HE News Brief 1.9.10

by Abby Chau

Here are this week’s news stories:

  • University rankings hits its zenith in autumn, with different league tables pronouncing their take on a world-class university. The Chronicle of Higher Education has devised a nifty chart to compare Rankings and sheds a bit of light on which indicators are predominantly used, and which ones are ignored.
    Full Story: Chronicle of Higher Education

  • In a shocking directive, the Ethiopian Ministry of Education decreed that there is to be a ban on distance learning programmes across the country.  Stating that distance learning is unnecessary at this point in the country’s higher educational development, the Ministry also said that quality assurance is a major priority. This will have a drastic effect on the estimated 64 private institutions in the country, as well as vocational education. Critics argue that this directive goes too far and does not offer solutions to the current problems facing higher education.  Others are worried about the impact on current students – St Mary’s University College for example currently enrolls 75% of its students in distance learning courses.
    Full Story: Addis Fortune
  • A pact between China and India, which is a reciprocal recognition of degrees, is due to be signed soon. An estimated 7,000 Indian students are studying in China. In another announcement, China also announced plans to increase foreign student enrolment  to 10% by 2020. In what many perceive to be a move on China’s part to enhance its influence abroad, figures show that 52,000 foreign students studied in China in 2000 and in 2009, this figure jumped to 240,000 foreign students. It was also revealed recently that China has overtaken Japan as the world’s second largest economy.
    Full Story: Hindustan Times
    More: The Hindu
  • There has been rumbles recently that Dubai must do more to regulate the estimated 50 foreign universities who operate in free zones, which are exempt from federal control. According to this report, all four free zones are regulated by different authorities which makes local degree recognition a challenge.  In addition, in the United Arab Emirates, there is no single regulatory system to assess higher education, rather there is the University Quality Assurance International Board (UQAIB) and the Commission for Academic Accreditation (CAA). Critics say that a single regulatory body is essential to eliminate red tape.
    Full Story: The National

  • The Kenyan government has announced that 592 technical and vocational education training institutes risk closure if they do not comply with registration requirements in 21 days. Higher Education Minister William Ruto said that “unscrupulous businessmen” are establishing colleges that are suspect and that enforcement is essential to ensure that they are legitimate. Kenya has established ambitious goals for developing a middle-income economy in their Vision 2030 initiative.
    Full Story: Capital News

  • The Korean Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology has announced that it will name the country’s 50 poor quality universities in order to cap their student loan credit. Measuring employment rate, financial stability, curriculum and number of full-time staff and students, the Ministry hopes to improve the quality of education by rating universities using a simple A,B,C classification system. The amount a university can borrow from the student loan service program is tied directly to how they perform within these classifications.
    Full Story: JoongAng Daily

  • Mexico’s under-secretary for Higher Education Rodolfo Tuiran revealed to the Chronicle that it is their goal to increase the gross enrollment rate by as much as 36% by 2030. Stating that education is the key to fix society’s ails and to reduce violence,  Tuiran says that the rigidity of the current HE system, financial problems, and the lack of a single integrated HE system are the three main problems facing the Mexican HE at the moment.
    Full Story: The Chronicle of Higher Education
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