“Friends, Romans, Melbournians – don’t lend me your clobber”

Uni Melbourne Arts announces its ancient history, Classics Quiz (via Twitter). “Togas are optional, but there will be prizes.” Presumably this is to encourage patricians participating to keep them on.

There’s more in the Mail

In CMM for Wednesday, Gary Velan and Patsie Polly (UNSW) in creating teaching excellence metrics, here.

And Gretchen Dobson and Dirk Mulder, on how to find the lost international alumni opportunity, here.

The student achievement that sells Charles Sturt U

One CSU team wins the Big Idea advertising competition, for the 13th of 17th events –the runner-up is another CSU team

It’s another win for advertising academic Anne Llewellynn, who has coached a CSU team (often two) into the competition finals for 11 straight years.  The competition is run by the International Advertising Association and requires student teams from universities across the country to meet a brief from a real-world client. This year Coca Cola wanted a campaign to increase plastic bottle recycling.

How does she do it, you ask – she explained the success of her students to CMM back in 2017, here .

“Yes sir, no sir, cyber sir!”

“Drop and give me twenty (lines of code)!” ANU’s College of Engineering and Computer Science, responds (via Twitter) to news the university will run a cyber security bootcamp.

Andrew Norton joins ANU

He will become a professor of practice in higher education at the university’s Centre for Social Research and Methods

The centre’s work includes the ANU Poll and Australian Election Studies and it is connected to the university subsidiary the Social Research Centre, which creates the top-quality Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching.

Professor Norton will continue his decades of work on higher education data analysis at the interface of policy and politics. He has advised ministers and mandarins, undertaken federal government reviews and quizzically crunched the numbers on plans and polemics presented by state and federal governments of all persuasions.

Want to know what has happened, is happening and may well happen in post-school education? If Norton does not know he is working on it.

Uni Newcastle research schols

Small outlay, big investment

Uni Newcastle is investing in research talent, creating a $5m postgrad scholarship fund, which covers tuition, and a three and half year living allowance, plus supports. The first round of 45 recipients was split between 30 locals and 15 internationals. Sounds like a cost-efficient deal – a bunch support  for new talent, for not much money.

Making the most of India opportunities for Macquarie U

You can’t fault marketers for having a go

Macquarie U expects “flat international student demand next year, in “challenging and volatile” markets (CMM November 6). It’s one of the reasons VC S Bruce Dowton gives for a hiring freeze and splitting up a faculty.

But you can’t fault marketers for having a go. A learned reader points to  marketing for MU in India which promises eligible students a $40 000 scholarship to study at “a globally renowned university,” which is “one of Australia’s top ten.”

The scholarships look the sector-common discount on list-price fees but what is the “top-ten” Macquarie U is part of?

Perhaps it is all the work of an enthusiastic agent.

Claire Field on what’s to like in the AQF review


There are six recommendations  to support in the Australian Qualifications Framework review

Since CMM published my article last week on the AQF Review I have had a number of people ask me for my thoughts on the other recommendations made in the report.

Before I tackle them, I should note that a gremlin crept in to last week’s article. It referred to “one of the review’s major failing is its application”. Actually, it’s the current AQF that fails in its application, and the examples of current problems in qualification design are testament to that. In fact, I have subsequently been advised that we have a Diploma of Applied Fashion Design and Merchandising with 35 units of competency (and its electives can include units from the Diploma of Business which you’ll recall comprises a grand total of 8 units!)

Recommendations from the Review which I support are:

* recognising micro-credentials in the AQF

* identifying general capabilities (if this works when implemented)

* expressing volumes of learning in hours for the new learner

* not trying to determine a specific AQF level for the Senior Secondary Certificate of Education

* introducing credit points, and

* re-introducing a governance body specifically responsible for the AQF.

I don’t yet have a view on the proposed “realignment options” for the AQF from 10 levels to eight bands because (a) there are a number of options presented in the Review for this change and (b) I’m not clear on the implications. On this I would definitely defer to the views of those at the coalface charged with qualification design.

Claire Field advises on VET, international education and private higher education.

Appointments, achievements

Alison Booth (ANU) is a new fellow of the (international) Econometric Society

Mark Brimble will become dean, learning and teaching, for Griffith U’s Business School, in January. He will move up from head of the accounting, finance and economics department.

Iain Walker is to join ANU as director of the Research School of Psychology. He moves from Uni Canberra.

Sally Way switches lobbies, joining the Australian Technology Network from the Innovative Research Universities. She becomes engagement manager at ATN.


The Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia announces its four 2019 Paul Bourke Awards for Early Career Research; * Elise Klein (Uni Melbourne), * David Frazier (Monash U), Rebecca Ananian-Welsh (Uni Queensland), Melissa Day (Uni Queensland)

Edith Cowan U announces VC staff excellence awards;

 Research: Simon Laws, (Medical and Health Sciences)

Early career researcher: Stephanie Godrich, (Medical and Health Sciences)

Research engagement: Nicolas Hart (Medical and Health Sciences)

Research supervision: Lyndall Adams (Arts and Humanities)

Student learning: * Ross Hollett, (Arts and Humanities), * Greg Willson, (Business and Law), * Shelley Beatty, (Medical and Health Sciences), * Business and Law Work Integrated Learning – Denise Jackson, Karen Woods, Jo Martin and Arron Jackson, * Jason Sharbanee, (Arts and Humanities), * Donna Barwood Greg Willson, (Education)

Diversity, equity, inclusion: Robert Powell, (Business and Law)

Enhance learning: Melanie Day, Jacqui Hunt (Medical and Health Sciences), Tania Beament (Nursing and Midwifery)

Integrity: Richard Hughes, (Business and Law), Steve Gardiner, (Arts and Humanities)

Respect: Fiona Navin, (Student Life)

Personal excellence: Erin Bishop, (Student Life), Georgina Ferreira, (Business Growth and Development)

Inspirational teams: * Virtual Reality Health Simulation Collaboration, * Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, * School of Medical and Health Sciences, * School of Arts and Humanities Collection Team, Library Services

Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Advancement: Nigel Andrews, Human Resources Service Centre

Health and safety practice: Amanda Allerding, (Arts and Humanities)

For-profit journal giant Elsevier making nice

As the open access push increases in Europe and the US the publisher is adopting different approaches

It is holding the line on pay to read/pay to publish in some markets (note the stand-off with the University of California) and reaching deals on profitable OA across Europe.

Elsevier is also reminding whoever will listen that it is an immense data resource, which is essential to research, (the company is certainly investing in products to make this so).

CEO Kumsal Bayazit set out the Elsevier approach in a speech to a library conference last week.

“The question is not whether open access is desirable or beneficial — the question is how we get there,” she said, citing different agreements adopted in different markets. Although, she discretely reminded her audience, “we are a for-profit company, but we are a very responsible one.”

And she made it clear that researchers need the services Elsevier provides now and is creating, including new indicators for research impact and, “tools that enable researchers automatically to document their methods, protocols and to implement data management plans.”

It is not a speech that will appeal to free to read, free to publish advocates but it demonstrated how Elsevier has vast and profitable resources in research publishing and data management, and will adapt to keep them.