Before Universities Demand More Autonomy, How About They Provide Quality Education?

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on August 7th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Last week, almost 40 students received fee refunds after lodging complaints about the quality of the journalism programme at NUI Galway (NUIG). For many third-level students across the country, the problems cited – poor communication from co-ordinators, lack of work placements, little access to equipment – were no doubt all too familiar …” (more)

[University Times, 6 August]

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Quality of third-level courses ‘at risk’ due to funding shortages

Posted in Governance and administration, Teaching on August 2nd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The Higher Education Authority has warned that the quality of third-level courses is at risk due to a deterioration in staff-student ratios in colleges. Its comments come in the same week it emerged that dozens of third-level students at NUI Galway were refunded fees for a course on foot of quality concerns …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 2 August]

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Refunds controversy shines light on quality of third-level learning

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on July 31st, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Students were left without basic equipment. Printers were faulty for months on end. The outdated studio regularly broke down – and when it did work, the quality was poor. Students reported little or no feedback on assignments they handed in for the first semester and had to request them in order to get an idea of how they were performing …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 31 July]

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Government to Undertake Review of Higher Education, as Funding Debate Continues

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

Ireland“After years of underinvestment and rising student numbers, the government will carry out a review of the quality of Ireland’s higher education system. The review comes as Irish colleges await a decision on a new funding model for the sector …” (more)

[Dominic McGrath, University Times, 25 July]

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Concerns over quality of third-level tuition prompts review

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

Ireland“A review into the quality of higher education following concerns over the impact of falling investment and rising student numbers will be carried out by the Government. Universities and institutes of technology have expanded to accommodate an additional 15,000 students in the space of just three years …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 25 July]


NSS results unrelated to teaching quality, study claims

Posted in Teaching on September 17th, 2015 by steve

UK“Research by University of Oxford academics provides evidence that student satisfaction scores are unconnected to exam performance. Student satisfaction scores should not be used to measure teaching quality because they have no discernible link with exam performance, a leading University of Oxford academic has claimed …” (more)

[Jack Grove, Times Higher Education, 17 September]

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World’s university ‘oligopoly’ accused of blocking OECD bid to judge learning quality

Posted in Teaching on August 6th, 2015 by steve

International“Ahelo academic and funder blame research elite for thwarting international graduate tests, but criticisms also levelled at multi-million dollar ‘failure’. Attempts to measure what students learn at different universities around the world are being thwarted by the ‘established oligopoly’ of institutions seeking to ‘prevent new information about education coming to light’, according to an academic who worked on plans for a standardised test …” (more)

[John Morgan, Times Higher Education, 6 August]

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Not Learning From Error: Teaching Excellence Failure

Posted in Teaching on July 17th, 2015 by steve

UK“The REF was meant to measure research excellence, but is far from rational process that enhances research. Now a metrics based ‘teaching REF’ – the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) – has been announced by the Universities and Science Minister, Jo Johnson, following on from a manifesto commitment …” (more)

[Charles Kowalski, Campaign for the Public University, 13 July]

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England will not take part in OECD’s ‘Pisa for universities’

Posted in Governance and administration, Teaching on July 15th, 2015 by steve

UK“Doubts now raised over future of project billed as having potential to shake up hierarchy of world higher education. England will not take part in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development’s project to measure learning outcomes of graduates around the world, delivering a blow to the plan …” (more)

[John Morgan, Times Higher Education, 15 July]

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Only 60% attend lectures and plummets across semester & week – and that’s at Harvard!

Posted in Teaching on February 11th, 2015 by steve

UK“Whenever I hear the word ‘pedagogy’ in HE, I reach for my gun. Again, institutions that have the ‘one hour lecture’ as their core ‘pedagogy’ need to have their heads examined, or at least read some basic psychology on attention, storage, practice and recall …” (more)

[Donald Clark Plan B, 11 February]

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We are where we are

Posted in Teaching on January 14th, 2013 by steve

“How did third level education get so complicated? It should be simple. An organised and enthusiastic lecturer guiding motivated students through the learning process. But it’s not and here’s my take on how ‘we are where we are’ …” (more)

[educationandstuff, 14 January]

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Can teaching quality inform the league tables?

Posted in Teaching on October 26th, 2010 by steve

“Now that the autumn season of university rankings is over, it may be worth reflecting a little on what they do or do not tell us, and what merit there may be in them …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 26 October]

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Evidence on how the quality of professors matter

Posted in Teaching on July 26th, 2010 by steve

“Applied economists have become enthusiastic users of natural experiments to generate exogenous variation in key independent variables although it has been argued that this approach has severe limitations …” (more)

[Geary Behavioural Economics Blog, 26 July]

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Education debate ‘should move on’ from resources to quality

Posted in Teaching on February 1st, 2010 by steve

“Discussions on education must move beyond the debate on resources and focus relentlessly on teacher quality, according to Don Thornhill, chairman of the National Competitiveness Council. In a major weekend address, Dr Thornhill also backed greater competition between schools which would give parents and students wider choice and boost quality …” (more)

[Sean Flynn, Irish Times, 1 February]

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Denham questions quality of teaching at universities with high drop-out rates

Posted in Teaching on June 5th, 2009 by steve

UK“The universities secretary, John Denham, has triggered a huge row today by claiming that the ‘quality of teaching and the student experience’ is behind the low participation rates at some universities. Denham’s comments came in a letter to the funding council HEFCE asking it to looking into new figures which today show that, on some measures, widening participation is going into decline, and there is a creeping increase in drop-outs. His concern is that there is too wide a variation between the performance of different universities and he wants the Quality and Assurance Agency (QAA) to look into it …” (more)

[Polly Curtis, Mortarboard, 4 June]

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