.
UNITED STATES
University of Texas removes four Confederate statues
The University of Texas has removed four Confederate monuments in the wake of violent clashes in Virginia earlier this month, reports Reuters.
CANADA
Universities grapple with court’s copyright decision
As the new academic year approaches, Canadian universities are grappling with the Federal Court of Canada’s recent copyright decision against York University, writes Sara Bannerman for The Conversation.
VIETNAM
How the best education can lead to worse job prospects
While Vietnam’s schools equip students with basic skills for low-wage assembly-line work, its colleges and universities are failing to prepare youth for more complex work. As wages rise and basic manufacturing leaves for less expensive countries, that may threaten the government’s ambition to attain middle-income status, defined by the World Bank as per capita income of more than US$4,000, or almost twice the current rate, writes Nguyen Dieu Tu Uyen for Bloomberg.

INDIA
Up to 53% faculty posts vacant in central universities
Most nationally funded institutions, including the Indian Institutes of Technology, National Institutes of Technology and universities, are conducting classes with over one-third of faculty positions vacant, prompting the government to launch a major recruitment drive, writes Manash Pratim Gohain for The Times of India.
NEW ZEALAND
University entrance requirements may be tightened
University entrance requirements are likely to be tightened because too many students cannot write well enough, writes Adele Redmond for Stuff.
AUSTRALIA
Top university announces new fixed minimum entry points
The University of Sydney will for the first time publish its minimum ATARs – Australian Tertiary Admissions Ranks – for entry into most courses, in a bid to provide more certainty for students and ensure entry is based on academic standards rather than demand, writes Pallavi Singhal for The Sydney Morning Herald.
INDIA
Europe emerges as popular study destination for students
France has set a target of recruiting 10,000 Indian students by 2020 and ambassador Alexandre Ziegler reckons that it “looks very possible”, writes Ishani Duttagupta for The Economic Times. And the number of Indian students choosing Germany has been growing by 15-20% per year.
GHANA
Government is ‘killing’ technical universities – Union
The Technical Universities Teachers Association of Ghana has issued an ultimatum to government to constitute the governing councils for the various technical universities or risk triggering serious labour unrest in that sector, writes Kobina Welsing for Starr FM.
INDIA
Agency to fund higher education set to take off
The Higher Education Financing Agency is set to take off soon, with the Ministry of Human Resource Development asking centrally funded higher education institutions to send in their project proposals to be considered for financing by the agency, writes Vikas Pathak for The Hindu.
LIBERIA
Partnership to introduce country’s first PhD programmes
The Association of Liberian Universities has signed a memorandum of understanding with Ghana Technology University College and the MS Ramaiah University of Applied Sciences in India to deliver the first ever PhD programmes in Liberia, writes Willie N Tokpah for Front Page Africa.
UNITED STATES
University aims to educate 50,000 refugees by 2022
Inspired by the success of a Southern New Hampshire University programme that allows hundreds of refugees in Rwanda to access its courses, a group of anonymous donors approached its president with a challenge: What would it take to educate 50,000 refugees each year? Now they are funding a US$10 million study to answer their own question, writes Michael Casey for Associated Press.
INDIA
Government puts foreign universities plan on hold
The government is putting its plan to allow foreign universities to operate in India on the back burner after pursuing it for the last several years and will instead focus on its world-class university plan, writes Prashant K Nanda for Livemint.
JAPAN
Budget cuts fuel frustration among academics
Japan’s premier scientific research institution, RIKEN, celebrated turning 100 this year with a grand ceremony attended by the empress and emperor. But not everybody was in the mood to party. RIKEN used to be known as a paradise for scientists because of its generous funding. No longer: as Japan squeezes funding for universities and research institutes, the cracks are starting to show, reports Nature.
MALAYSIA
Bangladeshi students duped by fake universities
An investigation by journalists in Malaysia has found that thousands of Bangladeshi students were brought into the country by fraudulent private universities offering them higher education through agents, and are now working as undocumented workers instead, reports the Dhaka Tribune.
UNITED KINGDOM
Universities under fire for donations from dictatorships
Universities should not accept donations from dictatorships, MPs have said, following a Telegraph investigation into donations made to British institutions by authoritarian regimes, write Camilla Turner and Harry Yorke for The Telegraph.
GLOBAL
Scholars urge universities to promote moderate Islam
A conference of Islamic scholars from Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and Malaysia last Monday explored the role of universities in strengthening moderate Islamic thought and urged Muslim communities to combat religious extremism and societal division by spreading knowledge about moderate Islam, writes Ismira Lutfia Tisnadibrata for Arab News.
INDIA
Foreign student interest in universities drops – Report
International students are not applying to Indian universities, which have recorded a drop in the number of enrolments, a new report reveals – a result researchers say reflects the unfulfilled potential of the country’s education system, reports Study International.
ISRAEL
Chinese enrolment at universities ‘growing steadily’
The influx of Chinese students at Israeli universities has been growing steadily in recent years. At the forefront of this enrolment boom is the University of Haifa, which currently boasts some 200 Chinese students among its student body, compared to 20 in 2013, representing a 1,000% increase, writes Sarah Levi for The Jerusalem Post.
JAPAN
Tokyo denied an increase in private university students
The education ministry has decided not to let enrolment rise at private universities based in Tokyo’s densely populated 23 wards, in principle, starting from next April, reports JIJI.
SOUTH AFRICA
Concern over copyright plan’s impact on academic work
The Department of Science and Technology has raised concern over a provision in the Copyright Amendment Act that would vest copyright in the state where the state funds the person or organisation creating the work, writes Linda Ensor for Business Day Live.
THAILAND
University journalism schools need to adapt – Experts
Experts say journalism schools need to adapt and undergo fundamental shifts in how courses are taught in order to survive in the age of social media platforms and technology or they will face steadily declining enrolments, writes Dumrongkiat Mala for the Bangkok Post.
SOUTH AFRICA
More graduates to join jobless queues
The rise in unemployment is expected to continue until 2018 with graduates most affected. This is according to Professor Carel van Aardt, a researcher at the Bureau of Market Research at Unisa, writes Siboniso Mngadi for the Sunday Tribune.