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Posts Tagged ‘Universities’

Tsinghua University may soon top the world league in science research

Posted by hkarner - 17. November 2018

Date: 15-11-2018
Source: The Economist

In China, its rapid rise is not unique

Tsinghua university was born out of national humiliation. It was founded in the aftermath of the Boxer Rebellion—an anti-foreign uprising in 1900—and paid for with the reparations exacted from China by America. Now Tsinghua is a major source of Chinese pride as it contends for accolades for research in science, technology, engineering and maths (stem). In 2013-16 it produced more of the top 1% most highly cited papers in maths and computing, and more of the 10% most highly cited papers in stem, than any other university in the world, reckons Simon Marginson of Oxford University (see chart). The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (mit) still leads in the top 1% of stem papers, but Mr Marginson says Tsinghua is on track to be “number one in five years or less”. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Why universities for the elderly are booming in China

Posted by hkarner - 20. August 2018

Date: 17-08-2018
Source: The Economist

Both Confucius and Mao would approve

SEVERAL times a year, groups of silver-haired Chinese people camp out overnight. They do so in order to get prime spots to register for places at the country’s universities for the elderly. Since 1983, when China’s first such school opened, 70,000 more have cropped up across the country. They offer courses in pursuits like dancing, online shopping or English for would-be-travellers, as well as in more traditional academic disciplines. Last year these universities enrolled a combined 8m students—just over 3% of China’s cohort of over-60s. At the Shanghai University for the Elderly, the average age of students is 65-70

The idea of a university for the elderly is not new. The University of the Third Age movement, named for the final third of life, began in France in 1973. It then spread across Europe and became especially popular in Britain. China’s first elderly universities were aimed at veteran Communist Party cadres. Today some of the schools are reserved for retired civil servants, but others are open to all. Most are government-funded; the average cost of fees is 200 yuan ($31) per term. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Exceptionalism of American Higher Education

Posted by hkarner - 21. Mai 2018

David F. Labaree

David F. Labaree is Professor of Education at Stanford University, and the author of A Perfect Mess: The Unlikely Ascendancy of American Higher Education.

Every major performance indicator has America’s universities leading the world. Unfortunately for those who seek to emulate the US system, the American model reflects unique historical, political, and financial factors.

STANFORD – In the second half of the twentieth century, American universities and colleges emerged as dominant players in the global ecology of higher education, a dominance that continues to this day. In terms of the number of Nobel laureates produced, eight of the world’s top ten universities are in the United States. Forty-two of the world’s 50 largest university endowments are in America. And, when ranked by research output, 15 of the top 20 institutions are based in the US.

Given these metrics, few can dispute that the American model of higher education is the world’s most successful. The question is why, and whether the US approach can be exported.2 Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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How global university rankings are changing higher education

Posted by hkarner - 20. Mai 2018

Date: 17-05-2018
Source: The Economist

They favour research over teaching and the sciences over the arts

EARLIER this month Peking University played host to perhaps the grandest global gathering ever of the higher-education business. Senior figures from the world’s most famous universities—Harvard and Yale, Oxford and Cambridge among them—enjoyed or endured a two-hour opening ceremony followed by a packed programme of mandatory cultural events interspersed with speeches lauding “Xi Jinping thought”. The party was thrown to celebrate Peking University’s 120th birthday—and, less explicitly, China’s success in a race that started 20 years ago.

In May 1998 Jiang Zemin, China’s president at the time, announced Project 985, named for the year and the month. Its purpose was to create world-class universities. Nian Cai Liu, a professor of polymeric materials science and engineering at Shanghai Jiao Tong University, got swept up in this initiative. “I asked myself many questions, including: what is the definition of and criteria for a world-class university? What are the positions of top Chinese universities?” Once he started benchmarking them against foreign ones, he found that “governments, universities and stakeholders from all around the world” were interested. So, in 2003, he produced the first ranking of 500 leading global institutions. Nobody, least of all the modest Professor Liu, expected the Shanghai rankings to be so popular. “Indeed, it was a real surprise.” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Wann kommt der technologiebedingte Umbruch in der höheren Bildung?

Posted by hkarner - 6. Februar 2018

Kenneth Rogoff, Professor of Economics and Public Policy at Harvard University and recipient of the 2011 Deutsche Bank Prize in Financial Economics, was the chief economist of the International Monetary Fund from 2001 to 2003. The co-author of This Time is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly, his new book, The Curse of Cash, was released in August 2016.

CAMBRIDGE – Zu Beginn des Internet-Zeitalters in den frühen 1990er Jahren schien eine Explosion akademischer Produktivität in Reichweite. Doch es kam nichts. Stattdessen entwickeln sich die Lehrmethoden an Hochschulen und Universitäten – wo man sich rühmt, massenhaft kreative Ideen zur Modernisierung der Gesellschaft hervorzubringen – weiterhin im Schneckentempo.

Freilich haben PowerPoint-Präsentationen die Wandtafel abgelöst, „offene Online-Vorlesungen” verzeichnen oftmals mehr als 100.000 Anmeldungen (obwohl die Zahl der wirklich engagierten Studierenden tendenziell weit geringer ist) und in so genannten „Flipped Classrooms“ treten aufgezeichnete Unterrichtseinheiten an die Stelle von Hausaufgaben, während die Zeit im Klassenzimmer mit der Diskussion dieser Hausaufgaben verbracht wird. Doch angesichts der zentralen Rolle der Bildung bei der Steigerung der Produktivität stellt sich die Frage, ob sich die Bemühungen zur Wiederbelebung der sklerotischen westlichen Ökonomien nicht auf die Neuerfindung der höheren Bildung konzentrieren sollten.

Man kann verstehen, warum sich der Wandel in der Grund- und Sekundarstufe, wo man mit massiven sozialen und politischen Hindernissen zu kämpfen hat, so langsam vollzieht. Aber Hochschulen und Universitäten verfügen über viel umfangreichere Möglichkeiten für Experimente; tatsächlich ist das in vielerlei Hinsicht ihr Daseinszweck. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Universities in the Age of AI

Posted by hkarner - 4. Februar 2018

Andrew Wachtel

Andrew Wachtel is President of the American University of Central Asia.

Over the next 50 years or so, as AI and machine learning become more powerful, human labor will be cannibalized by technologies that outperform people in nearly every job function. How should higher education prepare students for this eventuality?

BISHKEK – I was recently offered the presidency of a university in Kazakhstan that focuses primarily on business, economics, and law, and that teaches these subjects in a narrow, albeit intellectually rigorous, way. I am considering the job, but I have a few conditions.

What I have proposed is to transform the university into an institution where students continue to concentrate in these three disciplines, but must also complete a rigorous “core curriculum” in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences – including computer science and statistics. Students would also need to choose a minor in one of the humanities or social sciences.

There are many reasons for insisting on this transformation, but the most compelling one, from my perspective, is the need to prepare future graduates for a world in which artificial intelligence and AI-assisted technology plays an increasingly dominant role. To succeed in the workplace of tomorrow, students will need new skills. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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„Universitäten sind Mittelmaß mit deutlicher Tendenz nach unten“

Posted by hkarner - 20. September 2017

InterviewAndreas Schnauder, 19. September 2017, 17:47 derstandard.at

Österreich muss sein Bildungs- und Forschungssystem reformieren, sagt Thomas Wieser, höchster Beamter der Eurogruppe

Seit 2012 steht ein Österreicher an der Spitze der Euroarbeitsgruppe, die alle wichtigen Entscheidungen der Währungsunion vorbereitet. Thomas Wieser bemängelt im Interview mit dem STANDARD, dass Österreich für die Bewältigung von Globalisierung und Digitalisierung nicht gut gerüstet sei. Vor allem bei Bildung und Forschung seien die Ergebnisse mäßig. Der Befund sei zwar seit 20 Jahren bekannt, Reformen allerdings schwer auszumachen. Auch mit der Bürokratie geht Wieser hart ins Gericht. Die oft geforderte Vertiefung der Eurozone erwartet der Spitzenbeamte auf absehbare Zeit nicht.

STANDARD: Mit der Konjunktur geht’s in Europa stark aufwärts, das hilft bei der Konsolidierung der angespannten Staatshaushalte. Bewegen sich die Defizite ausreichend nach unten, oder werden strukturelle Probleme überdeckt?

Wieser: Der Hauptbeitrag zur Budgetkonsolidierung in den letzten Jahren waren die extremen Niedrigzinsen und die damit verbundene billige Refinanzierung der Haushalte. Wenn man sich den Primärhaushalt, der die Defizite um die Zinszahlungen bereinigt, ansieht, ergeben sich nur relativ geringe Konsolidierungseffekte. Das Problem ist, dass im Wesentlichen jene Staaten, die aufgrund ihrer Verschuldung viel mehr Gewicht auf die Budgetkonsolidierung legen müssten, es zu wenig tun. Die, die mehr für die Konjunkturbelebung tun könnten, machen das auch nur eingeschränkt. Der Policy-Mix in der Eurozone ist im Aggregat richtig, in der Zusammensetzung aber nicht. Im Klartext müssten die Italiener, Franzosen und Spanier deutlich mehr für die Budgetkonsolidierung tun, während Staaten wie Deutschland ein höheres Defizit anstatt der schwarzen Null anstreben sollten. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Public Spheres for the Trump Age

Posted by hkarner - 5. Juli 2017

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Universities and Brexit: A first-class mess

Posted by hkarner - 23. Juli 2016

Date: 21-07-2016
Source: The Economist

Academics fear a drying up of students, and money

Brexit leaves britain nakedMOST economists were against the idea of Britain leaving the European Union. But perhaps few felt so strongly about it as the economics lecturer at Cambridge University who, following the referendum on June 23rd, turned up to a faculty meeting unclothed with “Brexit leaves Britain naked” daubed across her torso. Although the form of protest was unusual, the feeling it expressed was not: in a poll conducted prior to the vote by Times Higher Education, a trade paper, nine in ten university staff said they would vote to Remain. At University College London (UCL), where one in ten students comes from the EU, the mood after the result was one of “deep shock, grief and then concern,” says Michael Arthur, the university’s president.

British universities are home to students from all corners: Europeans make up 6% of the total; another 14% come from the rest of the world. As a result of EU rules, the former are treated like home students, meaning that in England their fees are capped at £9,000 ($11,900) a year and they have access to state-provided loans. By contrast, there are no limits on fees for students from the rest of the world. A geography degree at Oxford, as taken by Theresa May, costs non-EU students £22,430 a year.

Jo Johnson, the universities minister, has confirmed that students from the EU starting their courses in September will continue to have access to government loans and capped fees. If, as expected, that remains true in 2017-18, there may even be a surge in the number of EU applicants as potential students rush to take advantage of the support while they still can, says Emran Mian, director of the Social Market Foundation, a think-tank. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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China opens a new university every week

Posted by hkarner - 17. März 2016

Date: 16-03-2016
Source: BBC

China has outstripped the US and Europe in graduate numbers and the gap is growing wider

China has been building the equivalent of almost one university per week.

It is part of a silent revolution that is causing a huge shift in the composition of the world’s population of graduates.

For decades, the United States had the highest proportion of people going to university. They dominated the graduate market.

Reflecting this former supremacy, among 55 to 64 year olds almost a third of all graduates in the world’s major economies are US citizens.

But that is changing rapidly among younger generations. In terms of producing graduates, China has overtaken the United States and the combined university systems of European Union countries. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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