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Articles on Universities

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MOOC graduates would throw their laptops in the air instead. Chris Ison/PA

MOOCs or campus? In the future, you choose

A napster moment; the end of boring lectures; a tipping point. These are all common responses to the emergence of MOOCs – Massive Open Online Courses. Now, simply using a laptop or iPad, hundreds of thousands…
Universities Australia Chair Sandra Harding looks at the future of universities. University image from www.shutterstock.com

National Press Club address: Sandra Harding on the future of universities

Professor Sandra Harding, the Universities Australia chair and Vice-Chancellor of James Cook University addressed the National Press Club in Canberra today. Here is a copy of her speech. In his novel set…
The recent cuts to universities are only likely to make the health problem growing in the academic community worse. Stressed academic image www.shutterstock.com

Uni cuts will lead to health problems for academics

The consensus on the recent A$2.3 billion funding cuts to the tertiary sector is they will do more harm than good. Plenty of commentators foresee diminishing quality of teaching and research, possible…
There’s renewed debate around whether universities need to specialise in research or teaching. University image from www.shutterstock.com

Research and teaching – what do we actually want Australian universities to do?

“We must give universities more freedom to focus on what they are good at… If that means that some universities want to focus significantly more on teaching, then they should confidently do so… Government…
The institution you come from shouldn’t be the main factor in research funding allocation. Evaluation image from www.shutterstock.com

The best and rest: why we should fund ‘average’ research

Increasingly, it’s not the quality of the research or researcher that is determining who gets funding in Australia’s universities but the reputation of the institutions they work for. This is now reflected…
A university event where women and men were asked to sit separately raises more questions. Islamic women image from www.shutterstock.com

The real story behind Melbourne University’s gender segregation case

The fallout from an event at the University of Melbourne where women and men were asked to sit separately has been intense. The media coverage so far has focused on the issue of segregated seating in a…
Three-quarters of Indians say cricket helps the relationship between India and Australia, a new survey has found. Flickr/Foxypar4

It’s not just cricket: Indians have their say on Australia

Australia should work harder on its official and unofficial diplomacy to strengthen its ties to India, after a new survey…
Another funding shake-up: the University of South Queensland and others are concerned about cuts to student funding and scholarships. USQ/Grace Yu

Students to pay the price for reduced university funding

Losing A$200 a student doesn’t sound like a major cut for a multi-billion-dollar industry - so will the new university funding…
Tertiary education minister Craig Emerson yesterday announced significant changes to higher education funding. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

Should universities suffer to pay for school funding?

Anyone believing new tertiary education minister Craig Emerson was just minding the higher education shop until the election has been proved wrong by this weekend’s announcement of funding cuts. About…
Vice Chancellor of Cambridge University, Sir Leszek Borysiewicz talks with one of our academic experts about the changing role of universities. Cambridge University

Leszek Borysiewicz and Lynn Meek In Conversation – full transcript

To listen to the conversation between Leszek Borysiewicz and Lynn Meek, please see the link below. An edited transcript is available here. Lynn Meek: Hello, I’m Professor Lynn Meek from the LH Martin Institute…
Universities do have a role to play in helping developing countries. University image from www.shutterstock.com

Universities and the poorest billion

The following is based on the Monash Richard Larkins Oration given by Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, Vice-Chancellor of Cambridge University last night in Melbourne. You can read and listen to our In…
There’s lots of “problems” to be fixed in education, but what does the evidence say? Teacher image from www.shutterstock.com

Millions wasted in education? That’s not what the evidence says

Over recent years we have seen a wave of angst about Australia’s school education. The complex issue of teacher quality is, of course, part of the equation, but state governments are also concerned that…
What should students really expect after doing a PhD? PhD image from www.shutterstock.com

Are PhD graduates expecting too much?

When it comes to PhD graduates, it’s clear that supply now far outstrips demand. It used to be that doing a PhD almost guaranteed you an academic position but now, any guarantees are long gone. My own…
Australian universities need to trim down their bureaucracies. University image from www.shutterstock.com

Reform Australian universities by cutting their bureaucracies

Universities drive a knowledge economy, generate new ideas and teach people how to think critically. Anything other than strong investment in them will likely harm Australia. But as Australian politicians…
New tests could be in store for trainee teachers to demonstrate their emotional intelligence. Emotions image from www.shutterstock.com

Do we need emotional intelligence tests for teachers?

With the newly announced federal government reforms to teacher training announced this week, emotional intelligence is now firmly on the agenda for trainee teachers. Under the proposed rules, prospective…
What is it that we’re trying to fix in teacher education? Teacher image from www.shutterstock.com

Teaching standards to fix a ‘crisis’ that doesn’t exist

The past week has been a tumultuous time for university education faculties. First the NSW government announced minimum entry requirements for teaching degrees, and then the federal government trumped…
The Coalition looks set to only tinker around the edges of higher education policy. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

Decoding Tony Abbott’s plans for universities

What should universities expect from a Coalition government if Tony Abbott wins the September election? In his address to the Universities Australia conference in Canberra, the signals were fairly reassuring…
In his new role as tertiary education minister Chris Bowen said enroling more disadvantaged students would not drag down quality. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

Equality or quality? Measuring the effect of more uni students

Quality in education is something that seems so obvious - until you try to define it. This week the new Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research Chris Bowen said that “the quality…
A PhD is never easy but is there a way to make it easier? Phd graduate image from www.shutterstock.com

A PhD by publication or how I got my doctorate and kept my sanity

Doing a PhD is a difficult business. Long hours, personal stress, institutional pressure to complete on time – and all this for what? Increasingly a PhD alone does not guarantee an academic career. We…
University textbooks are expensive for a reason. Textbook image from www.shuttestock.com

Required reading: here’s why textbooks are so expensive

Although student life at university is generally enjoyable, one aspect that blemishes the experience is the astronomical cost of textbooks. As many students head back to university this year, they can…

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