Higher Education Quick Takes

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Wednesday, October 5, 2011 - 3:00am

Daniel Shechtman was this morning named winner of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work discovering quasicrystals -- research in which Shechtman has "to fight a fierce battle against established science," according to the Nobel announcement. Shechtman is Philip Tobias Professor of Materials Science at Technion -- Israel Institute of Technology.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 - 3:00am

The winner or winners of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics will be announced this morning. This item will be updated as soon as information is available.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 - 3:00am

Three researchers will share the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics for "the discovery of the accelerating expansion of the Universe through observations of distant supernovae." The three are:

  • Saul Perlmutter, head of the Supernova Cosmology Project and professor of astrophysics at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California at Berkeley.
  • Brian P. Schmidt, head of the High-z Supernova Search Team and distinguished professor at the Australian National University.
  • Adam G. Riess, professor of astronomy and physics at Johns Hopkins University.
Tuesday, October 4, 2011 - 3:00am

Suffolk University is going through an extensive transition following the resignation last year of President David Sargent, who was criticized for being one of the country's most highly paid college presidents. The Boston Globe reported that the university is expected to appoint 12 new members to its board of trustees today, with more trustee changes possible ahead. In addition, the jobs of several top administrators have been eliminated. Some trustees who were close to Sargent are among those leaving the board.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 - 3:00am

McGill University cancer researchers have come up with an unusual way to raise money -- by dancing on YouTube. The video is attracting considerable attention in Canada and elsewhere, and university officials hope that gifts will follow.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 - 3:00am

Leaders of the Madison Area Technical College Part-Time Teachers' Union are floating an unusual idea to transform the union in the wake of Wisconsin's law largely barring or limiting the rights of most public sector unions, Madison.com reported. Under the idea being discussed (and not picking up widespread support to date), the union would be replaced by a private corporation that would sign a contract with the college to provide instructors and fill various other roles.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 - 3:00am

In today’s Academic Minute, Michelle Bower of Landmark College explains how a teacher’s perception of a student's math ability can negatively influence actual ability. Find out more about the Academic Minute here.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 - 3:00am

The practice at elite M.B.A. programs of not reporting student grades is popular but may not be achieving its stated goals, according to a new study by the National Bureau of Economic Research. The theory, believed by many students, is that the policy of keeping grades secret encourages students to take risks in their educations, and to take challenging courses. But at several of the business schools with the policy, reports suggest high levels of apathy and little evidence of the intellectual risk-taking proponents cite, the study found.

Monday, October 3, 2011 - 3:00am

The 2011 winner of the Nobel Prize in Medicine will be announced this morning. This item will be updated as soon as information is available.

Monday, October 3, 2011 - 3:00am

The nation's education leaders must work to improve college completion rates for Latino students if it is to stay competitive on the world state, according to a report compiled by College Board. While Latinos make up the fastest growing group of students in the nation, they are behind the national average for college completion by nearly half. At present, 19.2 percent of Latinos complete college, while the national average hovers around 40 percent, according to the report. At a conference in Miami on Friday, College Board unveiled its report and action plan to improve educational attainment for Latinos.

Gaston Caperton, president of the College Board, said the report is a "call to action." “Our nation will not become number one again in college completion unless we commit ourselves to giving these students the support they need to achieve their full potential,” Caperton said.

The report is one step in ensuring College Board's goal of increasing completion of associate's degree or higher to 55 percent by 2025.

"There is work to be done to ensure every student, regardless of background, zip code or parents’ salary level, is equipped with the knowledge and skills to succeed in today’s global economy," said Jeb Bush, former governor of Florida and chairman of the Foundation of Excellence in Education.

To attain better completion rates for Latino students, the report recommends voluntary preschool education that is available to low-income students, improving middle and high school counseling and simplifying the financial aid system, among other things.

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