Brexit and Rising Student Fees: Will International Students Still Be Attracted to Britain?

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Our latest QS report,‘Is Brexit Turning International Students Away From the UK?’, derived from the analysis of interviews which took place in cities across Europe, saw the emergence of several key themes among perceptions of post-Brexit UK as a study destination.  One theme that stood out as particularly contentious was the role of money in higher education. Concerns about finances wound their way through many of our participant’s views, and in many different contexts.

For students, one defining benefit of the UK being part of the EU has been the reciprocal fee agreements between EU member states, which enable EU citizens to study in countries throughout Europe for the same price as domestic students. In the likely event that the UK no longer benefits from these agreements post-Brexit, then students from the EU studying in the UK will start being charged the same amount as international (i.e. non-EU) students, which are normally considerably higher fees. Read more

What can British Universities do to Reassure International Students That They Are Still Welcome in the UK?

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An uncomfortable truth we uncovered in our latest QS report, ‘Is Brexit Turning International Students Away From the UK?’, was that for some students, the events on the 27th of June 2016 and the press coverage surrounding the EU referendum result all pointed towards a major red flag; Britain is no longer welcoming to immigrants. In turn, this view has fostered a sense amongst some international students that they too are unwelcome in the UK. Students have cited the spike in hate crimes in the UK following the Brexit result to back this up, and some even held the opinion that British people were caught up in a wave of xenophobia.

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Students Reveal Brexit is Likely to Have Uneven Impacts on the UK’s Higher Education System

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Students believe the British higher education system will be ‘downgraded’ following Brexit, with uneven impacts across the sector. During interviews for our Brexit report, many students expressed the view that in a post-Brexit UK, the only universities worth applying to would be the elite, Russell Group institutions. Lower ranked universities, with a less diverse student body and faculty, are likely to lose their appeal. So, whilst universities like Oxbridge, UCL and LSE will maintain their relevance, others which toe the line of such prestige, could be hit hard and are at risk of a significant drop in international applicants. International students contribute greatly to the economy, not only in fees but also through their spending on campus and the local community. Such a prediction could therefore have a detrimental economic impact on universities which do not perform well in the global rankings. Read more

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QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017: An Overview

The QS World University Rankings by Subject, by far the richest global measure of higher education performance, have just been published for the seventh time. They contain details of university standing in 46 subjects, four of them new this year.

The subjects analysed in these rankings cover the vast majority of academic teaching and research. The rankings include a total of 13,930 positions, making them a uniquely valuable resource for students seeking the best place to fulfil their educational ambitions.

The four new subjects for 2017 are Anatomy, previously ranked within our overall Medicine ranking; Hospitality and Leisure Management; Sports-related subjects; and Theology, Divinity, and Religious Studies. The addition of Anatomy means that we now rank the Medical and Life Sciences in nine separate categories, ranging from Agriculture to Dentistry. Top for Anatomy are the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, followed by McGill in Canada.

Like our established ranking of the performing arts, our new ranking of Hospitality and Leisure management offers a fascinating glimpse of institutions which would not normally figure in a global university ranking. Number one here is the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, making its only appearance anywhere in these tables. The top 20 also contains six specialist hospitality institutions based in Switzerland.

Our new ranking of Sports-related Subjects assesses both the medical and physiological aspects of sport and its management. Its inclusion reflects the vast professionalisation of sport in recent years. Loughborough in the UK is top of this league. It is the alma mater of many leading UK athletes, and its present and former students collected 34 medals at the 2016 Rio Olympics and Paralympics. Sydney and Queensland, both in Australia, take the next two places.

Most of the top universities for Theology, Divinity, & Religious Studies are ancient establishments, often with a history as religious foundations. Our leading institution for religion, Harvard, is even named after a priest, its founder John Harvard.

The methodology remains identical to that used in 2016, allowing a direct comparison with last year’s results. The first two elements we use to produce them are the opinions of academics and employers around the world, using the surveys that are also the core of our overall World University Rankings. The Academic Survey measures which universities are regarded as top for scholarship and research by informed colleagues around the world. Our Employer Survey simply asks where recruiters find the best graduates. We place a higher weight on the opinion of employers who hire graduates in specific disciplines than we do those who hire across the full range of subjects.

To these two measures we add a further two which reward the production of original knowledge. One asks how often papers in specific subjects in the scholarly literature are cited by other researchers around the world, a standard measure of research impact. The other is the H-Index, a measure of the breadth and depth of scholarly publishing.  If the University of Xanadu has published 19 papers on chemistry with at least 19 citations each, its H-Index for chemistry is 19.

Our findings confirm the overall world dominance of big, old universities in Europe and North America, but it also contains some surprises. Singapore has two top-10 institutions for Materials Science, confirming the success of Singapore’s heavy investment in this technology. And as in previous years, we find that Cape Town is a world top-10 university for Development Studies. It is one of five South African universities in the top 100 for this subject, and they are joined by institutions in Brazil, Colombia, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Mexico and Uganda.

Martin Ince
QS Advisory Board

Enago

QS announce new partnership with Enago

It has been well established that researchers whose first language is not English are at a considerable disadvantage in promoting their work. The likelihood of acceptance by a top international journal is reduced when submissions are poorly written and papers published in other languages tend to be less well-read than those in English.

A new service to be offered by QS and Enago, the leading provider of authorship services for the global research community, will offer a solution. Improved success rates should benefit individual researchers and universities, who will feel the benefit of increased citation counts in rankings.

Since 2005, Enago has worked with more than 100,000 researchers in at least 125 countries, improving the communication of their research and helping them to achieve success in international publications. The company has offices in Tokyo, Seoul, Beijing, Shanghai, Istanbul, and New York, and operates globally, with regional teams supporting researchers locally.

Under this collaboration, authors worldwide can access Enago’s range of pre-submission editing services. Three levels of collaboration are available, ranging from straightforward language checking to copy-editing and more substantive review.

Papers submitted for the copy-editing service will be returned free from language errors and suitable for publication in SCI indexed journals. The premium editing service is tailored to high-impact, peer-reviewed international journals, focusing on the logic, structure and presentation of manuscripts as well as all aspects of copy editing.

Jason Newman, Global Commercial Director of the QS Intelligence Unit, said: “QS has always advised higher education institutions to improve their international research output as part of overall internationalization and we are pleased to now offer comprehensive support by partnering with Enago. We encourage the importance of publishing cutting-edge research and opinions from across the globe, and are happy that we are now able to increase our support for our partner universities.”

Rajiv Shirke, Vice President for Global Operations at Enago, said: “Enago is delighted to be collaborating with a forward-thinking organization like QS to improve universities’ research output. Having easy access to the manuscript preparation services provided by Enago will not only accelerate the process of publishing high-impact research but also ensure that specific author needs are taken care of during the editorial process.”

Full details are available at https://www.enago.com/qs/

 

 

 

How is data transforming higher education?

Two major events to be organized by QS in the next few months extend the company’s higher education activities beyond rankings.

The first is the new edition of the highly successful EduData Summit, which attracted speakers and delegates from world-leading universities to London last year to discuss the ways in which big data could benefit teaching and research.

This year’s theme is How is Data Transforming Education?” The two-day event will begin on June 12 at London’s Congress Centre, with a separate rankings masterclass taking place on June 14. Places can be reserved at http://www.edudatasummit.com/home, where full details of the programme can be found.

Dr Sam Nielsen, Director of the Strategic Intelligence Unit at Queensland University of Technology, said the summit should be a priority for anyone wishing to learn from data innovators and strategic planners at leading universities. “QUT was proud to be the gold sponsor of the inaugural EduData Summit and is excited to participate in 2017,” he added.

Among the speakers will be Professor Max Lu, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Surrey, on the uses of strategic information for competitive advantage. Among the other sessions will be one in which representatives of Cornell, MIT, the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) and Yale discuss the uses of comparative data at leading US universities. There will also be speakers from the UK Higher Education International Unit, Australia’s Group of Eight, and the Russell Group.

Kevin Kelly, ‎Associate Director, Global Strategy & Initiatives, Emory University, in Atlanta, Georgia, said: “In only its first year, the EduData Summit was the perfect event to meet and network with like-minded university administrators who similarly care about using data as a catalyst for change and improvement at their universities.”

The second event, to be held at the Wharton Business School in December, celebrates advances in pedagogy and features a range of awards for innovative teaching around the world. The conference, now in its fourth year, was the first to introduce international awards for teaching in higher education, recognising the shortcomings of rankings in this area.

 Last year’s Reimagine Education conference attracted more than 400 delegates from over 40 countries.  About 240 were from universities, schools and other education providers, while the rest were from the growing educational technology industry.

QS is still accepting submissions for the Reimagine Education Awards, whether focused on specific subjects, originating from different regions across the world, or examining educational styles ranging from all-digital to face-to-face. Those keen to examine the fundamental educational transformations taking place across the world are invited to book their place at the conference itself, which will take place from December 3 to 5. Full information on the conference and the awards can be found at http://www.reimagine-education.com

 

Madam Liu Yan Dong, Vice Premier of China, is one of the most influential female political leader in China and in the world

China Vice Premier Endorsed QS work in Major speech Highlighting 5 Years Plan for Chinese Universities

 

On 8th January 2016, during an important speech in the State Council of China, highlighting China’s 13th Five-Year Plan on education(2016-2010) for nearly 3000 Chinese universities, Madam Liu Yandong quoted the latest QS World University Ranking results to demonstrated the international competitiveness of top Chinese universities have already been recognised globally. This makes QS the only world university ranking being endorsed by the top Chinese government leader.

A graduate of Tsinghua University, Liu’s career has long been associated with Hu JinTao, China’s President 2003-2013, who she has been working closely with in the Communist Youth League colleague. In 2013, she was appointed Vice Premier, second in rank, with responsibility to oversee the portfolios of health, education, and sports. Liu is the fifth-ever female Politburo member since the foundation of the PRC in 1949. Since the appointment, Madam Liu is not only the most powerful woman in the Chinese government, but also one of the most powerful in the world.

Based on the 13th Five-Year Plan of China on Education: China aims to build a group of top Chinese universities with world-class quality and reputation by 2020.

In order to achieve this ambitious goal, more than 110 “high-level” universities will be established across China in the next 5 years. Some 11 provincial regions have also come up with financial support measures, with the total amount raised close to 40 billion RMB. Shandong province said it would raise up to 5 billion RMB, while Hubei province pledged an annual investment of 1 to 2 billion RMB.

Key tasks requires to achieve those goals include focuses on student quality, innovation, international cooperation, teaching quality and so on.

The 13th Five-Year Plan of China also gives details on the students number they want to reach. For example, in 2015, the number of students receiving higher education, nine-year compulsory education, and preschool education reached 36.5 million, 140 million, and 42.7 million respectively. The Chinese government aim to increase those numbers to 38.5 million, 150 million, and 45 million by 2020. A special focus has been put on the recruitment of top international students outside China.

In the speech of Madam Liu, which is published by the official website of China’s State Council, she said: “The international reputation of China’s education has been growing from strength to strength. Some of the academic disciplines in China have already reached leading positions internationally. This has helped to gain invaluable experience for Chinese universities to developed themselves into top world-class universities with Chinese characteristics. The overall world university ranking of Chinese universities have been rising in recent years, with remarkable progress in academic papers published and international reputations. In 2015, there are 25 Chinese university in mainland China that has been included in the UK’s QS World University Ranking Top 500. ”

This major speech took place at a critical and important time for the Chinese education sector. Firstly, all the Chinese universities just finished its 12th Five Year Plan(2010-2015) and is about to start implement its next 5 year plan. Secondly, the Chinese government have not revealed details on how to allocate the next round of government funding to support all Chinese universities to implement their next 13th Five-Years Plan. Thirdly, the State Council of China aim to build more and more universities and majors which are rated as “world-class” by 2020. However, the Chinese government in the past has not made it clear which university rating systems they would adopt to evaluate the performance of Chinese Universities’ global standing. The Vice Premier’s speech quoting QS ranking to applaud the improvements of Chinese universities are strong recommendation for QS rankings to become one of the major benchmarks to guide China’s next around of education reform.

Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit, said “I am completely overwhelmed by this fantastic news. China is one of the most difficult and complicated markets in the world. It is a tremendous privilege and surprise to get endorsement from China Vice Premier for our work 2 years after I joined QS. I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone in my amazing dream team in QSIU and QS, without your amazing support, unswerving trust, and invaluable advice since day one I joined, this would never have been possible. Next step, let us continue working closely together to help 3000 Chinese universities of 37 million students to reach their true potentially in the next 5 years!”

(Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit, speaking at a University Presidents’ Forum in China recently on the future directions for universities presidents to collaborate efficiently across borders, with top universities presidents from the UK, USA, Mexico, Thailand, Belgium, Russia and Cambodia)

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Rate Your Student City!

There are many different factors feeding into students’ university experience but one undeniable, universal and significant factor is the location of the university itself. More specifically, it is the city that the university is located in or next to. This is especially true for city-based universities that are not able to create the campus ‘bubble’.

Through our research with current and prospective students across the globe, they tell us time and time again that the location of their future institution is really important to them. It brings with it the environment, personal and professional opportunities, local culture and much more. In fact, for many, cultural interest and lifestyle associated with the location of the university is the number one reason they select that university.

As can be seen from the chart below, intentional students from all over the world mentioned location (highlighted in green) in their top five priorities when selecting an institution for a master’s degree:

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New Generation of University Applicants Strive to Become Global Citizens

New research carried out by QS with students worldwide explains the growing importance of international study. Although students in different regions have different motivations for studying abroad, they all agree on one aspect – developing global communication skills is key.

Benefits on studying internaitonally

It’s perhaps unsurprising that students from developing parts of the world are keen to learn from abroad, graduate from a reputable university and get work experience overseas. However, this is no longer just the pursuit of those from Asia, Latin America and Africa. Students in Europe and the US are equally interested in broadening horizons, becoming part of diverse communities and learning from other cultures. This could be a direct impact of globalisation, given the way businesses are becoming more connected and international, in turn increasing the demand for globally-minded graduates.

Our research, based on ~60 focus groups and over 1,800 survey responses, finds students commonly cite the following three factors when comparing universities abroad:

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Meet David Reggio, the new face of QS Consulting

Dr. David Reggio has returned to the QS Intelligence Unit, as the new Global Head of Consulting. With a real focus on innovation and relevance to the market, he explains how this service can help your institution: 

D.R.: In a nutshell, QS Consulting offers concrete solutions and insight for HE institutions and related organisations. Each project has a range of stakeholders and we go beyond providing intelligence reports: we conduct a tailored and thorough diagnosis.  Higher education institutions seeking to enhance their strategy and/or improve implementation can benefit from our personalised, bespoke services.

  • Who are the consultants?

D.R.:. There are three leads in the team, including myself. Dr. Shadi Hijazi is the man for marketing and change management, while Jacques de Champchesnel has worked in HE institutions on recruitment strategy and campus development. Between us, we have effected change and gained experience in Latin America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.  We also have a network of specialists and experts, so, for example, if there is an assignment for which an area of nano-medicine or irradiation is a strategic driver, then we have necessary recourse to the professional in that field for their participation and input. What’s more, consulting is housed in the QS Intelligence Unit, so we have access to tremendous insight, skills-sets, and, of course, data.  We are defined by strong dexterity and fluency not just with higher education per se, but with the horizon of science, technology and society. Read more