Top Ten

October 27, 2011

Canadian universities make new commitments to meet need of citizens

At the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada's 100th annual meeting on Wednesday, University of British Columbia president Stephen Toope -- the new chair of AUCC -- made 5 commitments on behalf of Canadian universities. They are: to broaden the view of education, and to invite and lead a cross-Canada conversation about the entire education system; to innovate in learning and enhance university students’ learning experience to ensure it is research-enriched and globally engaged; to ensure that every student is fully equipped to play a role in a larger world and new kind of Canada; to concentrate the world’s best minds on the world’s toughest problems, with a commitment to continued growth of graduate students and robust research; and to cultivate engagement and reach beyond institutions to create alliances, partnerships and initiatives of shared purpose. In an interview with the Globe and Mail, Toope says universities need to address 3 major obstacles: the funding squeeze; revamping undergraduate experiences; and the global footrace. AUCC News Release | Globe and Mail

MacEwan to sell satellite campuses to fund downtown expansion

Grant MacEwan University president David Atkinson says the institution is moving forward with plans to become "Edmonton's downtown university" by selling 2 satellite campuses worth approximately $64 million. MacEwan is in "ongoing and very intense" talks to sell its south campus to the Millwoods Christian School, an alternative program with Edmonton Public Schools that is need of more space. Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel has expressed interest in the municipality buying MacEwan's west-end campus. Atkinson says the proceeds from selling the 2 satellite campuses, plus funding raised through an upcoming capital campaign, will fund expansion at MacEwan's downtown campus. It is part of an overhaul that will include rebranding the institution as MacEwan University and embracing its role as a top undergraduate teaching institution. Edmonton Journal

Boréal unveils site for new Toronto campus

On Wednesday, Sudbury-based Collège Boréal announced the site of its future Toronto campus. As of September 2012, students will enjoy the benefits of a 47,000-square-foot campus at 1 Yonge Street, double the space available at Boréal's 2 current locations in Toronto. The new campus is located in the Toronto Star building and close to public transit. The campus will be part of Boréal's network of 35 access centres servicing 24 Ontario cities. Boréal News Release

Child immigrants who come to Canada at a younger age more likely to finish high school, study finds

According to a new study published by Statistics Canada, children who immigrate to Canada have a better chance of completing secondary school if they immigrate at a younger age. Conducted by a University of Ottawa professor, the study observes that child immigrants coming to Canada after the age of 9 are more likely to drop out of high school than those immigrating at a younger age. The study's author says the chances of not completing high school are about 15% for boys and 11% for girls who immigrate to Canada before the age of 9, and the chances of immigrants not getting a high school diploma rise progressively after age 9, increasing by more than one percentage point for each subsequent year. The professor says the age of 9 is an important turning point in the development of a child's cognitive capacities as he or she transitions from "learning to read" to "reading to learn." uOttawa News Release | Read the report

Concordia researchers investigate academic integrity in arts and science faculty

According to a Concordia University research team's preliminary findings in a study on academic integrity in the institution's Faculty of Arts and Science, most instances of academic misconduct are reported among students enrolled in social science programs, and that these violations typically occur during first-year courses. Researchers found that cases of academic dishonesty are reported by a relatively small contingent of faculty members from a few departments. The findings suggests that non-exam related cases make up the bulk of academic misconduct, and the most frequently cited charge is when a student plagiarizes and appropriates the work of others. So far, researchers have found disciplinary actions can have rehabilitating results. “Few students, surprisingly, contest (charges for breaking the code of conduct)," says the faculty's associate dean of student academic services. "When given a second chance, most students opt to continue with their program and few reoffend.” Concordia News

Poll finds most Canadians want to pay less university tuition

According to a poll conducted for the Globe and Mail, 58% of respondents said they would pay only $2,000 to $4,000 for annual university tuition for themselves or their children, and 24% said they would pay no more than $2,000. The current average cost of university tuition outside of Quebec, including compulsory ancillary fees, is approximately $6,000. 54% of respondents said Canadian universities are not focused enough on career preparation, while 20% felt they are too career-focused and 27% said they had the right balance. To succeed in a career, 38% said it is necessary to have a university graduate degree, 14% an undergraduate degree, and 26% a college program. 46% felt a university education was of greater benefit for people entering the labour market, while 31% said a college education was better. Globe and Mail

Financial Times ranks York U EMBA top in Canada

York University's Kellogg-Schulich Executive MBA program places first among Canadian business programs in new rankings by the Financial Times of London. The program ranked 11th overall. Other Canadian EMBAs appearing in the rankings include those offered at uToronto's Rotman School of Management (28), UWO's Richard Ivey School of Business (36), Queen's School of Business (44 in partnership with Cornell University and 84 on its own), and uAlberta and uCalgary (73). York U News Release | Financial Times EMBA Rankings 2011

Brescia releases architectural renderings of new residence complex

New designs show Brescia University College's new residence complex -- set to open in September 2013 -- will feature a series of houses -- with groupings of 2 single rooms sharing a bathroom -- that will each accommodate 32 to 40 students. Each room will include big closets (something Brescia students told the institution they wanted) and window seats. The 300-seat dining pavilion will be open to the public for dining in a "marché-style" with multiple stations, each offering fresh, made-to-order dishes. Architectural Renderings

GPRC launches Canada's first beekeeping vocational program

Starting in January 2012, Grande Prairie Regional College's Fairview campus will offer the first beekeeping vocational program in the country for the education and training of commercial beekeepers. The certificate program will prepare students for employment as apiary assistants and field supervisors with commercial beekeeping operations, technicians with government agriculture departments, and self-employment as beekeepers. GPRC president Don Gnatiuk believes that through the college's partnership with Agriculture and Agri-Foods Canada and the beekeeping industry in Alberta, GPRC "is poised to establish an apiculture centre of excellence which will be respected through the world." GPRC News Release

Seneca symposium hosts Canadian public debut of $25 computer

Taking place this weekend, Seneca College's tenth annual Free Software and Open Source Symposium will host the Canadian public debut of a $25 computer to be available at the end of the year. Based on an ARM chip, the computer was developed by the UK-based Raspberry Pi Foundation, whose mission is to promote the study of computer science and related topics, particularly at school. ARM develops chips that are known for combining a high level of functionality with extremely low power consumption. Seneca News Release