The week that was

For those who trust in God but require all others to bring data, the week got off to a great start with the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research releasing its analysis of university systems. Yes, the US is number one but drilling into the data revealed the Europeans lead for overall resources and community connections, (CMM Monday). The week finishes just as well for data fiends, with the Leiden rankings on research performance (above) – just in time to ruin research office weekends as staff prepare reports for DVC Rs on Monday.

And then the QILT was uncovered, the Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching, which reveal what tens of thousands of surveyed students think about the job their university (or private provider) is doing. Bond U, U Notre Dame and the (Melbourne based) University of Divinity are in the top three spots, same as last year. Some universities preferred to ignore the whole thing, which is understandable given the way institutions that bang-on about the UG experience turn out not be wildly popular with their own students (CMM Wednesday). Some but not all kept heads down. UNSW had a shocker of a score, same as last year – so DVC Academic Merlin Crossley stepped up to explain what the university is doing about it, (CMM yesterday). Always game to have a go is the learned Crossley.

And then there were losses that really hurt.

The  big story at RMIT is academics fearing they will lose their offices in a building move, a fear the university did not exactly refute in a long statement. University teaching experts are also upset to learn that this year’s awards are way behind schedule and have no budget for prizes (CMM, Monday).

And humanities and social science researchers are appalled that they will get access to three fifths of sod-all of the government’s long-term budget for research infrastructure (CMM Wednesday.)  It took a while for some to realise how little capex they get the use of – but that’s the thing about delivered data, the devil is always in the detail.


to get daily updates on what's happening in the world of Australian Higher Education