NEWS – Our correspondents worldwide report
Call for sweeping changes in tertiary education system
The Australian government should assume responsibility for all tertiary education and training while the differences in funding between universities and technical colleges should be abolished, a new report says. The radical proposals are among a sweeping set of recommendations by the multinational professional service company, KPMG.
Visa rules reformed to attract more foreign students
All international students in higher education in New Zealand will be eligible for three-year work visas under reforms of post-study work rights, aimed at attracting more enrolments and stamping out abuse by unscrupulous employers who have been misusing employer-assisted visas to trap students in underpaid work.
Revamp of university regulatory body faces opposition
The Indian government's move to replace the higher education regulator, the University Grants Commission, with a new body to improve quality and allow institutions more autonomy faces opposition in parliament and criticism that it would increase government control and politicisation of education.
China, US lead on gains in ARWU university ranking
China and the United States are the biggest gainers in the latest Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), with respectively six and four more universities in the top 500, but there is no movement at the very top with Harvard University leading for the 16th year running.
SOUTH AFRICA-UNITED STATES
Global network to boost HE capacity and PhD numbers
A higher education network that entails American and South African universities working together will strengthen various aspects of the South African higher education system, including the expansion of the PhD graduate pipeline.
One person arrested in masters-for-money scandal
A person has been arrested and a senior member of Transparency Maroc has been suspended from the association in the wake of allegations that students were being asked to pay over US$4,000 to guarantee a place on a university masters course in Morocco.
Marked progress in students taking less time to graduate
More students in Germany are obtaining degrees within a reasonable time than in the early years of the Bologna reforms, with traditional universities making the most marked progress, particularly in mathematics, education science and civil and environmental engineering departments, a new survey shows.
New masters to boost machine intelligence talent pool
A new African masters in machine intelligence funded by Google and Facebook seeks to create a community of machine intelligence practitioners in Africa to reduce the technology gap, build Africa’s economies and ultimately promote better governance.
President suspends vice-chancellor over Grace Mugabe PhD
Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa has suspended University of Zimbabwe Vice-chancellor Professor Levi Nyagura for allegedly awarding former first lady Grace Mugabe a doctor of philosophy degree ‘corruptly’ in 2014.
Rectors support campaign for deported student’s appeal
Jan Petter Myklebust
University leaders have rallied to support Professor Anne Husebekk, rector of the University of Tromsø in Norway, who has been criticised for organising a campaign to raise funds for an appeal against a decision to reject a student’s residence visa application.
Universities – The creators of the new wealth of nations
Universities make an enormous contribution to the economic and social wealth of nations through education and research, but have failed to communicate their value clearly to the public and that is contributing to the current climate of criticism.
What do the international HE programme closures mean?
Why did the Chinese government recently terminate more than 200 internationally collaborative academic programmes and five internationally collaborative institutions and what does this mean for overseas institutions looking to partner with China?
Why the Bologna Process works for higher education
The Bologna Process has made progress because of the nature of its structure, stakeholders and members, including the European Commission, and an emphasis on support over sanctions. Due to resource issues, the commission holds the power of life and death over the Bologna Process.
Can we measure education quality in global rankings?
Philip G Altbach and Ellen Hazelkorn
The race is on to establish a global teaching ranking, but experience shows that without due care the choice of ranking indicators can lead to unintended consequences. Currently, it is just not possible to adequately assess education quality for purposes of international comparisons.
Towards a global hub of collaborative research
Thomas Ekman Jørgensen
Brexit could prove an interesting test case for research-intensive countries outside the European Union that wish to contribute to the region’s research programme, showing if and how the balancing act between contribution and influence can be reached.
A new approach to global research partnerships
Mia Perry and Deepa Pullanikkatil
Changes to the traditional methodologies of collaboration between the Global North and South are necessary. That means engaging with communities in ways that allow them to contribute their traditional knowledge and co-design the research agenda.
Admitting students who later drop out is harmful
Too many colleges in the United States are tuition-fee dependent and admit students who are not ready for higher education, many of whom require remedial support and drop out after their first year. The solution is counter intuitive: they need to reduce their enrolment to achieve sustainability.
Russian trolls stoke public discord on vaccine science
Twitter bots and Russian trolls have spread disinformation and pushed the public to question the science behind vaccine campaigns – and in some cases the messages were sent from accounts used to interfere in the 2016 United States presidential election, a new study reveals.
Overseas China scholars face self-censorship dilemma
As China combines internal censorship and a crackdown in its Xinjiang region, with aggressive verbal attacks and informal pressure on overseas academics, the self-censorship dilemma is becoming acute for overseas scholars who comment on China’s human rights, Tibet, Taiwan independence and other sensitive topics.
University of California nears funding tipping point
After years of declining funding and rising enrolment, the University of California system is nearing a ‘tipping point’ where it cannot continue to grow with California’s population and labour needs without seeking new revenues and state reinvestment, according to a new report.
Making work-integrated learning actually work
Work-integrated learning in the higher education space may be considered a 'silver bullet' when it comes to effectively combating societal inequality by enhancing graduate employability, but when it comes to its implementation, the concept continues to be the subject of some wrangling among stakeholders.
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