Top Ten

September 30, 2010

StFX student union rejects bishop as chancellor

St. Francis Xavier University's student union is opposed to the automatic appointment of the Bishop of Antigonish as chancellor of the institution, with members voting 14-1 this week against the practice, which is enshrined in StFX's bylaws. The student union president will present the student position at the next general meeting of the board of governors, which is the only body capable of repealing or amending the bylaws. A student group has been calling on StFX to end the practice, citing issues of merit, gender equality, and religious representation. Canadian Press registers 65,000th student, an online-education consortium of 22 Ontario colleges, reports that it has registered its 65,000th student. The consortium claims to be the largest provider of online courses in North America with more than 1,300 college courses offered. In addition, the partnering institutions have all developed their own certificates and diplomas that students can obtain online from their home. There are more than 50 certificates that are completely online, such as Human Resource Management, Medical Transcription, and Library and Information Technician. News Release

Seneca sets record enrolment

Seneca College reports it has hit its highest enrolment this fall in its 43-year history. With a full-time student population of 20,945, Seneca has seen its enrolment grow 4.6% over fall 2009, including over 2,600 international students. The institution also now has a total of 477 Second Career students retraining for new careers. Seneca News Release

Ryerson management school working on India strategy

Ryerson University's Ted Rogers School of Management has set up an India strategy group to chalk out its plans for the South Asian country, which includes offering its world-class courses to Indian students and forging ties with Indian universities. Although students of Indian origin account for about 10% of undergraduate courses, there are not many from India, says the school's dean. There are, however, quite a few students from India in graduate programs, and these numbers are expected to grow as the government has taken initiatives to attract more international students. Unlike York University's Schulich School of Business, Rogers does not plan to set up a campus in India; instead, its strategy entails partnerships with select Indian universities, faculty exchanges, and joint research programs. The Economic Times

Internationalization key objective in Douglas College strategic plan

Douglas College recently released its new 5-year strategic plan, which outlines a vision of the institution as the largest and most progressive degree-granting college in BC and presents a map to meeting changing demographics and educational needs. This entails an increasingly international outlook, more flexible learning options with fewer barriers, and further opportunities for experiential, hands-on learning. The plan calls for every domestic student to be given the opportunity to participate in an overseas experience, whether as part of an educational program or as an extra-curricular complement to their studies. Douglas College News Release | Read the strategic plan

Queen's professors take part in videotaped lecture pilot project

A pair of Queen's University professors are using video-captured lectures this year as part of an ongoing pilot project. One professor will videotape her Geography 101 lectures during the fall term and make them available online to the students enrolled in the course. For the same course during the winter term, the professor will substitute the in-class lecture with smaller group sessions by asking students to watch the recorded lectures from the fall semester on their own time. An electrical and computer engineering professor will use the lecture-capture technology primarily to accommodate the needs of some students. For upper-year students who switch to engineering and cannot fit the first-year Engineering Practice lecture into their course schedule, they can watch the videos instead. Queen's News Centre

UPEI introduces new coat of arms

The University of Prince Edward Island recently unveiled its new coat of arms, which depicts the heritage of the university's 2 founding institutions -- St. Dunstan's University and Prince of Wales College. An open book conveys UPEI's educational mission, while supporting black panthers represent the university's varsity sports teams. The rust and green colours evoke the landscape of PEI, and an oak tree and saplings reference the province's coat of arms. UPEI News Release

MIT considers fee for online lectures

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology is considering charging for online lectures and class notes, which are currently available for free. The director of MIT's Teaching and Learning Laboratory says that free access "may not be the best economic model, so now we are looking seriously at new e-learning opportunities." A leader in the Open Course Ware movement, MIT has come under growing financial pressure due to the drop in the value of its endowment, which has shrunk to $7.6 billion US from a high of $10.8 billion US in 2008. New York Times

uMontréal study finds correlation between popularity, drug and alcohol consumption among teens

New research from the Université de Montréal observes that alcohol and drug consumption by teenagers is not just about rebellion or emotional troubles, but also about being cool. The study, conducted on over 500 francophone students at 3 separate moments in their lives, found a increase in consumption as the child got older, regardless of their popularity level. However, the more popular a student and their friends were, the greater the consumption was. The study found a two-fold increase between ages 10 and 15 for the most popular kids who also had very popular friends, but this trend did not apply to popular students whose friends were not as popular. uMontréal News

Parental involvement increasing in admissions process, survey finds

In a new Kaplan survey of US college admissions officers, 77% report that parental involvement in the admissions process is rising, and because of this, 61% say their institution has been prompted to create new initiatives for parents. While the majority of colleges are developing resources just for parents, some are cutting parents out of the admissions process entirely. One respondent says that once a student is accepted, the institution is firm about interacting with the student only, not the parents. Another reports that their office will not discuss an applicant with his or her parent unless the student allows it. Kaplan News Release