Thursday, 13 September 2012

University World News - Issue No 0238

This week:


NEWS: Our correspondents worldwide report

EUROPE
EUA reviews strategies for mobility
Ard Jongsma
A European University Association review that set out to examine mobility strategies at European universities stumbled across the persistent problem of gathering reliable and comparable data on mobility, designed a set of tools to alleviate it and in the process compiled a most interesting snapshot of the current state of affairs in Europe.

INDIA
Poor quality, few seats push 600,00 students abroad
Alya Mishra
Inadequate higher education infrastructure and poor quality courses are pushing 600,000 Indian students to top universities overseas – and are costing the country around Rs950 billion (US$17 billion) in foreign exchange annually – a study has found.

UNITED KINGDOM
Legal challenge to international student ban
David Jobbins
The British university barred from teaching students from outside the European Union prepared to challenge the decision in court last week, as politicians continued to attack government policy on international students.

DENMARK
OECD ‘calls for reform’, Denmark takes it easy
Ard Jongsma
On 4 September, the OECD published a review with a press release titled “OECD calls for reform of post-secondary vocational education and training in Denmark”. On the same day, the Danish authorities sent out the same report with a press release concluding: “Danish VET system praised by OECD.” Both are right, but the Danish interpretation better captures the gist of the review than the OECD’s own.

SRI LANKA
Government suddenly orders all universities to reopen
Dinesh De Alwis
The Sri Lankan government unexpectedly decided to reopen all state universities last week, despite an ongoing lecturer strike. It is thought the move was a response to political and student union pressures, and to enable institutions to prepare for the new academic year.

SRI LANKA
Exam fiasco – Court orders admission of extra students
Dinesh De Alwis
The shattered hopes of thousands of Sri Lankan students whose university entrance marks were miscalculated could be restored after the Supreme Court last week ordered public institutions to admit extra students in the new academic year.

EGYPT
President promises freedoms to university students
Ashraf Khaled
Egypt’s first elected civilian President Mohammed Mursi has promised to remove decades-old restrictions on student activities in the country’s universities.

TUNISIA
New regime changes direction of higher education
Jane Marshall
Tunisia is preparing for a change of direction for universities away from the policies of the old regime of former president Zine al-Abedine Ben Ali. There are plans to set up a national consultation on higher education to improve quality rather than increase the quantity of institutions.

MIDDLE EAST
Cairo Declaration calls for higher education quality
Wagdy Sawahel
Experts representing Arab countries recently concluded the fourth annual conference of the Arab Organization for Quality Assurance in Education by announcing the Cairo Declaration, in terms of which Arab standards for quality education similar to those achieved internationally are to be formulated.

KENYA
Private universities, students call for admissions reform
Gilbert Nganga
Kenya’s private university investors are lobbying the government to change the law to allow them to attract high-performing school-leavers – currently the preserve of their public rivals – and they have the overwhelming support of students.

CÔTE D’IVOIRE
Universities finally reopen after two closed years
Jane Marshall
Universities in Côte d’Ivoire reopened last week after two years of closure, and have been rehabilitated after the ravages of the post-electoral crisis.

FEATURES

GLOBAL
What do transnational education students really want?
Yojana Sharma

Students involved in transnational education – learning in a different country from where the degree-awarding institution is based – are less concerned about the awarding institution’s reputation and more about a flexible learning environment and a close fit in terms of subjects available for study.

INDIA
China has become top destination for medical students
Alya Mishra

Six years ago, when he was preparing to sit for multiple medical entrance examinations, Dr Vishal Swaroop had not heard of Liaoning province in China, five hours east of Beijing. Today he has a medical degree from Liaoning Medical University in the coastal city of Jinzhou.

GLOBAL
First international journal of children’s play
Geoff Maslen

A team of academics from around the world have published the first International Journal of Play, a peer reviewed 114-page publication on the many activities of children at play. “Our intention is to produce a journal that reflects, challenges and advances an understanding of play across the alphabet of scholarly disciplines,” say the editors.

2012 IEASA conference in Cape Town

The International Education Association of South Africa, or IEASA, held its annual conference in Cape Town from 29 August to 1 September. University World News was there, along with more than 250 academics and practitioners of international higher education from around the world. This is the first of a two-part Special Report on the conference.


GLOBAL
Bring internationalisation back into academia – De Wit
Karen MacGregor

The internationalisation of higher education must be taken out of international offices and “brought back to where it belongs – in academia”, according to Hans de Wit. It is a mistake to see research and internationalisation as administrative issues residing in a research or an international office.

SOUTH AFRICA
Government to draft an internationalisation policy
Karen MacGregor

Eighteen years after South Africa’s new democracy ushered in tens of thousands of foreign students, the government is drafting policy frameworks and an international relations strategy for international higher education.

WORLD BLOG

UNITED STATES
Football 10, academic quality 0
William Patrick Leonard

American universities that invest heavily in football and basketball programmes may be scoring an own goal since most require heavy subsidies. They could instead invest the money in boosting academic quality, which would attract more international students and boost their global standing.

COMMENTARY

Benoît Millot

International university rankings and tertiary system benchmarking results come to similar conclusions about the top universities and countries. They also suggest that well-resourced systems perform better and that decisions made by universities and national policy-makers make a difference.

UNITED KINGDOM
A big mess: When universities meet the border agency… 
Susan L Robertson

The decision by the UK Border Agency to withdraw London Metropolitan University's licence to teach non-EU students has created huge debate. The university must accept some of the blame, but the UKBA has produced an over-complex system and appears not to understand the effect its decision could have on the UK's standing in international higher education.

GLOBAL
Relax – Higher education won't be killed by MOOCs
Stephen H Foerster

It has been claimed that MOOCs will spell the death of higher education as we know it. But many people will continue to prefer traditional learning and elite university credentials will still count for more. MOOCs are a great new tool for educationists, but overstating their importance could create false expectations that end in disappointment.

AFRICA
Harmonisation and tuning: Integrating higher education
Karola Hahn and Damtew Teferra

The harmonisation of higher education in Africa is a multidimensional process that promotes the integration of tertiary systems in the region. The objective is to achieve collaboration across borders – in curriculum development, standards and quality assurance, and joint structural convergence and consistency of systems as well as compatibility, recognition and transferability of degrees to facilitate mobility.

1 comment:

sabkon wells said...

hi. thanks for sharing such detailed review and informative post.

International Student in US