28 February 2017 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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World Round-up
NETHERLANDS
Pressure mounts on lecturers as student numbers rise
Almost seven in 10 university academic staff say they have to work under a lot of pressure and 70% do at least six hours’ overtime a week, reports DutchNews.nl.
UNITED KINGDOM
SOAS students call for rethink of Eurocentric curriculum
Students at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, or SOAS, are calling for white philosophers to be largely removed from the curriculum to better represent the university's focus on Asia and Africa, writes Lucy Pasha-Robinson for the Independent.
JAPAN
Are female scholars taken seriously in Japan?
Not many women attend the University of Tokyo, colloquially known as Todai. Less than 20% of its undergraduates are female and now, it appears, the school itself is wondering if it shouldn’t do more to raise that rate, writes Philip Brasor for The Japan Times.
CHINA
University bans staff criticism of Communist Party
A leading university in southern China has banned its teachers from criticising the constitution and leaders of the Communist Party in class, the latest sign of tightening ideological control on the country’s college campuses, writes Nectar Gan for South China Morning Post.
CHINA
Professor forced to retire after Mao comments
A Shandong province professor who posted controversial comments about Mao Zedong online has been forced to retire after he was removed from his political advisor role, reports Global Times.
QATAR
Human rights-focused student denied study visa
A masters student at Georgetown University in the United States who researches human rights and migrant labour in the Middle East was denied a student visa to spend the fall semester at the university’s Qatar campus, renewing concerns about the limits on academic freedom at American campuses in the region, writes Elizabeth Redden for Inside Higher Ed.
UNITED KINGDOM
Dismay over ‘severe’ foreign student visa cutback plan
The Home Office is considering cutting international student numbers at United Kingdom universities by nearly half in a threat that is being greeted with dismay by university heads, who say some good overseas applicants are already being refused visas on spurious grounds, writes Anna Fazackerley for the Guardian.
TURKEY
More university academics face arrest
Turkish prosecutors ordered the arrest of 87 people linked to Istanbul University in an investigation targeting followers of United States-based cleric Fethullah Gülen, accused by Ankara of being behind July's attempted coup, reports Daren Butler for Reuters.
ISRAEL
Over 300 academics vow to boycott new ‘ethics’ code
Over 300 academics signed a petition last weekend saying they will ignore any recommendations in the new ethics code commissioned by Education Minister Naftali Bennett, writes Yarden Skop for Haaretz.
TURKEY
How one woman is standing up to university purges
The Human Rights Monument is a well-known hallmark in a bustling pedestrian area in the heart of Ankara. Over the past month, a second fixture has appeared on the site: a woman with a banner. Despite 17 detentions, often by heavy-handed police, Nuriye Gulmen – one of hundreds of academics suspended from office after the 15 July attempted coup – keeps returning to the site to demand her job back, writes Sibel Hurtas for Al-Monitor.
JAPAN
Kansai University bans military research subsidies’ use
Kansai University’s president said the institution will ban its researchers from applying for Defense Ministry funds for projects that could then be used for military technologies, reports The Japan Times.
AUSTRALIA
In world first, university issues climate bond
One of Australia’s top universities has achieved a world first, becoming the first higher education institution to issue a ‘climate bond’, reports Study International.
UNITED KINGDOM
Brexit by the numbers: the fear of brain drain
British universities fear losing large swathes of their research staff as the country faces up to Brexit, the split with the European Union. More than 31,000 academics at UK universities are non-British EU citizens, and so may lose their rights to live in the United Kingdom after Brexit, writes Daniel Cressey for Nature.
FRANCE
Opposition to priest as choice to lead French university
The appointment of Michel Deneken, a Roman Catholic priest and theology professor, to lead the University of Strasbourg has attracted controversy among some who argue that the choice violates the spirit, if not the letter, of French laws calling for separation of church and state, writes Elizabeth Redden for Inside Higher Ed.
PHILIPPINES
Drug tests proposal for incoming college students
The Philippines' Commission on Higher Education is now considering making drug testing mandatory for incoming college students. This comes in the midst of President Rodrigo Duterte's war against drugs in the country, writes Emily Marks for University Herald.
HONG KONG
Legislators raise alarm over non-local student numbers
Legislators have criticised the government’s higher education funding adviser for its lax regulation of non-local student numbers, saying places for mainland students could come at the expense of locals, writes Peace Chiu for South China Morning Post.
RUSSIA
Universities profit from tripling of foreign students
The appeal of Russian education for foreigners has risen in recent years as the decrease in the value of the ruble compared with foreign currencies has made studying in Russia much more affordable. The government is trying to capitalise on this trend in several ways, writes Alexei Lossan for Russia Beyond the Headlines.
ZAMBIA
e-Learning partnership to bolster student intake
The Zambian Open University expects to increase its student intake twofold in 2017 after it entered into a partnership with eLearnAfrica for its courses and degree programmes to be made available on the platform, writes Matshelane Mamabolo for IT Web Africa.
INDIA
Academics criticise ‘maximum government’ moves
The University Grants Commission has found a toehold in the process for reappointing principals of colleges affiliated to central universities, prompting cries of "maximum government" from academics, writes Basant Kumar Mohanty for the Telegraph India.
UNITED STATES
Battle with for-profit colleges flares
The US Department of Education slapped a set of tough conditions on a US$1.1 billion private equity bid for the company that owns the University of Phoenix, the nation’s largest for-profit university, after years of trying to rein in the for-profit college industry, reports Bloomberg News.
CHINA-UNITED KINGDOM
Two countries sign higher education action plan
During the annual UK-China Education Summit, the United Kingdom Secretary of State for Education Justine Greening and Chinese Minister for Education Chen Baosheng signed off on an action plan under the UK-China Partners in Education framework that outlined key priority areas for education cooperation beyond 2016, writes Beckie Smith for The PIE News.
SOUTH AFRICA
Universities have not sufficiently transformed – Report
Public universities have not sufficiently transformed in the past 20 years and discrimination remains prevalent‚ particularly on the grounds of race‚ gender‚ disability and socio-economic class, writes Ernest Mabuza for Times Live.
KENYA
University students threaten to strike over GMO ban
University students are opting out of biotechnology courses due to fears they might not get internship and jobs after graduation due to the ongoing ban on genetically modified, or GM, food crops by the government, writes Dennis Odunga for the Nation.
UNITED KINGDOM
University lowers entry grades for disadvantaged
A leading university is to increase its intake of disadvantaged students by offering places with reduced grades, writes Sean Coughlan for the BBC.
PERU
Thousands of students march against education changes
Thousands of students marched in Peru’s capital Lima last week in defence of quality education. They took to the streets as congress decides on the future of the country’s reforming education minister, writes Dan Collyns for CCTV America.