Higher Education Quick Takes

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Monday, April 20, 2015 - 3:00am

The University of Hong Kong has announced plans to require all students to spend time studying in mainland China and also in another country, The South China Morning Post reported. Details of the requirement and any exemptions are still being worked out. Generally, there is strong support for the idea that students should study abroad. But some are concerned about the impact on students who for various reasons (such as past participation in protests) are unable to or do not want to study in mainland China.


Monday, April 20, 2015 - 3:00am

In today's Academic Minute, Sandee McClowry, professor of counseling psychology at New York University, shows the impact of adapting to students’ needs and playing on their strengths. Learn more about the Academic Minute here.

Friday, April 17, 2015 - 3:00am

Social science groups are speaking out against a Republican-proposed bill to reauthorize the National Science Foundation that would keep total NSF funding relatively flat but impose deep cuts on the division that supports social science research. An analysis by the Consortium of Social Science Associations notes that most NSF divisions would see their authorization levels go up, but that the social science division would have its authorization level cut by more than 45 percent. Many Republicans in Congress have criticized federal support for the social sciences.


Friday, April 17, 2015 - 4:29am

An Inside Higher Ed article in January looked at how some law schools are admitting applicants with much lower Law School Admission Test scores than would have been admitted in the past. A new article from Bloomberg looks at the top of the LSAT range. It finds that as of March 2015, the number of law school applicants who have scores of 165 or higher (on a 120 to 180 scale) is about half of what it was in 2010.


Friday, April 17, 2015 - 4:27am

More than 500 people rallied at Colby College Thursday to protest recent racist comments on the social media service Yik Yak. Earlier in the week, a small group of Colby students held a protest against police violence against unarmed black people. The Yik Yak comments followed, mocking the protest and many going further into making bigoted comments about the protest and black people. Colby President David A. Greene told the gathering Thursday: “Those who raise their voices in support of social justice deserve our gratitude and our attention. Those who promote bigotry and targeted hatred have no place at Colby.”

Friday, April 17, 2015 - 3:00am

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Online Education Policy Initiative, an offshoot of a recent task force on the institute's future, officially launched on Thursday. The initiative, which is funded by a grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, will over the next nine months release reports, host workshops and lecture series, and eventually make recommendations about online learning. Sanjay E. Sarma, director of digital learning, and Karen Willcox, professor of aeronautics and astronautics in the aerospace, will lead the initiative.

Friday, April 17, 2015 - 3:00am

A new federal report presents a wealth of data about how 2002's 10th graders fared in higher education (and not) a decade later -- potentially offering researchers and policy makers enormous insight into who attains postsecondary success and why.

The report offers a first look at new data from one of the U.S. Education Department's most important longitudinal research studies, the Educational Longitudinal Study of 2002, which followed 10th graders through to the 2012-13 academic year. Eighty-four percent of those high school sophomores went on to at least some postsecondary education within that decade, while 16 percent did not, with those variations differing, somewhat predictably, for certain demographic traits (women were more likely to go on than men, students from wealthier socioeconomic backgrounds were more likely than their peers, etc.).

For those who went on to postsecondary education, the study examines what they attained (how many credits earned, whether they earned a credential and, if so, what kind), when and in what kind of institution they enrolled (13 percent of students attended a two-year institution first and then a four-year college, and 12 percent did the reverse), how they performed in terms of grade point average and other outcomes, and how many times they stopped their studies.

The report also includes data on the proportion of undergraduate credits that students actually earned versus those they attempted, and provides a slew of information on the characteristics of students who took at least one remedial course.

Friday, April 17, 2015 - 3:00am

Student groups have been pushing the University of Texas at Austin to remove a statue of Jefferson Davis from the campus. On Wednesday night or early Thursday morning, someone (or more than one person) vandalized the statue of the Confederate leader, writing "Davis Must Fall."

Friday, April 17, 2015 - 3:00am

Catholic University of America has eliminated 37 positions through buyouts and layoffs, The Washington Post reported. The university is trying to cut costs in the wake of declining enrollment in its law school and architecture school.


Friday, April 17, 2015 - 3:00am

In today's Academic Minute, Stephen Barnard, a sociologist at St. Lawrence University, discusses the way journalists use social media. Learn more about the Academic Minute here.



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