Some students rate rankings

League table boosters are right – students do pay attention to them – just not many of them

Academic support adviser (and CMM advertiser) Studiosity reports 11 per cent of survey responders considered “global ranking scores” in selecting a course/university. Sroll down for more.

There’s more in the Mail

In Features this morning

Merlin Crosley (UNSW) on the big Accord issues – access and research funding. “We don’t know where the next Einstein will come from, but we don’t want to miss her.”

plus There are five myths on curricular approaches to student wellbeing – here’s how to bust them. Jacquelyn Cranney, Nalini Pather, Leesa Sidhu, and Gary Velan (all UNSW) explain in this week’s selection by Commissioning Editor Sally Kift for her celebrated series, Needed now in learning and teaching.

with Conor King (Tertiary Education Analysis) on the purposes of higher education: personal development, economic outcome and social status. Plus what Dr Seuss has to teach about the third, HERE.

and Sean Brawley, Richard Cook and Ellenie Petrou on how Uni Wollongong learned to manage change

Drink as much as you like to that

The SA Government announces funding for a no and low alcohol wine test machine at Uni Adelaide. Vinters will be able to trial NOLO drops in 150 litre batches. Apparently commercial tests need 10 000 litres.

And about time too! feds fund independent research commercialisation metrics

This used to be done by what is now the Department of Industry and Science, but the long-running National Survey of Research Commercialisation had come to be considered cumbersome and was dropped in 2016.

Public institution tech transfer association, Knowledge Commercialisation Australia stepped up to meet an obvious need in 2020, with its Survey of Commercialisation Outcomes from Public Research.

And now the Department of Education is funding SCOPR, to “improve commercialisation metrics.”

Curious DoE wasn’t doing it in ’21 when the then government was gung-hoing about picking research market- winners.

What works at work

After all the pandemic pain it’s time to work through the lessons of lockdown and build better HE workplaces

HEjobs invites you to an in-person event to talk, listen and learn about jobs that work better HERE.

They’re back: big lift in international student arrivals

but they’re not quite what they were pre-pandemic

The Bureau of Statistics reports 142 580 international student arrivals in February, up 93 000 on Feb ’22. HE was the big winner with 110 000 arrivals, a 65 per cent increase.

VET arrivals grew from 4 000 to 13 000.

However student arrivals still trail the last pandemic-free Feb, 22 per cent lower than 2019

Universities Australia advises provisional figures have March student arrival at 54 000.

According to DoE, as of end March there were 506 000 student visa holders in the country, 296 000 of them in HE and 135 000 in VET.

On-line, on campus: where students want to study

The big three choices for study selection are course (37 per cent), location (20 per cent) and flexibility between on-line and on-campus (14 percent)

The finding is in a survey by academic support adviser (and CMM advertiser) Studiosity for its new Student Wellbeing Report.

On-line particularly appeals to older students with more commitments than campus. Those 24 plus, part-timers and parents/carers are two to nearly three times more likely to value flexible study than other groups.

As do regional students, 23 per cent compared to 11 per cent for metros.

Preference for in-person connection with fellow students also declines with age, from 80 per cent plus among 18-21 year olds, to 52 per cent for those 30 plus.

As to what attracts people to campus, 59 per cent of total responders cite friends, 53 per cent mention “incentives – free food, merchandise, concerts” and 49 per cent want free parking.

Happy to be at work today?

If you work in HE, we really want to know – about your week, your year and your working life in general

Twig Marketing and CMM are collaborating to survey Australian higher education staff over the next month, to get a better understanding of why you do what you do, and how you are enjoying your job.

There’s a random prize draw for a $250 gift card if you choose to leave your details at the end (all results will of course be de-identified) and we are going to use the results to provide some insights into where the HE sector is headed.

The survey should only take 2-3 minutes, based on early respondents, and will really help get new discussions underway on a whole range of issues that usually fly under the radar.

Please dive in and share your thoughts:

Innovative idea, still needs work

Submissions to the Senate committee inquiry on the bill for a student entrepreneur Start Up Year close today. Some content is familiar

Education Minister Jason Clare agreed the bill should go to a Senate committee after it passed the Reps with substantial criticism of the good-idea-needs-work kind (CMM March 27).

Which is a point made by organisations making submissions to the Senate Education and Employment Legislation Committee, pointing to submissions to the DoE consultation, before the bill, last year.

Universities Australia tells senators it originally suggested, “a working group to work through some of the constraints” nominating, programme purpose, value for students, funding arrangements and implementation “issues”.

It makes the same top recommendation to the Senate committee, “establish a working group to provide advice to Government on the development of the Startup Year programme.”

Warning from WA: student visa system being undermined

Navitas co-founder Rod Jones warns WA’s international education reputation is at risk

“Some education providers and agents are undermining the integrity of the student visa system,” Mr Jones (chair of Study Perth) and Pankaj Pathak (WA Private Education and Training Industry Association) told members yesterday.

They warned that “large numbers of in-coming students granted visas for tertiary and ‘high-level’ vocational programmes are switching to lower level courses ‘within days of arrival’.” This is being done by issue of a “concurrent confirmation of enrolment” for their new course, (which is a visa condition).

According to Jones and Pathak, “these students are being ‘advised’ to stop attending their primary course or, in many cases, not even beginning their primary course, putting the principal provider at risk of non-compliance.”

“This has a particular impact on VET and higher education institutions, which are losing students to providers who offer lower AQF courses,” they state.

“When students apply for concurrent studies, principal providers are not notified or have visibility into this, and they are thus left looking for their students to ensure their safety and wellbeing.”

This could threaten the original enrolling institution’s risk rating for visas and it could lead to, “a downgrade in Western Australia’s international reputation as a source of high-quality education and training.”

Not just WA’s

In March Mahsood Shah and James Collins (CMM HERE) warned;

“the ‘recycling’ of students by education agents is well known and organised prior to the student arriving onshore. Education agents are motivated by the financial benefits associated with switching education providers. An initial commission will be paid by the primary provider, followed by subsequent payments by onshore VET colleges and private providers once a student changes their course and study location.”