All Posts Tagged With: "international"
Eight universities’ departments among top 50 worldwide
The QS World University Subject Rankings 2013 are out now. The London-based company’s report offers a rare peek at how our school’s history, engineering and law programs—30 subjects in all—are viewed internationally.
Unsurprisingly, the top three universities from the Medical Doctoral category of the Maclean’s University Rankings—the University of Toronto, the University of British Columbia and McGill University—are also the top Canadian schools on the list. Those three are top five in Canada in 29 of 30 subjects and top 50 worldwide in many.
The highest ranked Canadian subject is geography at the University of British Columbia, which is tenth globally. There are also several subjects in the top 15: environmental science at UBC along with medicine, philosophy, linguistics, mathematics, sociology, geography, education, English and history at University of Toronto.
Internal government study cites budget cuts, winter
Canada is failing to attract high-quality university students from China, India and Brazil, internal research commissioned by the Foreign Affairs Department concludes.
The findings of the focus groups conducted in those countries represent a setback to the Harper government’s ambitious efforts to broaden Canadian trade and investment in the three emerging markets.
Initiatives designed to forge educational links have been a feature of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s strategy to deepen economic ties with Asia during his trips to China and India this year.
Meanwhile, Gov. Gen. David Johnston travelled to Brazil in the spring with 30 university presidents in tow, one of the biggest delegations abroad to push the benefits of Canadian education.
A fake medical student, a fake gun & Dalton McGuinty
1. After nine years as premier of Ontario, Dalton McGuinty stepped down last night and prorogued the legislature. By 9 p.m., the newspapers had stories suggesting he’ll run for the federal Liberals against Justin Trudeau. Paul Wells writes that he would be astonished by that. “But then, McGuinty has already astonished me once tonight,” he adds. Wells explores the Teflon Premier’s legacy and examines a (possibly) telling recent speech.
2. A man rejected from medical school at New Zealand’s Auckland University decided to go anyway. He spent two years attending classes, labs, and hospital placements and was only caught when a classmate put his name on a group assignment.
3. A 28-year-old woman who was walking to the University of Windsor Monday was told by a man carrying a fake gun to hand over a computer bag. The woman described the gun as “two sticks taped together.” The University of Windsor Campus Police arrested and charged a 21-year-old.
Uncomfortable washrooms, tuition, & angry naked folks
1. Some students at the University of Victoria are uncomfortable with the new “multi-stall gender inclusive washrooms” in the Student Union Building. The student union got rid of the old man-woman divide by renovating urinals and changing the gendered signs to show just a toilet. The goal is to make life more comfortable for transgender students. I guess one person’s comfort is another person’s discomfort sometimes.
2. The new Mattamy Athletic Centre at the Gardens (formerly Maple Leaf Gardens) is sponsored by Molson Coors. There are multiple beer ads and beer is for sale in the concession. While hockey fans are saying “thank God,” other people apparently have a problem with it. Ryerson University President Sheldon Levy, true to form, has a pragmatic response: “you can sneeze and be within 40 paces of the Gardens and have alcohol, so how am I supposed to police things?,” he told The Eyeopener, adding, “I consider the students adults and I trust them to make judgments.”
3. Two University of Regina students are seeking sanctuary in a church after the Canada Border Services Agency decided to deport them to Nigeria because they illegally worked for two weeks at Walmart. U of R President Vianne Timmons is lobbying the government to allow them to stay.
A “white pride” club, Turkey Syndrome and dead dogs
1. Fourteen lifeguards in El Monte, Calif. were fired for a spoof video featuring Korean pop singer PSY’s signature horse-riding dance moves. Their “Lifeguard Style” video was an homage to the viral hit “Gangnam Style.” Officials say they were fired for using city property improperly, but one of the fired lifeguards says she was told by the city that they found the video “disgusting.”
2. An American student at Towson University is planning a “white-pride organization.” Matthew Heimbach, a U.S. history major, sparked controversy last year when his Youth for Western Civilization group criticized Islam and same-sex marriage. Heimbach says whites are discriminated against. Out of respect for free speech, university officials say the group will be tolerated.
3. About 2,000 people at the University of Guelph set a world record on Saturday by packaging 315,000 emergency relief meals in a single hour. The food help fight famine in Mauritania.
Kristen Stewart, TIFF, Jimmy Kimmel is mean & bubble tea
1. Maclean’s, headquartered in the city currently known as TIFF, has a team working to bring you the latest news on films and celebrities right here. You thought Kristen Stewart, that famous double-timer, would steal all the attention? Well, she sure did. Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon Levitt, whose sci-fi flick Looper opened the festival, were also popular on the red carpet last night.
2. While we’re on the topic of TIFF, intrepid Maclean’s reporter Jessica Allen is seeing Spring Break today. It’s the movie students everywhere are talking about—and I can see why. It has a classic plot: Selena Gomez and friends rob a restaurant so that they can party in Florida, but get busted for drugs and then have to rely on James Franco to bail them out of prison.
3. Comedian Jimmy Kimmel launched a segment on his show called “Hey Jimmy Kimmel, I Got My Kid a Horrible Back-to-School Outfit.” Not everyone thinks it’s funny. Parents taped the horrified reactions of kids given embarrassing back-to-school clothes. The segment included more than a few homophobic stereotypes, including one t-shirt that says “I’m So Gay I Sh*t Rainbows.”
Helena Guergis, student housing, Obama and Occupy
1. The University of Alberta’s class of first-year law students will include Helena Guergis, a former junior cabinet minister who had a very public spat with Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Perhaps she’s studying up for her appeal after her lawsuit against the PM was dismissed last week.
2. Students in Fredericton, N.B. have their pick of where to live, due to declining local enrollment.
3. Students in booming Saskatchewan have trouble finding anywhere to live. Vianne Timmons, president of the University of Regina, says a student stopped her on the street to ask if she knew any rentals. New residences are coming.
Mexico’s students have upended the presidential race
From Maclean’s magazine. By Gabriela Perdomo.
Just weeks ago, Enrique Peña Nieto seemed to have Mexico’s July 1 election easily in hand. But a series of demonstrations led by students at a posh Mexico City university has shaken the centrist Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) candidate’s campaign, putting a significant dent in his lead.
What had been a dull race was turned on its head on May 11, when Peña Nieto was speaking at the private Universidad Iberoamericana, “La Ibero,” as it is known, in Mexico City. Before then, Peña Nieto looked set to crush both Josefina Vázquez Mota, the governing National Action Party (PAN) candidate, and Andrés Manuel López Obrador of the left-wing PRD, the Party of the Democratic Revolution.
A Waterloo start-up provides courses on smartphones
To hear Dean Pacey describe online learning is a lesson in how the Internet—despite its vastness—can actually be a very personal place. In fact, taking courses over a computer, he believes, has the potential to make education more intimate and effective than any typical class-teacher setting, which is often full of distractions.
“When I go to university and I sign up for psych 100, I’m sitting with 1,500 other students with one talking head who I can’t hear and who may or may not speak English well at the front of the room,” he says. “How is that a rich experience?”
By comparison, Pacey imagines a world in which students in any country can pick and choose the courses they’d like to take over the Internet from the best international schools, many of which are in Canada. These courses would feature video lectures, online chats and news feeds related to the content, and would be delivered in whatever language the student preferred. Even more surprising: while the course content could be viewed on a computer screen or tablet, it would be designed, first and foremost, for smartphones—making the “classroom” entirely mobile and available anytime, anywhere.
Concert would “deeply offend”
Tel Aviv University will not permit a scheduled Richard Wagner concert to take place on its campus after angry protests, reports Haaretz. A university spokesperson chastised the show’s organizer, Attorney Yonathan Livni, saying that the performance would “deeply offend the Israeli public in general and Holocaust survivors in particular.” Livni is the founder of the Israel Wagner Society. Wagner, a nineteeth century composer, espoused anti-Semitic views and was a favorite of Adolf Hitler, the German chancellor who led the Holocaust that killed six-million Jews during World War II.
Luka Rocco Magnotta arrested in Berlin, Germany
Update (11:00 a.m. EST): Police in Berlin, Germany have arrested Magnotta.
With an international manhunt underway for Luka Rocca Magnotta, the weekend papers worked overtime to fill in details surrounding the case of the fugitive who police allege is responsible for the heinous killing and dismemberment of Lin Jun, a foreign student in Montreal.
Here is just some of what journalists have turned up:
- 1. Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird has talked to Chinese officials about the case. “I just spoke to China’s ambassador to Canada to convey my deep condolences on the senseless killing of Chinese student Jun Lin,” read a message sent Friday through Baird’s Twitter account.2. Lin was in Montreal to attend school, but his real goal was to find love. A three-byline story in the Globe and Mail suggests the Chinese native’s stated ambition was to marry. “He was in computers, and he was looking for love,” a former classmate told the Globe team.
3. Lin’s online presence was complicated. A second Globe story reported from Beijing reports that while the student went to see The Smurfs movie in 3D and liked to post cat photos on social media, his Internet persona also revealed a troubled side. Reports the Globe’s Mark MacKinnon from Beijing: “On Valentine’s Day last year, he posted a computer-altered photograph of himself with wild purple hair and a cracked face that turns grey around a mouth of broken and missing teeth. ‘My self-portrait,’ he wrote beneath the repulsive image.”
4. Lin loved nothing more than to go to dinner with friends. “Korean barbecue was his favourite,” reports Andrew Chung of the Toronto Star. Continue reading Body-parts murder: 10 new things we know
Asian Tigers and Australia dominate new ranking
University rankings often favour older institutions, because, in many cases, older schools have bigger endowments, more alumni and prestige.
The new QS Top 50 under 50 ranking takes the age-bias into account by removing all the universities founded before 1962.
Young schools are ranked on the same six criteria used in the QS World Top 300 ranking: academic reputation, employer reputation, citations per faculty, student/faculty ratio, international student ratio and international faculty ratio.
But the results are very different. In the World Top 300 rankings, the U.S. and U.K. dominate. Canada has 14 entries, but none are in the Top 50.
Universitas 21 releases first world ranking
Researchers have created what they say is the first ranking of countries from best to worst at providing higher education. The report is from Universitas 21, a network of research-intensive universities whose Canadian members are McGill and the University of British Columbia.
The ranking followed a detailed examination of 48 countries using 20 metrics, including both input and output measures (see below). Each nation’s score is a percentage of the winner’s score, which was automatically 100. Here are the top 20:
Drips relax and energize students ahead of exams: school
An official in China has confirmed that a controversial photo of high school students hooked up to intravenous drips is real, reports China Daily.
The photo, taken at a school in Xiaogang City, Hubei during a late-night study session, was posted by a microblogger this week and quickly spread across the country. Students are currently preparing for June’s competitive National College Entrance Exam, also known as the Gaokao.
A spokesman for the school said that the drips contain amino acids to help students relax and stay energized. Experts warn that the practice has no proven benefit and comes with a small risk of infection.
Toronto, McGill and UBC in top 25
Three Canadian universities are among the top 25 schools worldwide in the newly-released 2012 Times Higher Education Reputation Rankings.
The University of Toronto ranks 16th. McGill University and the University of British Columbia are tied for 25th place. No other Canadian school is on the top 100 list.
Our universities’ reputations outshine those in most other countries, especially when our relatively smaller population is considered.
Among the top 25 (which includes two ties) fifteen are located in the United States, four are in the United Kingdom, two are in Japan, and there is one each in Singapore and Switzerland.
Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of Cambridge took the top three spots.
Why they got rid of the University of Western Ontario
There ‘s much fuss among alumni over the news that Western is changing its name, for most day-to-day purposes, to Western. Or Western University. Or Western University Canada.
What it won’t call itself, in colloquial use, is the University of Western Ontario. That remains the place’s legal name, but it won’t be the name Western travels with.
This is all causing a certain amount of consternation among people with a link to Western and, I think it’s fair to say, to people who follow branding exercises with a certain healthy amount of skepticism. Objections I heard this morning include:
1. This is dumb. Everyone calls it Western already.
2. This is dumb. It’s in Eastern Canada.
3. This is dumb. It’s in Southern Ontario.
To me, it’s not as dumb, but its cleverness takes a bit of explaining. Continue reading That’s Western University to you
Students had been waiting in line for days
A woman died from head and chest injuries and three others are in critical condition after a stampede at the University of Johannesburg in South Africa, reports The Telegraph.
It happened on Tuesday morning after hundreds of applicants and their families stormed a gate to try and get coveted spots in the university. Some had waited in line since Sunday morning. The university received 85,000 applications for 11,000 first-year spots. The seats available Tuesday were “overfill.”
South Africa has a youth unemployment rate of roughly 50 per cent, according to the OECD.
Police are investigating
Joey Basha, a 25-year-old Canadian who had been studying international and public affairs at the University of Hong Kong, was found dead last week by local police. Basha, originally from Newfoundland and Labrador, disappeared Dec. 21st after going for takeout food, prompting a search by his family. Police found him last week dead in a public washroom, but without any identification documents. They told CBC News that they do not consider his death suspicious.*
*Update at 11:30 on Dec. 29: Phyllis Basha told The Canadian Press that police say evidence from an autopsy has prompted a criminal investigation into her son’s death.
Closed for renovations or revenge?
Côte d’Ivoire, a West African nation, has had its two universities shut down by President Alassane Ouattara until at least September 2012, provoking condemnation by human rights organizations frustrated that students will lose even more time.
Côte d’Ivoire has experienced increased instability in recent years following a civil war from 2002 to 2004 and a 2010 election when former President Laurent Gbagbo refused to step down after losing the vote. He was ousted with the aid of French and United Nations troops earlier this year and is now facing justice in the International Criminal Court at The Hague. The fighting caused many lost semesters at the country’s two universities.
Now, Ouattara’s government will close both the Cocody and Abobo-Adjamé universities again, ostensibly to renovate the buildings and reorganize the higher education system to meet international standards. But some Ivorians believe the closure is punishment for students and professors who supported Gbagbo. You can read more at University World News.
A student’s revolt against Pinochet’s school reforms
Story by Richard Warnica.
If one were to rank the legacies of the Pinochet era in Chile, education reform wouldn’t likely make most lists. The former dictator devastated his country in many ways. Thousands of his opponents were murdered or simply disappeared. Countless more were tortured or forced into exile. But Augusto Pinochet also radically deregulated the education market, pulling funds from the public sector in the early 1980s and spreading them into a parallel private system. Remarkably, it is that decision that has his country roiling today.