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Ontario Tech University has launched the Student Experience Guarantee, a program that will allow students to withdraw from their program and receive a refund if they are dissatisfied with their learning experience. Any full- or part-time student enrolled in the Fall 2020 term will be able to withdraw from their program by October 9th and receive a full tuition refund with no penalty. “The university is committed to helping students reach their goals by ensuring academic programming for the upcoming fall and winter semesters provides continuity, and students receive the highest-quality university experience possible,” reads an Ontario Tech statement. “Students can feel confident about enrolling in the fall.” Ontario Tech (ON)

Ontario Tech launches program that offers delayed deadlines, penalty-free tuition refunds Top Ten Wed, 05/27/2020 - 03:41
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Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has announced that it will not refuse study permit applications that are missing documents due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Three key areas of the applications that some have been unable to complete include biometrics, medical examinations, and submitting original travel documents. The temporary measure also extends to Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) applicants who are unable to get a letter of completion or a final transcript from their Designated Learning Institution (DLI). Additionally, if a student’s status changes from full time to part-time due to changes in the programming at their DLI for the Winter and Summer 2020 semesters, they will still be eligible to apply for a PGWP. CIC News (National)

IRCC announces they will accept incomplete study permit, PGWP applications Top Ten Tue, 05/26/2020 - 03:42
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International students studying at postsecondary institutions in Nova Scotia are asking schools to consider lowering tuition fees or eliminating differential fees amid the shift to online learning prompted by the pandemic. Beatrice Chiang, president of the Dalhousie International Students’ Association, noted that international students in the province typically pay twice the tuition fees of domestic students, but “won’t make the same level of meaningful connections” that they would have in a classroom or on-campus setting. Other international student concerns outlined by Chiang and other NS international students include financial hardships, the quality of education delivered online, the loss of practical education components, and how the switch to online learning will impact grades. The Chronicle Herald notes that universities in NS are reviewing tuition fees for the upcoming fall semester, noting they have bursaries and other financial supports in place to support students during this time. Chronicle Herald (NS)

NS international students ask postsecondary institution to consider lowering tuition fees Top Ten Mon, 05/25/2020 - 03:43
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The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador has announced the launch of a new Students Supporting Communities Program. The program will provide grants to organizations that will enable them to hire students to support vulnerable groups facing social isolation during the pandemic. “Intergenerational and community connections create important opportunities to reduce and eliminate the isolation and loneliness that many people may be feeling during this Public Health Emergency,” said Minister of Children, Seniors and Social Development Lisa Dempster. “The Students Supporting Communities Program will facilitate those connections by mobilizing students to help individuals connect with and access vital supports and services.” NL (NL)

NL launches new Students Supporting Communities Program creating work opportunities Top Ten Fri, 05/22/2020 - 03:38
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The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) has announced funding for 128 new applied research projects that will allow Canadian colleges, CÉGEPs, and polytechnics to develop innovative solutions for business challenges. The $76M investment was made through the tri-agency College and Community Innovation Program and the Canada Foundation for Innovation’s College-Industry Innovation Fund. “Colleges play a pivotal and unique role within their communities by providing cutting-edge applied research expertise and state-of-the-art facilities that drive local innovation,” said NSERC President Alejandro Adem. “These R&D collaborations contribute not only to the development and commercialization of new products and services for Canadians, but also the creation of new quality jobs and valuable training experience for our future generation of workers.” NSERC (National)

NSERC announces $76M investment into applied research with colleges, CÉGEPs, and polytechnics Top Ten Thu, 05/21/2020 - 03:42
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Yukon College has officially become Yukon University, the country’s first university north of 60°. YukonU will deliver over 50 degrees, diplomas, certificates, trades, and university prep programs while continuing the school’s tradition of northern-focused education. “As YukonU, we promise to continue anticipating and meeting your education and research needs, to offer an accessible pathway for every learner, and to contribute to a strong, resilient north,” said YukonU President Karen Barnes. “Thank you to everyone who has supported our journey along the way.” Until in-person celebrations can resume, the school is marking the launch with a renewed website and rebranded social media channels. YukonU (YK)

Yukon College becomes Yukon University Top Ten Wed, 05/20/2020 - 03:41
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The Canadian Digital Learning Research Association / Association canadienne de recherche sur la formation en ligne, in partnership with Royal Roads University, Bay View Analytics, and Academica Group, have released the findings of a survey of faculty and administrators’ expectations for educational delivery this fall. The survey revealed that faculty and administrators are largely envisioning multiple scenarios, with a possible need to pivot mid-term. It also revealed differences between colleges and universities, with respondents from colleges indicating that fully online, synchronous delivery was most likely, and respondents from universities anticipating an eventual partial return to in-person courses. “Considering what faculty and administrators anticipate and the early announcements being made by institutions” said CDLRA Research Director Nicole Johnson, “it is evident that online and hybrid learning will be the status quo for the upcoming academic year.” CDLRA (National)

CDLRA releases online learning survey results Top Ten Thu, 05/21/2020 - 13:17
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With some institutions offering most or all of their educational programs online this fall, some university students are arguing that they should not have to pay full tuition. Law student Catherine Litinsky argued that if universities continue with online delivery there should “absolutely” be some sort of tuition cut, “especially if we’re losing [access] to resources in the law faculty to something like our library.” While reluctant to suggest a sweeping reduction in tuition, University of Waterloo professor James Skidmore noted that there may be some more hands-on programs where some fees could be waived or adjusted. Skidmore added that differences in student access to online learning as issues that will need to be addressed. Global News (National)

Some university students believe tuition should be reduced for online learning Top Ten Fri, 05/15/2020 - 03:38
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Several postsecondary institutions have announced online delivery for the fall term. Cape Breton University is the first university in Nova Scotia to announce they will be taking their fall term online. In addition, the University of Regina and Memorial University have also indicated that their fall terms will be delivered virtually. Conestoga College has announced that they expect the fall semester to be delivered in a remote format, with in-person delivery for essential hands-on activities that may be continued in strict accordance with public health guidelines. CBC (CBU) | CBC (URegina) | Conestoga (NS, SK, ON)

CBU, URegina, Conestoga announce online fall delivery Top Ten Thu, 05/14/2020 - 03:42
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Statistics Canada has released the initial results of their survey on how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting postsecondary students’ academic, employment, and financial situations. A little over half of participants reported some disruption to their academics, while just over one-third reported delayed or cancelled work placements, and one-quarter reported delayed or cancelled courses. Student employment has also been affected by COVID-19 as the majority of students who held employment at the beginning of March have either lost their job, were laid off, or are working fewer hours. The survey also revealed that many students were very or extremely concerned about losing their jobs in the future and having no job prospects in the near future; however, worries about finances decreased significantly with the release of the CESB. StatsCan (National)

StatsCan releases initial results of COVID-19 survey of over 100,000 postsecondary students Top Ten Wed, 05/13/2020 - 03:36

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