In the latest "This Week," Inside Higher Ed's free news podcast, AcademeBlog's John K. Wilson and the Teagle Foundation's Judith Shapiro, with Editor Scott Jaschik and moderator Casey Green, assessed the implications of the University of Illinois's decision not to hire Steven Salaita in the wake of his controversial public comments about the Israel-Palestinian conflict. And the College of Southern Nevada's Robert McKee joined the program to discuss his essay about the impact of age discrimination on faculty careers.
Higher Education Quick Takes
The University of Cambridge is seeking a Ph.D. student to focus on chocolate, the BBC reported. The degree will be offered through the chemical engineering and biotechnology program and will focus on such issues as preventing melting in warm regions.
Howard University students have responded with a photograph to the shooting death of Michael Brown, the unarmed black teenager who was shot and killed by police in Missouri. The students at Howard posed with their hands in the air, and saying "don't shoot me," as protesters in Missouri have done. The photo is now circulating on social media.
The five co-authors of a Miami Dade College communications department textbook are feuding over allegations of plagiarism -- including plagiarism of the textbook's definition of plagiarism, The Miami Herald reported. One communications professor at the college says her colleague lifted several passages from other sources. But a college investigation of the matter largely dismissed those charges, finding that more clarification was needed for certain passages and blaming some of the inadequate sourcing on changes the publisher made. The college's faculty union backs those findings. However, communications among the communications textbook co-authors have broken down, reports the newspaper, and the future of the book is in question.
Desire2Learn, the Waterloo, Ontario-based company behind the learning management system BrightSpace, on Thursday announced an $85 million financing haul. The company has already raised $80 million from a previous round. An unnamed "large institutional asset manager" led the round, according to a company press release.
York University, in Canada, has been removing leaflets from campus that have angered many students, CBC News reported. The material appears to come from an anti-immigrant group and features photographs of York in the 1960s, claiming that the university was "100 percent white" in that decade and that it may soon be majority minority.
Security concerns are preventing the start of the academic year at Tripoli University, The Libya Herald reported. The campus is open only for students with specific administrative needs, such as obtaining permission to study abroad.
Thomas M. Cooley Law School, the country's largest freestanding law school, will be henceforth known as Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School, although the two will remain separate organizations, they announced Wednesday. The boards of the public Western Michigan and the private nonprofit Cooley approved the arrangement last year, but accreditors -- the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools and the American Bar Association -- signed off on it only recently. The two institutions have collaborated on joint programs for a decade, but said the new alignment -- which will not include any exchange of funds at the start -- will allow for greater collaboration.
Like many law schools, Cooley has struggled with enrollments in recent years, and it announced some layoffs and other kinds of retrenchment last year. It has also been criticized for low placement rates, among other problems.