Overworked and isolated: the rising epidemic of loneliness in academia

Posted in Life, Research on February 17th, 2019 by steve

“Universities were created to be places where people learn and educate together. But a UK survey has found 46% of researchers feel lonely at work. Social isolation is particularly common among early career academics – 64% of PhD candidates report such feelings …” (more)

[Olivier Sibai and others, The Conversation, 29 January]


When enough is enough

Posted in Life on February 15th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Today (Friday) I came home from work at lunchtime. The reason: I was physically and emotionally drained. You see, this is the time of year when students who have sat exams in January want to review their scripts (‘I can’t believe I got no attempt marks!’) …” (more)

[An Irish Blog about Education, 15 February]

CAO points race ‘putting children’s health at risk’ amid fall in fitness levels

Posted in Life, Teaching on February 11th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The long-term health of teenagers is being put at risk by the race for CAO points, according to health and fitness expert Professor Niall Moyna. His warning comes as a new study shows a sharp fall in fitness levels among second-level pupils, particularly girls, after the age of 15 …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 11 February]

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The Pressure Is Not Worth It: Exam Stress And The Effects On The Body

Posted in Life on February 9th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“It is fashionable to be under pressure and to be working late and hard. This is often the status quo in the corporate world and work life. It is seen as a feat if you are doing everything until you are worn-out and exhausted and the implications of this on the individual are not taken into account …” (more)

[Cecily Nic Cionnaith, College Tribune, 9 February]

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The Public Service Superannuation (Age of Retirement) Act 2018

Posted in Legal issues, Life on February 8th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“IFUT have been receiving queries regarding the extension of the compulsory retirement age to 70, as a result of the Public Service Superannuation (Age of Retirement) Act 2018, which came into effect from 26 December 2018. The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (DPER) has prepared the following FAQs which cover issues that have been arising since the enactment of the legislation, which members may find useful …” (more)

[IFUT, 7 February]

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Have your say: Have you ever taken part in an initiation ceremony?

Posted in Life on February 4th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Typically associated with the membership rites of some college societies, hazing or initiation ceremonies can sometimes overstep the mark …” (more)

[Irish Times, 1 February]

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No, students are not all ‘snowflakes’

Posted in Life on January 21st, 2019 by steve

“My friend sighed and stomped off. We were in a Mexican restaurant last week, meeting for the final time before heading back to university, and having a conversation about media ethics …” (more)

[Max Jeffery, spiked, 21 January]


Maynooth Library Cat Update

Posted in Life on January 18th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“As I went for a quick coffee break this morning, I passed the local feline celebrity known as Maynooth Library Cat. That reminded me that quite a few people have asked me how said moggy is getting on. Well, here’s a picture I took this morning …” (more)

[In the Dark, 18 January]

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‘I’m in second year at Maynooth so this is just a weekend job!’ – 19-year-old student wins first ever race as jockey

Posted in Life on January 5th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“It was a memorable racing debut for Emma Doyle in Dundalk last night as the 19-year-old student rode Northern Surprise to victory in the Bet Victor Handicap. The horse, owned by Emma’s mother Claire and trained by her father Tim, produced a brilliant performance …” (more)

[Independent, 5 January]

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UCD the most popular cycle destination in Ireland

Posted in Life on January 2nd, 2019 by steve

Ireland“A university is the most popular cycle destination in Ireland. University College Dublin (UCD) Estate Services, which compiled data over the past year, shows that the Belfield is the single biggest cycle destination in Ireland with more than 7,000 cycle journeys to the campus on an average term day …” (more)

[Sarah Slater, Irish Examiner, 2 January]

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How I Spend My Money: A Trinity PhD student on a €6,000 stipend who’s having second thoughts about moving to Ireland

Posted in Life on December 31st, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Occupation: PhD student. Age: 31. Location: Dublin. Salary: €6,000. Monthly pay (net): €500. Monthly expenses: Rent: €700. Household bills: Included in rent. Transport: €24. Phone bill: £10 (so €11.27) …” (more)

[TheJournal.ie, 30 December]

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Posts of Professors Holding Babies in Class Often Go Viral. Is That the Reality of Students With Kids?

Posted in Life on December 20th, 2018 by steve

“The story is always the same. A professor tells a student with a young child that she (it’s always a woman) can bring her baby to class. The professor invariably holds the child, someone shares the image on social media, and the post goes viral …” (more)

[Cailin Crowe, Chronicle of Higher Education, 19 December]

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New research shows prevalence of sleep texting among college students

Posted in Life on December 14th, 2018 by steve

“Conditions like sleep walking and sleep talking are well known, there are even documented cases of driving and committing murder (homicidal somnambulism) while asleep. Sleep texting, however, is a fairly new area of inquiry but a new study from Villanova University in the United States claims that a significant number of young people are waking up to find they’ve messaged friends in their sleep …” (more)

[Marie Boran, Irish Times, 13 December]


16 years of precarious work in English language schools caused me to develop anxiety

Posted in Life on December 8th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“For 16 years I was a precarious worker. I was an experienced English language teacher but in all that time I never had a permanent contract. I never had sick pay, or holiday pay, unless it was ‘rolled into’ my hourly rate of pay. I never had guaranteed hours of work and for 16 years I didn’t get a pay rise …” (more)

[TheJournal.ie, 8 December]

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Understanding student loneliness

Posted in Life on December 4th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Some years ago, when I was President of Dublin City University, I decided to take a little time on Christmas Day to offer coffee and light Christmas snacks to students staying in the university halls of residence over the holiday period. A good number turned up …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 4 December]

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Influential Irish economist and TCD academic Louden Ryan dies

Posted in Life on November 22nd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Louden Ryan, one of the State’s most influential economists and one of Trinity College Dublin’s most charismatic professors, has died, at the age of 95. Ryan played a seminal role in forming Irish economic policy in the 1960s, advising civil servant TK Whitaker and then taoiseach Seán Lemass on a series of economic plans that would reverse decades of protectionism and self-defeating economic policies …” (more)

[Eoin Burke-Kennedy, Irish Times, 21 November]

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Early career researcher support needs urgent attention, Workshop hears

Posted in Life on November 22nd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Researchers face a wide range of issues that have been neglected for years but are now being acknowledged and addressed by relevant authorities due to work and pressure by the Irish Federation of University Teachers (IFUT) …” (more)

[IFUT, 21 November]

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One in five postgrads consider quitting over financial or personal issues

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Life on November 20th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“More than two in five postgraduate research students have seriously considered dropping out of their degree, mainly because of financial or personal issues, a major national survey reveals. The study of nearly 3,000 masters, PhD, or other students on postgrad research programmes found that more than 61% are fully or partly funded by a scholarship, but the figure drops to 57% if non-Irish students are excluded …” (more)

[Niall Murray, Irish Examiner, 20 November]

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Queen’s University students targeted in fake email scam

Posted in Life on November 17th, 2018 by steve

“A large number of Queen’s University Belfast students have been targeted in a tax refund scam. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) said that students across the UK were being targeted by scammers with fake tax refunds in an attempt to steal money and person details. HMRC confirmed that a large number of scams had been reported involving students at Queen’s …” (more)

[Belfast Telegraph, 17 November]

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1 in 3 Galway students commuting to college this year

Posted in Life on November 12th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“A recent survey published in the Connacht Tribune shows that 1 in 3 students are commuting to college in Galway. The survey was carried out with students of NUI Galway and Galway–Mayo Institute of Technology …” (more)

[Cathriona Coleman, SIN, 11 November]

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