16 août 2013

Higher education in Europe

http://ec.europa.eu/education/news/images/image3170.jpgHigher education plays an essential role in society, creating new knowledge, transferring it to students and fostering innovation. EU-level actions help higher education institutions throughout Europe in their efforts to modernise, both in terms of the courses they offer and the way they operate.
Europe has around 4 000 higher education institutions, with over 19 million students and 1.5 million staff. Some European universities are among the best in the world, but, overall, potential is not being fully realised. Curricula are not always up to date, not enough young people go to university, and not enough adults have ever attended university. European universities often lack the management tools and funding to match their ambitions. In the light of these challenges, governments and higher education institutions are looking for ways to create better conditions for universities. National governments are responsible for their education and training systems and individual universities organise their own curricula. However, the challenges facing higher education are similar across the EU and there are clear advantages in working together. The role of the European Commission is to support national efforts. This is done in the following ways:

  • By working closely with policy-makers from Member States to help them develop their higher education policies. The Commission published a modernisation agenda for higher education in 2011, identifying five priority reform areas for action. Read more about the agenda.
  • The Commission actively supports the Bologna Process, the inter-governmental process which promotes reforms in higher education with 47 countries, leading to establishing a 'European Higher Education Area'.
  • By encouraging the exchange of examples of good policy practice between different countries – in particular, it gathers together a group of national experts – the 'cluster' on the modernisation of higher education – to share experiences and look at common challenges.
  • The Erasmus Programme funds around 200 000 students every year to study or work abroad, along with other projects to increase co-operation between higher education institutions and other relevant institutions.
  • The Commission launches studies on specific areas relevant to higher education policy by gathering, analysing and sharing information on the state of play across Europe. Find EU studies and research on higher education.

More information

Posté par pcassuto à 05:02 - - Permalien [#]
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Mobility and lifelong learning instruments

http://ec.europa.eu/education/news/images/image3170.jpgThere are several related initiatives to help make qualifications, experiences and skills better appreciated and easier to recognise throughout the EU. The aim is to give greater access to learning or employment opportunities in different countries and encourage greater mobility – for individuals, businesses and other organisations.

  • The Diploma Supplement (DS) accompanies a higher education diploma, providing a standardized description of the nature, level, context, content and status of the studies completed by its holder.
  • Europass helps people make their qualifications and skills better understood and recognised throughout Europe, increasing their employment prospects. Its web portal includes interactive tools that, for example, allow users to create a CV in a common European format.

Other tools are being developed for the validation of informal and non-formal learning. Read more about actions to help recognition of qualifications across the EU.

Posté par pcassuto à 05:00 - - Permalien [#]
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Strategic framework for education and training

http://ec.europa.eu/education/news/images/image3170.jpgPoliticians at the European level have recognised that education and training are essential to the development of today's knowledge society and economy. The EU's strategy emphasises countries working together and learning from each other.
EU education and training policies have gained impetus since the adoption of the Lisbon Strategy in 2000, the EU's overarching programme focusing on growth and jobs. The strategy recognised that knowledge, and the innovation it sparks, are the EU's most valuable assets, particularly in light of increasing global competition.
EU Member States and the European Commission strengthened co-operation in 2009 with strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training ("ET 2020")a follow-up to the earlier Education and Training 2010 work programme launched in 2001. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 04:59 - - Permalien [#]

University suspends visa sponsorship programme

http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/magazine/graphics/logo.pngBy . Home Office ‘looking into’ partnership between Glyndwr University and London School of Business and Finance. A university has suspended entry to a programme in which it sponsored overseas students so they could work in the UK while a private college provided teaching and collected tuition fees. It is understood that the Home Office has been looking into the partnership between Glyndwr University and the London School of Business and Finance, although there is no suggestion that any rules have been broken. The breakdown of the arrangement follows the end of a similar partnership that the LSBF had last year with London Metropolitan University. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 04:48 - - Permalien [#]

Academic Ranking of World Universities 2013 released

http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/magazine/graphics/logo.pngBy . Eastern institutions slow to make inroads into Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities table.
View the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. The long-heralded shift of global academic power towards Asia appears to be happening at a glacial pace, if at all, according to this year’s Shanghai Jiao Tong university rankings.
Both the US and the UK have one fewer institution in the top 500 this year, but there was a better performance by some North American and European countries and little evidence of more Asian representation in the Academic Ranking of World Universities 2013.
There are now no Asian universities in the top 20 after the University of Tokyo was displaced by the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich at number 20. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 04:44 - - Permalien [#]

EU, Israel begin talks over participation in Horizon 2020

http://www.jpost.com/images/jpost_logo1.pngBy Herb Keinon. Foreign Ministry official says Jerusalem won’t join program unless settlement guideline issues are resolved. If “positive understandings” with the EU regarding implementation of settlement guidelines cannot be reached, Israel will not join the Horizon 2020 R&D program, a Foreign Ministry official said on Wednesday at the opening of talks on the issue. At the beginning, in Tel Aviv, of the first EU-Israel meeting to discuss Israel’s participation in the lucrative project, Foreign Minister deputy director-general for economic affairs Irit Ben-Abba – who led the Israeli delegation at the talks – made it clear that Israel took a grave view of the new EU guidelines, which prohibit funding to Israel entities in east Jerusalem, the Golan Heights and the West Bank. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 04:40 - - Permalien [#]

MOOCs: A Disruptive Innovation or Not?

http://1.gravatar.com/avatar/d390e1ab60d9bbdfab03e099ed0ec8a7?s=60&d=http%3A%2F%2F1.gravatar.com%2Favatar%2Fad516503a11cd5ca435acc9bb6523536%3Fs%3D60&r=GBy . Nearly five years ago on October 27, 2008 Clayton Christensen and Michael Horn briefed participants at an American Enterprise Institute [AEI] meeting on “Disruptive Innovation in Education and Health Care.” Christensen and his work were well known by this Washington DC group. AEI described the meeting:

The ability of technology to “disrupt” long-established business practices–dramatically changing the landscape of industries by increasing access, cutting costs, and revolutionizing delivery–has been a subject discussed for decades and is the topic of Harvard Business School professor Clayton M. Christensen’s iconic volumes, The Innovator’s Dilemma and The Innovator’s Solution. Yet, as Christensen has observed, these radical, innovation-driven transformations have been largely absent in the education and health industries–perhaps the two most important arenas of everyday life.

At that time of the AEI briefing, Christensen and Horn’s book Disrupting Class had just been published. Subsequently, their work has been interpreted by some in the press as resolving the problems of students’ access to (in both a physical and economic sense), and success in, higher education. Christensen and Horn’s presentations and the discussion focused on “online learning”. It should be noted that data from MOOCs [Massive Open Online Courses] would not be available for three more years. Both presentations were far more nuanced than reported. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 04:37 - - Permalien [#]

Some thoughts about MOOCs

By Graham Attwell. I’ve avoided writing  much about MOOCs lately. Not because I am not interested or because I don’ think MOOCs are important, but mainly because I have been overwhelmed by the deluge of announcements and developments, blog posts, studies and lets face it, just hype. Some couple of weeks ago, I was invited to join a partnership for a tender application to the EU about MOOCs for web developers. So I have spent soem time looking rather more intensively at the literature and trying to make some sense of it. Here are a few observations. Firstly are MOOCs really disrupting universities. I guess the answer is yes and no. The great majority of MOOCs are free, and despite emergent business models around for example, selling e books or charging for accreditation, there remains question marks over the business models for MOOCs. Of course if the purpose and structure of universities is to provide free and open higher education then this wouldn’t be so important. But in an era where university funding in many countries is increasingly reliant on fees, this does become a major issue. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 04:35 - - Permalien [#]

Continuing vocational training -Two thirds of enterprises in the EU27 provided vocational training in 2010

http://ec.europa.eu/education/news/images/image3170.jpgContinuing vocational training -Two thirds of enterprises in the EU27 provided vocational training in 2010 - Ranged from 23% in Poland to 87% in Austria and Sweden.
In the EU27, two thirds (66%) of all enterprises with ten or more employees provided vocational training to their staff in 2010, compared with 60% in 2005.
The highest proportions of enterprises providing training were observed in Austria and Sweden (both 87%) the United Kingdom (80%), the Netherlands (79%), Belgium (78%) and France (76%), and the lowest in Poland (23%), Romania (24%), Bulgaria (31%), Latvia (40%) and Hungary (49%).
These data, published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, come from the Continuing Vocational Training Survey (CVTS), which is carried out every five years. The news release presents data from the fourth and latest survey, referring to the year 2010, which covered the 27 Member States and Croatia.
To know more
Continuing vocational training statistics.

Posté par pcassuto à 03:57 - - Permalien [#]
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EU high level group: train the professors to teach

http://ec.europa.eu/education/news/images/image3170.jpgThe EU high-level group on modernisation of higher education publishes its first report today on improving the quality of teaching and learning in universities.
The group, chaired by former President of Ireland Mary McAleese, makes 16 recommendations which include a call for mandatory certified training for professors and other higher education teaching staff, more focus on helping students to develop entrepreneurial and innovative skills, and the creation of a European Academy of Teaching and Learning.
Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, said: "My goal in setting up the group was to encourage new thinking and ideas. Its recommendations are timely, practical and do not necessarily require large amounts of additional expenditure. Quality teaching in our higher education and training systems is crucial for ensuring that students are equipped with the right blend of skills for their future personal and professional development. The Commission will do all it can to support the implementation of these recommendations."
Mary McAleese, chair of the group, added: "Quality teaching and learning depends on dedicated individuals and dedicated institutions, supported by policies that put teaching and learning at the centre. Higher education teaching staff have to be given the training and support they need to do an excellent job. Our report shows how this can be done."
The group, which was set up by Commission Vassiliou last September, has consulted widely with stakeholders as part of its work. It found that many higher education institutes place insufficient emphasis on teaching in comparison with research, even though both are core missions of higher education. "This needs rebalancing. The role of teaching in defining academic merit needs a stronger emphasis and recognition, especially in career terms," said the Commissioner. "I very much welcome the proposal that all teachers in higher education should be taught how to teach."
Next steps
The high level group will now begin work on the second part of its mission, focused on how to maximise the impact of new methods of delivering quality higher education, such as massive open online courses ('MOOCs'), which enable people to access higher education from their homes. Partners in 11 countries recently launched the first pan-European MOOCs with the support of the European Commission. The high-level group's next report is due to be published in June 2014. Read more...

Posté par pcassuto à 03:55 - - Permalien [#]
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