University fee increases pushed through

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on April 27th, 2017 by steve

“Almost all universities in England will be able to add annual inflation-linked increases to tuition fees until 2020, in a deal pushing legislation through Parliament before the general election. The higher education legislation had been intended to make higher fees dependent on improved teaching …” (more)

[Sean Coughlan, BBC News, 27 April]


Brexit university ‘brain drain’ warning

Posted in Governance and administration on April 25th, 2017 by steve

“University staff from EU countries should be guaranteed a right to stay and work in the UK after Brexit to avoid a ‘damaging brain drain’, says a report from MPs. The education select committee wants urgent steps taken to end uncertainty over the future status of EU academics …” (more)

[Sean Coughlan, BBC News, 25 April]

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If the UK wants to remain a key global player after Brexit, the intake of foreign students must be protected

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on April 24th, 2017 by steve

“In the wake of last month’s triggering of Article 50, the tumultuous prospect of a hard Brexit has been widely speculated on. Sources say the economy has fared surprisingly well since the referendum, with growth both in the manufacturing and service sectors. But evidence suggests its effects have already begun to hit higher education …” (more)

[Dave Wheeler, Independent, 23 April]

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Against the market in universities

Posted in Governance and administration on April 14th, 2017 by steve

“Higher education has now joined the ­growing list of subjects (immigration, multiculturalism, nuclear armaments, freedom of speech) about which it is increasingly difficult, it seems, to have an informed public argument …” (more)

[Rowan Williams, New Statesman, 14 April]


Universities to Lobby Against International Fees for Northern Irish Students Post-Brexit

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on April 11th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The leaders of Irish universities will be lobbying to ensure that Northern Irish students are not subjected to higher, international-level fees, as negotiations begin over the UK’s exit from the EU …” (more)

[Kathleen McNamee, University Times, 11 April]

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Student loan interest rate set to rise by a third after UK inflation surge

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on April 11th, 2017 by steve

“Students appear to be paying a heavy price for the UK’s inflation surge after the Brexit vote, which will drive the interest rate on their loans up by a third to 6.1%. The rise in inflation, driven by a decline in the value of the pound since June, means students will be charged substantially more interest on their loans, despite the fact that many other consumers are benefiting from record low interest rates …” (more)

[Rupert Jones, Guardian, 11 April]

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More university students are using tech to cheat in exams

Posted in Teaching on April 10th, 2017 by steve

“A growing number of UK university students are cheating in exams with the help of technological devices such as mobile phones, smart watches and hidden earpieces. Data obtained by the Guardian through freedom of information requests found a 42% rise in cheating cases involving technology over the last four years – from 148 in 2012 to 210 in 2016 …” (more)

[Sarah Marsh, Guardian, 10 April]

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How to strangle an export industry

Posted in Governance and administration on April 10th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Brexit, now that is is really happening, is going to cause a major strain on this country. In that context, and accepting that we don’t want to steal their boots while the body is still warm, it behooves Ireland to take every opportunity presented to take business from the UK …” (more)

[Brian M Lucey, 10 April]

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Brexit is ‘Game on’ and Irish Higher Education Needs to Prepare for the Challenge Ahead

Posted in Governance and administration on April 2nd, 2017 by steve

Ireland“As far as Brexit is concerned it is now ‘game on’. For those who hoped for reprieve from an agonising decision by the UK electorate, that hope is fast receding. There were many such in Ireland. And we have heard much, and will hear more, about the implications for us as the UK exits the EU. It is largely a malign scenario, with lurking dangers to the peace process and our economy high on the ‘fear-o-meter’ …” (more)

[Tom Boland, University Times, 1 April]

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Overpaid and overbearing: survey flays UK university management

Posted in Governance and administration on March 30th, 2017 by steve

“More than three-quarters of UK university staff are dissatisfied with the way their institution is run, according to the preliminary results of a major survey that present damning feedback about the management of the country’s higher education sector …” (more)

[Matthew Reisz, Times Higher Education, 30 March]

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Brexit is a big opportunity for Irish universities, says education firm

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on March 30th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“A global education firm which is setting up in Ireland to recruit international students to Irish universities says Brexit represents a major growth opportunity. Latest figures show the volume of international students applying to UK colleges is falling, while the number of international applicants to Irish universities has jumped by 17% this year …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 29 March]

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US-linked top university fears new rules will force it out of Hungary

Posted in Governance and administration on March 29th, 2017 by steve

“One of the top universities in central and eastern Europe may be forced out of Hungary under a draft law being prepared by the hard-right government, which has also accused eight British institutions of ‘operating unlawfully’ in the country …” (more)

[Andrew MacDowall, Guardian, 29 March]

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University tuition fees in England now the highest in the world, new analysis suggests

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on March 29th, 2017 by steve

“University tuition fees in England are now the highest in the world, new analysis has found. The average annual cost of £9,188, makes it significantly more than higher education in the US, where the average student pays $9,410 (£7,518) per annum, according to the Student Loan Calculator website …” (more)

[Ben Kentish, Independent, 28 March]

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Does higher education have a retention problem?

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on March 29th, 2017 by steve

“When asking if UK higher education has a ‘retention problem’, the obvious place to start is the known data on lower retention rates for certain groups of students, particularly mature, black and minority ethnic and students from poorer socio-economic backgrounds …” (more)

[Sorana Vieru, Wonkhe, 29 March]

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Trinity professor expresses concern over possible fee increases for NI students

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on March 24th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“A Trinity professor has expressed her ‘horror’ that Northern Irish students, following Brexit, may have to pay non-EU fees in order to study at a third level institution in the Republic of Ireland and vice-versa. Erasmus Smith’s Professor of Modern Irish History, and Chairperson of the Irish Research Council, Jane Ohlmeyer spoke of her concern at an Oireachtas Education Committee meeting on Tuesday …” (more)

[Aisling Grace, Trinity News, 24 March]

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Implications of Brexit for the Irish Educational System: Discussion

Posted in Governance and administration on March 24th, 2017 by steve

IrelandFiona O’Loughlin (Kildare South, Fianna Fail): Everybody is in situ. This part of the meeting involves a discussion on the possible impact of Brexit on the Irish educational system. We will have the opportunity to listen to the views of stakeholders in this very important area. I took the opportunity over the weekend to look at statistics regarding Irish students abroad. In 2016, 12,000 Irish students studied in the UK while 2,000 studied in Northern Ireland …” (more)

[Joint Oireachtas Committee on Education and Skills, 21 March]

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UK universities’ confusion on Brexit ‘toxic’, says Germany’s U15

Posted in Research on March 23rd, 2017 by steve

“UK higher education institutions have failed to set out a clear strategy for staying in the European Union’s research framework, and this uncertainty is proving ‘toxic’ for new joint projects, the chair of an association of the biggest research universities in Germany has warned …” (more)

[David Matthews, Times Higher Education, 23 March]

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Brexit could lead to increase in CAO points for Irish students

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on March 22nd, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Brexit could lead to increases in CAO points if thousands of Irish students who study in the UK opt to remain at home, a university president has warned. Dublin City University president Brian MacCraith said up to 12,000 Irish students currently study in universities across the UK …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 21 March]

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‘Happiness in Higher Education’

Posted in Life on March 20th, 2017 by steve

Abstract: This paper investigates the higher education literature surrounding happiness and related notions: satisfaction, despair, flourishing and well-being. It finds that there is a real dearth of literature relating to profound happiness in higher education: much of the literature using the terms happiness and satisfaction interchangeably as if one were tantamount to the other, such conflation being due to the move towards consumerism within higher education and the marketisation of the sector. What literature there exists that actually deals with the profound happiness of students in higher education, generally argues that in the United Kingdom institutions do not currently do enough to promote happiness in higher education. These findings imply that flourishing, contentment and well-being should be regarded as legitimate goals of higher education, alongside satisfaction and related economic outcomes that are currently promoted across academic and policy literature, university rankings and the National Student Survey.

A Elwick and S Cannizzarro, ‘Happiness in Higher Education’, Higher Education Quarterly, First published online: 19 March 2017.

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Why the UK should stay in Erasmus – and why the programme must look beyond students

Posted in Governance and administration on March 16th, 2017 by steve

“Although some non-EU member states do participate in the Erasmus student exchange programme, it is unclear whether the UK will continue its participation following Brexit. Charlie Cadywould writes that educational and cultural exchanges will be vital for ensuring Britain does not close itself off from Europe, but that programmes like Erasmus need to do a much better job of encouraging those not enrolled at a university, such as vocational learners, to take part …” (more)

[British Politics and Policy at LSE, 16 March]

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