Students bitter and angry at post-exam volcanic eruption

Posted in Life on May 22nd, 2011 by steve

“… Ash from the Grimsvotn volcano eruption may now reach Scotland and Ireland as early as this Tuesday, according to latest reports, prompting a flurry of criticism from locals and students alike angered that a second such eruption has happened in the space of two years. ‘It shows how serious they [the Icelanders] are about controlling those volcanos’, one aggrieved source was quoted as saying this afternoon …” (more)

[Cork Student News, 22 May]

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Black students say they feel left out by ‘white cliques’ at universities

Posted in Teaching on May 22nd, 2011 by steve

“University coursework should be marked anonymously to deal with concerns that potential bias against a ‘foreign-sounding name’ can cost students marks, a report by the National Union of Students recommends. The report also urges universities to minimise ‘eurocentric bias’ when drawing up curriculums …” (more)

[Jeevan Vasagar, Observer, 22 May]

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Risk to UK universities posed by private sector is being ignored, say critics

Posted in Governance and administration on May 22nd, 2011 by steve

“Ministers have been accused of ignoring a damning report highlighting the threat posed by private universities to the world-class reputation of British higher education. The coalition government is driving forward reforms to allow commercial companies to set up universities to compete with traditional institutions …” (more)

[Daniel Boffey, Observer, 22 May]

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Re-hiring retired teachers in favour of young graduates is grossly unfair

Posted in Teaching on May 22nd, 2011 by steve

“Labour TD for Cork South-West Michael McCarthy has asked the Minister for Education & Skills Ruairi Quinn TD to review a practice whereby hundreds of retired teaching staff continue to work within the education system while countless newly-graduated teachers are being forced to emigrate …” (more)

[Michael McCarthy, Labour Party Blog, 22 May]

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The Last Professors: The Corporate University and the Fate of the Humanities

Posted in Governance and administration on May 22nd, 2011 by steve

“… In The Last Professors, Frank Donoghue, associate professor of English at Ohio State University, believes ‘that if we set aside the rhetoric of crisis and first look back at our situation as it existed a century ago and then forward from the present as far we can see, our problems take on a wholly new complexion’ (p. xiii). He does not dispute the depiction of the crisis camp but rather observes that ‘it has been like this for a very long time’ (p. 1). The ‘this’ is the antagonism between the corporate sector in the United States and universities …” (more)

[Current Intelligence, 22 May]

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Science: Awareness and Ignorance

Posted in Research on May 22nd, 2011 by steve

“This week I gave the Henry Sidgwick Memorial Lecture at Newnham College – an open, public lecture – using the above title. I wanted to talk about my science in the context of the need for better communication between scientists and non-scientists. What follows is roughly what I said, omitting some of the detailed science …” (more)

[Athene Donald’s Blog, 22 May]

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Supporting part-time students

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on May 22nd, 2011 by steve

“Almost every analysis of higher education trends suggests that the image of the typical university student as someone who recently completed secondary education and who now studies full-time for an undergraduate degree will soon be out-of-date …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 22 May]

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Students to use laptops in exams to avoid strain of pen and paper

Posted in Teaching on May 22nd, 2011 by steve

“DISCUSS: is it a burdensome task which unfairly penalises stressed undergraduates? Or a dependable method which has proven successful over the centuries? One of Scotland’s leading universities is considering breaking with the age-old tradition of forcing students to write their exam answers in longhand by allowing them to use their own laptops …” (more)

[Martyn McLaughlin, Scotsman, 22 May]

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