Threats of cuts no way to boost third level

Posted in Governance and administration on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Sir, – Dick Ahlstrom is correct (‘Funding plan for third level a recipe for disaster’, Science, Innovation, January 25th) in questioning the Department of Education’s proposals to alter the funding arrangements for higher education. The recent Cassells report on the sector revealed a continuing rapid increase in demand for third-level education, with 60% of school-leavers entering the system in 2015 …” (more)

[Joan Donegan, Irish Times, 26 January]

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Anonymous €3m donation to get new UCD athletics track up and running

Posted in Governance and administration on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“After six seemingly hopeless years on the waiting list University College Dublin (UCD) is getting a new athletics track thanks to an anonymous €3 million donation. The money will cover the cost of building the facility and maintaining it over the next 20 years. The previous track on the Belfield side of campus fell into disrepair in November 2011 and was subsequently ripped up …” (more)

[Ian O’Riordan, Irish Times, 26 January]

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Waterford IT bosses accused of bluffing to PAC

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The chairman of the Dáil Public Accounts Committee, Sean Fleming, has accused bosses at Waterford Institute of Technology of ‘bluffing’ to the committee about its relationship with commercial companies under its control …” (more)

[Daniel McConnell, Irish Examiner, 26 January]

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Queen’s University appoints Ian Greer as vice-chancellor

Posted in Governance and administration on January 26th, 2018 by steve

“Queen’s University has appointed Ian Greer as its new president and vice-chancellor. Professor Greer, born and educated in Scotland, is currently vice president of the University of Manchester. He replaces Professor Patrick Johnson who passed away suddenly at the age of 58 in June last year while on holiday in Donegal …” (more)

[Belfast Telegraph, 25 January]

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Observers should be used to prevent gender bias in universities European report recommends

Posted in Governance and administration on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Trinity is among the League of European Research Universities recommending external observation of hiring processes. Independent observers should be included on academic hiring committees to avoid gender bias, the League of European Research Universities (LERU) recommends. …” (more)

[Lauren Boland, Trinity News, 25 January]

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Funding plan for third level a recipe for disaster

Posted in Governance and administration on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The phrase ‘a recipe for disaster’ comes to mind while reading through Department of Education and Skills proposals to alter the funding regime for our higher education institutions. Last week it released its Higher Education System Performance Framework 2018-2020, a plan to link the funding of higher education to being able to achieve the delivery of ‘key national priorities’ …” (more)

[Dick Ahlstrom, Irish Times, 25 January]

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Grade inflation could be the next battleground for higher education

Posted in Teaching on January 26th, 2018 by steve

“Data published by HESA in January 2018 shows that more than a quarter of UK undergraduates completing their studies in 2017 were awarded first-class honours. In 2012, the corresponding figure was only 18% …” (more)

[Allan Howells, Wonkhe, 25 January]

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People with jobs will now be eligible for free third level courses

Posted in Governance and administration on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Thousands of free or heavily subsidised third level courses in areas where there are skills shortages are to be made available to people in employment for the first time. The Springboard+ initiative has until now been heavily targeted at unemployed people in need of upskilling to help them to re-enter the labour market …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 25 January]

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The university of the future will be interdisciplinary

Posted in Research on January 26th, 2018 by steve

“Structures and labels are important for bringing order to confusion, providing a sense of direction and purpose. But they can lose their value as the world changes around them. In a world where interdisciplinary research is of growing importance, dividing universities by academic departments creates barriers not benefits …” (more)

[Zahir Irani, Guardian, 24 January]

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New President of NUI Galway wants clean slate

Posted in Governance and administration on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The new President of NUI Galway has kicked off his ten-year term by extending an olive branch to colleagues, inviting female lecturers who are suing the college for discrimination to a meeting and vowing to review the ‘precarious contractual positions’ of many workers. Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh takes up the most senior position of his academic career at a particularly fraught time in the university’s history …” (more)

[Denise McNamara, Connacht Tribune, 25 January]

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Student accommodation plan for docks halted by appeal

Posted in Governance and administration on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“A major student accommodation development planned for the docks in the city is being opposed. Late last year, Bonham Dock Limited was granted planning permission for 2 seven and eight storey blocks at the former Topaz oil facility at the docks. However, that decision is being appealed to An Bord Pleanála …” (more)

[Galway Bay FM News, 24 January]

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Ireland must invest in higher education to benefit from Brexit

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Brexit fatigue has set in. While we are delighted that a ‘hard Brexit’ looks likely to be avoided and that the common travel area is to be preserved, we have little sense of what a ‘soft Brexit’ might mean for research and education. Will, for example, the UK disengage from EU research funding or from the Erasmus+ mobility programme? What might this mean for Ireland? …” (more)

[Jane Ohlmeyer, Irish Times, 24 January]

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Byrne welcomes passage of Technological Universities Bill

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Education Thomas Byrne TD has welcomed the passage of the Technological Universities Bill. Deputy Byrne said, ‘The passing of this Bill has been a long time coming and it has been a key priority for Fianna Fáil to see its passage through the Dáil …'” (more)

[Fianna Fáil, 24 January]

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What marking exams tells us

Posted in Teaching on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“This is exam marking time in DCU and I’ve lost count of the number of conversations I’ve had with frustrated and slightly depressed colleagues who are walking around campus, slightly dazed, and saying things like ‘my students learned nothing from me!’ Of course, there are still lots of fantastic students in our universities; students who are hard-working, motivated and focused. But …” (more)

[educationandstuff, 24 January]

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Minister Mitchell O’Connor successfully steers the Technological Universities Bill through the Dáil last night

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The Technological Universities Bill has now completed all stages in the Dáil and moves a step closer to enactment. The Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD has secured the passage of the Technological Universities Bill through the Dáil last night. Minister Mitchell O’Connor said, ‘Today marks a significant milestone in progressing this vital piece of legislation …'” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 24 January]

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Technological universities a step closer following passage of Bill

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The creation of new technological universities has moved a step forward after legislation paving the way for the move was passed by the Dáil. The Technological Universities Bill provides for the merger of existing Institutes of Technology and the creation of a new category of university. Ten of the State’s 14 Institutes of Technology form part of four separate groups in Dublin, Munster, Connacht-Ulster and the southeast who are bidding to become technological universities …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 24 January]

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Colleges defend asking job applicants their political persuasion

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on January 26th, 2018 by steve

“Further education colleges have defended asking job applicants which political party best represents their views on equality monitoring forms. The issue was first raised in December over the question being used for South Eastern Regional College (SERC) posts. And further concerns have been raised after it was noticed on monitoring forms for Belfast Metropolitan College (BMC) applicants …” (more)

[Brendan Hughes, The Irish News, 24 January]

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New era at NUI Galway: Let’s hope it bodes well for women’s promotions

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on January 26th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“A new era has begun at NUI Galway. We hope it becomes the era of gender equality where the women who have filed discrimination suits against the university are – after what is now a nine-year wait – finally promoted. Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, a Galway native, took over as president of the university this month, ending the 10-year reign of Dr Jim Browne. Dr Browne gave a stunning parting interview to Cois Coiribe, NUI Galway’s annual magazine for alumni, that at best could be described as hypocritical …” (more)

[Micheline’s Three Conditions, 24 January]

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