University fails over 1,200 students after exam walkout
Egypt’s state-run Mansoura University has announced the mass failure of over a thousand medical students after they staged a walkout from the examination hall in protest against what they said were overly-tough questions contained in a surgery paper.
Furore as government stops popular STEM programme
Government has binned the science, technology, engineering and mathematics or STEM advanced-level scholarships geared towards final-year school pupils, saying the money will be channelled towards university students. In addition, it has done away with mathematics as a requirement for higher education students to enrol in study programmes that do not require mathematical calculations.
Government sees need to bring back library science degree
The imminent loss of important public documents due to poor archiving and inadequate library services has prompted the Rwandan government to facilitate the reintroduction of a library science degree programme which was scrapped five years ago.
US$200 million sought for university hostel expansion
The Kenyan government has asked foreign and local private investors for more than US$200 million to build hostels at three public universities this year.
Cholera risk keeps two universities shut
Following a cholera outbreak last year which forced the closure of universities and other institutions of higher learning, the Zambian government announced earlier this month that all universities – except two – could reopen on 22 January, subject to clearance from the relevant local authorities and health departments.
Higher education and the public good in Africa
A new research project undertaken across four African countries aims to find a different way of evaluating the contribution of higher education to the public and counter Western-dominated rankings that place an emphasis on research and status.
SARUA – A leading regional vision for higher education
Under the leadership of founding CEO Piyushi Kotecha, the Southern African Regional Universities Association has, over the past decade, developed a rich regional knowledge base, extensive networks, relevant regional higher education studies, innovative methodologies and programmes, as well as sound pathways to the consolidation of regional collaboration. Looking forward, the association plans to implement a new four-year strategic plan which builds upon this foundation in a large and diverse region.
Trump’s bigotry – The role of African intellectuals
The role of African academics and intellectuals on the continent and in the diaspora in strategically countering the prejudice and misinformation about Africa on the part of leaders such as United States President Donald Trump cannot be overemphasised.
HE cluster takes forward continental education strategy
Wondwosen Tamrat and Damtew Teferra
Addressing the gaps and inefficiencies created by the lack of up-to-date information and organised data in African higher education has been identified in the Continental Education Strategy for Africa as one of its strategic objectives. This priority issue is to be tackled through its Higher Education Cluster which convened for the first time at the end of last year.
Reclaiming the past to create a decolonised future
Whatever the merits of the #RhodesMustFall and #FeesMustFall student protest movements in South Africa, they have undoubtedly highlighted issues involving a tertiary education system that many consider still to be in thrall to the colonial experience.
Universities take steps to curb academic dishonesty
The excitement that marks the beginning of the academic year in the Algerian higher education sector, made up of one and a half million students, belies a crisis of credibility in the wake of several recent incidents of cheating.
Higher education challenges and solutions for 2018
The 16th meeting of the Arab Ministers of Higher Education and Scientific Research unveiled a new agenda for higher education which included a set of urgent challenges for 2018 and beyond.
Partnership launches network to boost HE online courses
REAMOOC, a network to develop innovative online university courses to improve higher education for students in Sub-Saharan Africa, has been launched by a 10-member European and African partnership.
Pan African University to craft strategic plan
The Pan African University is developing a strategic plan to help guide its activities over the next five years and identify key priorities, including resource mobilisation and how to offer relevant training.
Carnegie supports RUFORUM post-doctoral fellowships
The Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture or RUFORUM, a network of 85 universities supporting capacity-building for agricultural training in Africa, has received a US$1.5 million grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York to support its post-doctoral fellowship programme on the continent.
How can higher education bring socially-just change?
Carolyn Muriel Shields
The transformative leadership series published by University World News in partnership with The MasterCard Foundation started a critically important dialogue, which needs developing, about how universities can broaden their focus from trying to be ‘best in the world’ to helping to create ‘the best world’ for everyone.
A life-changing journey from Uganda to EARTH University
A sponsored four-year degree at Costa Rica’s EARTH University, with its emphasis on practice, has been a transformative experience – not only for the individual student, but for her community back home in Uganda.
Improving the pipeline of social justice leadership
Susan V Berresford
The world needs a fresh pipeline of leaders to fight for social justice. The old ways of generating leaders will not meet the world's need to strengthen work on inequality and exclusion. Fellowship programmes for local leaders from marginalised communities may be the answer.
NEWS – Our correspondents worldwide report
Technical courses revamp focuses on practical learning
With more than half of India’s engineering graduates not able to find a job because they don’t have the skills demanded by employers, crucial curriculum changes for engineering and technical courses have been announced to make them less theoretical and more practical.
Student protesters against compulsory Mandarin punished
Two students at Hong Kong Baptist University were suspended last week after campus protests over compulsory Mandarin language being required for students to graduate. The protests took on a political tone as Mandarin is the language of mainland China but not Hong Kong.
Academic freedom is facing ‘growing threats’ – Report
There has been a “top-down backlash” since the student-led Umbrella Movement protests of 2014-15 in which the authorities have increasingly tried to limit academic freedom and bring academia under their control, according to a new report from rights group Hong Kong Watch, which says universities’ reputations are at risk.
27 universities out-produce big economies on research
A group of 27 of the world’s top universities together produce more research than all but two of the world’s major industrialised nations, including Germany, Japan and the United Kingdom, according to a new report published in Davos to coincide with the World Economic Forum.
University leader resigns in wake of Nassar testimony
Lou Anna K Simon resigned as Michigan State University president after mounting pressure in the wake of testimony that the university failed to respond adequately to multiple allegations raised with staff about disgraced physician Larry Nassar’s possible abuse of women on campus.
Vice-chancellor was guest at scandal-hit dinner
A university vice-chancellor was one of the guests at the elite men-only club dinner attended by billionaires, celebrities and politicians at the Dorchester Hotel in London that is at the centre of a storm over revelations that many of the 130 women employed as hostesses for the event were subjected to sustained sexual harassment, sexism and lewd remarks.
Grand coalition would offer more support for students
Germany’s Social Democrats are discussing a grand coalition with the Christian Democratic Union and the Christian Social Union, having reached agreement in exploratory talks on a number of issues, including higher education and research, where they would increase means-tested support for students.
Governing bodies need to understand universities better
Robert A Scott
To ensure universities provide value, there needs to be a greater alignment between the mission, goals and strategies of a university, the criteria for selection to a governing position, the criteria for selecting faculty and the mission for academic study.
Internationalisation of universities – the German way
Germany has developed a pro-internationalisation strategy, seeing international students as a benefit for itself and for global development. But can the country continue to buck the global trend of seeing these students as a cash cow?
At university I could not escape the shadow of war
A student from Gaza who gained a masters at Oxford and a PhD at Cambridge says in this time of growing conflict worldwide, if universities want to be truly international, they need to think more carefully about how they support international students from conflict areas.
Global universities unprepared for sea change ahead
An overwhelming majority of the participants responding to a live poll during the webinar on the megatrends shaping the future of global higher education agreed that universities face transformative changes in the next decade – but only 12% believe higher education institutions are prepared for the sea change that lies ahead.
An important show of unity on precarious employment
Emmanuelle Fick and Grace Karram Stephenson
The recent Ontario college strike has united part-time and full-time academics in calling attention to the issue of precarious employment in higher education and has made a start on improving the working conditions of short-term contract faculty.
Unpaid bills force universities to close until spring
Ararat L Osipian
Ukraine’s universities have no money to pay heating bills and have had to close their doors and send students on extended holidays until spring. The heating problem has affected universities throughout the country and has included its flagship higher education institution, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv.