Archive for 13 June 2010

Making philanthropy work for universities

Posted in Governance and administration with tags on 13 June 2010 by Steve

“As the debate about higher education funding and the return (or not) of tuition fees gathered pace in Ireland, most (but not all) politicians adopted the favoured posture of head in the sand: they didn’t want tuition fees in case this brought out hostile middle class voters, and they couldn’t offer much (or any) more public funding. So they tended to offer make-believe solutions …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 13 June]

Do You Like Your E-Reader?

Posted in Life with tags on 13 June 2010 by Steve

“My Kindle’s great. It’s just not a book. I use it to read, and I don’t use it to read. What it has done is make me look at my own reading practices and those of colleagues, trying to understand some of the many different behaviors that we call ‘reading’, and how they flourish or don’t flourish. It makes me wonder if Amazon.com’s Jeff Bezos really likes to read ­ or what he means by ‘reading’ …” (more)

[James J O’Donnell, Chronicle of Higher Education, 13 June]

Journalists and the ‘scientific breakthrough’

Posted in research with tags on 13 June 2010 by Steve

“… The media, however, don’t seem to grasp this essential point. They descend on the meeting in droves where they summon presenters to press conferences based on the one-paragraph press releases that the scientists are encouraged to supply. They don’t attend the lectures. If my experience is anything to go by, they focus on at most 5% of the presentations, selecting those that they judge will make a good story of interest to the general public. Then during the week of the Festival, there is a plethora of newspaper articles which report on the selected presentations, inevitably talking about them as if the work is entirely new …” (more)

[BishopBlog, 13 June]

Academic Battle Delays Publication by 3 Years

Posted in Legal issues with tags on 13 June 2010 by Steve

“… The paper is a critique of a rating scale that is widely used in criminal courts to determine whether a person is a psychopath and likely to commit acts of violence. It was accepted for publication in a psychological journal in 2007, but the inventor of the rating scale saw a draft and threatened a lawsuit if it was published, setting in motion a stultifying series of reviews, revisions and legal correspondence …” (more)

[Benedict Carey, New York Times, 11 June]

QUB falls seven places in Guardian rankings

Posted in Governance and administration with tags , on 13 June 2010 by Steve

“Queen’s University Belfast has fallen seven places in the Guardian’s University Guide for 2011. The university fared well with regard to student satisfaction with teaching but just over half of respondents stated that they were satisfied with feedback. The university scored 57.8 out of 100 in the Guardian’s ratings …” (more)

[Emma Gallen, The Gown, 12 June]

Academic corruption undermining higher education

Posted in Legal issues with tags on 13 June 2010 by Steve

“Even at China’s best universities plagiarism and falsified data are preventing the country from developing advanced science, says a world-renowned mathematics professor. ‘(Academic corruption) is serious enough to keep the development of China’s advanced science from success. If it weren’t, I would not have taken the trouble to speak out. There is no scholar denying it in China; they are just not willing to talk about it in public’, laments one of most distinguished mathematicians …” (more)

[Guo Jiaxue, China Daily, 2 June]

Our universities are standing on the brink of catastrophe

Posted in Governance and administration with tags on 13 June 2010 by Steve

“If there were any doubts about what would be the first major challenge for this new coalition government, they were answered this past week: university funding. Vince Cable lit the blue touch paper (in the Observer) with the suggestion that the number of university places could be cut …” (more)

[Steve Smith, Observer, 13 June]

French are Erasmus mobility champions

Posted in Fees and access with tags , on 13 June 2010 by Steve

“The French are the new ‘champions’ of student mobility under the European Union’s flagship Erasmus programme. More than 28,000 students left France with the scheme last year for higher education studies abroad – an increase of 9%. They dislodged the Germans who had formed the biggest Erasmus contingent since 2003-04 …” (more)

[Jane Marshall, University World News, 13 June]

What’s the point of graduation season?

Posted in Life with tags on 13 June 2010 by Steve

“On both sides of the Atlantic, the period from mid-May to mid-July is one when hundreds of thousands of young people, most of them in their early 20s, go through a significant and often joyous rite of passage. They put on strange clothes hired specially for the day – which most of them will never use again – and their admiring and adoring mothers often show up wearing big hats with elaborate floral decorations and broad brims …” (more)

[David Cannadine, BBC News Magazine, 11 June]