Leaving Cert review to focus on easing ‘points race’ pressure

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on February 20th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“A major review of the Leaving Cert which gets under way on Tuesday is to examine ways of easing the ‘points race’ and better preparing students for alternatives to university such as apprenticeships. Ireland currently has the highest proportion of school-leavers in the EU who progress to third level. By contrast, far fewer students here follow more vocational routes …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 20 February]

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Experience of Mitchell scholars ‘continues long after leaving Ireland’

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Life on February 19th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The US-Ireland Alliance was set up by former political aide Trina Vargo in 1998 amid concerns about the relationship between the countries, with the Mitchell Scholarship aiming to connect future US leaders to Ireland. More than 200 students have studied at postgraduate level in Ireland under the programme named after former US senator George Mitchell, who chaired the talks leading to the 1998 Belfast Agreement …” (more)

[Simon Carswell, Irish Times, 19 February]

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‘A gender equality paradox’: Countries with more gender equality have less female STEM grads

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Research on February 18th, 2018 by steve

International“Countries with greater gender equality see a smaller proportion of women taking degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), a new study has found …” (more)

[TheJournal.ie, 18 February]

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Education: Expansion of third-level colleges forms key part of NDP

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on February 16th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Plans to expand universities and institutes of technology to meet growing student numbers forms a key part of the Government’s 10 year National Development Plan for the education sector. A major €8 billion school building programme at primary and second level will also lead to an average of 20,000 additional school places each year, along with upgraded PE halls, science laboratories and use of digital technology in teaching, learning and assessment …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 16 February]

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Erasmus scheme expansion to benefit thousands of Irish students

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 14th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Last week Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said one of his biggest regrets was never taking the opportunity to study abroad during his college years. While he says he had the option of going on Erasmus to ‘Berlin, Madrid or Barcelona’, he let the chanceslip by …” (more)

[Arlene Harris, Irish Times, 11 February]

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Universities resist quotas on teacher-training courses

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on February 12th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Third-level colleges are resisting plans by Minister for Education Richard Bruton to introduce quotas on the number of teachers they train in specific subjects. As part of a series of measures to boost the supply of teachers in key subjects such as science, maths and languages, Mr Bruton has announced plans to introduce subject quotas for postgraduate teacher education programmes at second level …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 12 February]

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Trinity needs to shake off its classist image

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on February 12th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“In truth, such a historic and prestigious school as Trinity was always going to have an image as a classist institution, based solely on the fact that, until very recently in its history, only a small percentage of society have been able to afford a college education. The most obvious result of this is that it shaped the connotations that people, mostly rural in background, have of Trinity and universities as a whole …” (more)

[Jessica Gorman, Trinity News, 12 February]

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Irish undergraduate applications to UK universities fall for fifth consecutive year

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 12th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The number of Irish undergraduate applicants to UK universities has continued to drop for the fifth year in a row, according to new data from the Universities and College Admissions Service (UCAS). In total, 31% fewer people from Ireland applied to UK universities this year than in 2012 …” (more)

[Lexi Demetroulakos, Trinity News, 11 February]

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€2.8m in overpaid college grants outstanding at end of 2016

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 10th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“More than €2.8m in overpayments of grants for college students were outstanding at the end of 2016. The figures include €1.6m paid incorrectly during that year arising from ongoing assessments by Student Universal Support Ireland (Susi) in relation to eligibility for grants or students withdrawing from courses …” (more)

[Niall Murray, Irish Examiner, 10 February]

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Third Level Fees – Placement Years

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 8th, 2018 by steve

IrelandSenator Lorraine Clifford-Lee: I thank the Minister of State for attending the House today to respond to the issue I have raised on third level fees, specifically those charged to students undertaking a year’s internship as part of their course of study. The issue was highlighted to me by a student in north County Dublin who is in her third year in Maynooth. She is on work placement for the full year. She also has a friend who is in DCU who is on a full-year’s work placement. They both have to pay their full fees to their particular universities amounting to more than €3,000 each …” (more)

[Seanad Debates, 6 February]

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A learning society?

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 6th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Since about the late 1980s, one of the key assumptions of all higher education planning has been that university education would not in future be mainly focused on the learner progression of school leavers but would be available to people at various stages of their lives and for different reasons. The concept of ‘lifelong learning’ was born, and it informed a good bit of education policy over the ensuing decades …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 5 February]

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Number of EU students applying to UK universities surges despite Brexit fears

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 5th, 2018 by steve

“More EU students have applied to study at UK universities this year despite industry-wide fears that the Brexit vote would make it less appealing, new Ucas figures show. The number of EU and international students applying for university places in the UK has increased to more than 100,000 for the first time – a rise of nearly 8% on last year, data reveals …” (more)

[Eleanor Busby, Independent, 6 February]

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UCD Developing Fee Supports For Refugees and Asylum Seekers

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 5th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Information obtained under the Freedom of Information Act 2014 has confirmed that UCD is planning to introduce applications for fee supports for refugees and asylum seekers. UCD Access and Lifelong Learning (ALL) will serve as the initial point of contact for refugees, asylum seekers, and those with leave to remain and subsidiary protection status …” (more)

[Brían Donnelly, University Observer, 4 February]

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EU refuses to help claim back unpaid student debt

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 5th, 2018 by steve

“The Danish parliament is considering challenging a ruling of the European Court of Justice which states that students that work in Denmark should be eligible to receive Danish student funding. The EU has refused to help the Danish government claim back the unpaid student loans of other EU member states’ citizens …” (more)

[Ekatherina Gillen. University Observer, 4 February]

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Third Level Funding

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on February 3rd, 2018 by steve

IrelandThomas Pringle (Donegal, Independent): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills his plans to introduce an income contingent student loan system for third level education; when he plans to carry out funding reforms in this sector; and if he will make a statement on the matter …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 1 February]

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Are the Irish over-qualified?

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 2nd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“A Sunday Times report over the weekend put Ireland at the top of the league in terms of overeducation in Europe. Cormac Lucey’s analysis suggests that some students who may not be cut out for specific levels of academic study are being pushed into third level education at the expense of vocational education. Do we need more plumbers and electricians and less white collar graduates, a question we have posed in this leader previously …” (more)

[Kieran Walsh, Munster Express, 2 February]

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Scotland confirms free tuition for EU students in 2019-20

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 2nd, 2018 by steve

“The Scottish government has extended its pledge of free university tuition for European Union students to the cohort arriving in 2019-20, covering the period immediately after the UK’s exit from the bloc. The move, announced on 1 February, increases the pressure on the UK government to extend the offer of student loan funding to EU students enrolling in English higher education institutions in 2019-20 …” (more)

[Jack Grove, Times Higher Education, 1 February]

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Drop in number of CAO applications

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 2nd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The number of applicants who have applied for college courses has dropped to the lowest level in at least five years. A total of 72,751 applicants applied ahead of the CAO’s normal application deadline at 5.15pm on Thursday, down almost 5% on the same period last year …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 1 February]

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That dreaded time of the year again

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 2nd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The reminder, which boldly announces that the remaining 50 per cent or €1,500 is due, sends a shiver tingling down my spine, sparking a multitude of thoughts and emotions. First comes the recognition that this is something that will be of benefit to me and must be paid …” (more)

[Alison O’Brien, Irish Times, 1 February]

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Time to end the academic arms race

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on February 1st, 2018 by steve

International“There are plenty of good reasons for a young person to choose to go to university: intellectual growth, career opportunities, having fun. Around half of school-leavers in the rich world now do so, and the share is rising in poorer countries, too …” (more)

[Economist, 1 February]

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