Top Ten

November 9, 2020

CNA, MUN expand partnership to offer Bachelor of Technology degree

Memorial University’s Fisheries and Marine Institute and the College of the North Atlantic have renewed and expanded a five-year agreement. This agreement allows graduates from 19 three-year diploma programs offered by CNA the ability to ladder into MUN’s one-year Bachelor of Technology program. The Bachelor of Technology degree is offered online, and can be completed on a full or part-time basis. “Our expanded agreement continues to provide a clear pathway for students from College of the North Atlantic to further their education with an undergraduate degree from Memorial University by recognizing their post-secondary achievements at the diploma level and providing them with additional academic and career opportunities,” said Glenn Blackwood, VP of Memorial University (Marine Institute). CNA (NL)

UQAM, Library Archives Canada sign collaboration agreement

Université du Québec à Montréal and Library Archives Canada (LAC) have signed a five-year MOU that will see the sharing of expertise and knowledge, research, and technology. The agreement will include training programs, workshops and placement opportunities, as well as sharing primary source document collections and research facilities. “I am delighted about this collaborative agreement with Library and Archives Canada, which will contribute to the development of innovative digital projects for the benefit of research, teaching and the student experience at the Université du Québec à Montréal,” said UQAM Rector Magda Fusaro. UQAM | LAC (QC)

Designing better automated quizzes: Opinion

Online quizzes can be used to carry more instructional weight, writes Zachary Nowak. The article describes how frequent, low-stakes quizzes can enhance learning. The author gives quizzes before covering new material to test what students already know, and students complete the same quiz as many times as necessary after completing the material. The article argues that doing this activates pedagogical techniques such as prediction, the testing effect, and interleaving. Students predict answers, which helps with recalling the information when they do learn it. Instructors can include review questions to help students remember previous material. “Asking automated quizzes to carry more of the burden of instruction is an excellent way to use the strengths of the digital environment,” writes Nowak. Inside Higher Ed (International)

Douglas announces new BBA in Marketing

Douglas College has announced that it will be launching its 13th bachelor’s degree – a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing – in January 2021. Students in the new BBA in marketing will be able to choose from four concentrations: digital marketing and communications management; professional selling and sales management; hospitality marketing; and trades marketing. Graduates will be able to write the American Marketing Association and the Canadian Professional Sales Association certification exams. “The Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing fits elegantly into the suite of business degrees offered at Douglas,” said Thor Borgford, Douglas’s Vice President, Academic and Provost. “It creates exciting new career pathways and opportunities for our business students.” Douglas (BC)

Dropout rate decreases, remains steady at some Cegeps

Despite the semester’s added complications due to COVID-19 and online learning, institutions in Québec are reporting decreased or steady dropout rates between Fall 2019 and Fall 2020. Cégep de Sherbrooke and Cégep de Granby have reported a decrease in dropout rates by 0.75% and 2.15% respectively this term. Bishop’s University has reported no change. Le journal de Montréal reports, however, that the pandemic is having an effect on the mental health of students, with Université de Sherbrooke reporting a 19% increase in its mental health services. Journal de Montréal (QC)

StatCan releases labour market outcome data for PSE graduates

Statistics Canada has released labour market outcome data for college and university graduates from the years 2010 to 2016. The data released includes median employment income for various educational qualifications, fields of study, age groups, genders, and student statuses in Canada. The data also shows the difference in median income among STEM and non-STEM graduates. CBC examined the data specific to PEI and found that two years following graduation, university degree holders in the province earned 12% less than those across Canada. Statistics Canada | CBC (National)

NSERC, UKRI collaborate on quantum technologies program

Canada’s Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and the United Kingdom’s UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) have collaborated on a quantum technologies program, which will see eight projects share a Canadian investment of $4.4M and a UK grant of £2M. The projects will be each taken on by one UK business lead and one Canadian academic lead. The University of Waterloo will co-lead a project on quantum technology in communications networks. Université de Sherbrooke will co-lead a project on the development of microelectric circuits for use in quantum technology. McGill University will co-lead a project that researches how silicon might be used in quantum computing. NSERC (International)

Postsecondary institutions hold innovative convocations due to COVID-19

Postsecondary institutions across Canada are holding convocations in innovative ways to celebrate the graduation of students while prioritizing community safety. Mount Royal University held a drive-in convocation with the help of public health authorities. Those on stage practiced social distancing and the lecterns were sanitized between speakers. Nova Scotia Community College held a virtual ceremony, with credentials mailed to graduates. St. Clair College had seven virtual fall convocation ceremonies which tried to replicate an in-person ceremony. McGill University pre-recorded four convocation ceremonies, which are available on its Virtual Convocation Hub. The University of Prince Edward Island is planning to celebrate its Class of 2020 with its class of 2021, with an in-person convocation that is being planned for May 2021. Calgary Herald | Algonquin Times | I Heart Radio | Halifax Today | McGill | CBC (National)

Halifax Today | McGill | CBC (National)

ACC receives substantial donation for expanding agricultural training

Assiniboine Community College has received a $1M donation from Sunrise Credit Union to support the development of the Prairie Innovation Centre for Sustainable Agriculture. The Centre will enable ACC to expand its enrolment, offer new programming, and help meet the demand for technical and specialized jobs in the Canadian agriculture industry. The college plans to expand the number of students enrolled in agriculture, environment, and agricultural technology from 300 to 800. “The college has long focused on providing leadership in agriculture and this donation is a significant step toward this major undertaking in expanding training to meet current and emerging labour demands,” said ACC president Mark Frison. The Western Producer (MB)

The inappropriate ranking of Canadian universities: Grayson

In a recently published academic article, York University Professor J Paul Grayson takes a look at the Maclean’s magazine rankings and their use of NSSE student satisfaction data. Rather than a definitive hierarchy, Grayson concludes that data used by Maclean’s instead suggests that institutions can be divided into various “satisfaction clusters,” and that there are more similarities between and among Canadian universities than differences. The author urges caution to students and parents who use the rankings to assess the merits of different universities for enrolment decisions, as well as to institutions who may be tempted to “view one’s institution as ahead of the pack” or use the rankings to make policy decisions. Canadian Journal of Higher Education (National)