Test of Professional English Gets Trial Run
The test, which includes listening, speaking, reading and writing components, gauges a candidate’s knowledge of business English. It was designed as a human resources tool for companies and governments competing in the global arena.
ETS will first launch the TOPE in China next year and then introduce it throughout the Asia-Pacific region and the rest of the world. The test will be scheduled four or five times a year.
According to official statistics there were 387 colleges and universities in China in 1996; however, by 2000, mergers had reduced that number to 212. Faculty:student ratios have also dropped to 1:14.
London, Shanghai Schools Launch Executive Program
The program was launched in response to China’s entry into the World Trade Organization and because the country needs to nurture top management personnel with knowledge of international economic and banking environments.
London officials involved in the project say the program will not only help establish close ties between London and Shanghai, but also greatly promote economic exchanges between China and Great Britain.
Agreement OKs Academic Exchange
Guizhou University of Technology and Dakota State University
(DSU) have agreed on a reciprocal exchange of two to four members of each school’s faculty for research and learning. The two schools will also cooperate in creating distance education links using the campus network and Internet to benefit on-campus U.S. and Chinese students.
Software College Opens in Shandong Province
Qilu Software College was unveiled recently in Jinan, capital of Shandong province. The college, designed to accommodate 10,000 students, is part of the country’s drive to increase the number of home-grown technology experts.
Through an affiliation with Shandong University
, the college will offer computer software courses.
UGC Declares 18 Institutions Illegal
Maithili University, Darbanhga (Bihar province); Mahila Gram Vidyapeeth, Prayag, Allahabad (UP); Varanasi Sanskrit College, Varanasi (UP); JagatPuri, Delhi; Commercial University Limited, Daryaganj, Delhi; Indian Education Council of UP, Lucknow (UP); Gandhi Hindi Vidyapeeth, Prayag, Allahabad (UP); Natejaji Subash Chandra Bose University (Open University), Achaltall, Aligarh (UP); DDB Sanskrit University, Putoor Trichi (Tamilnadu); St. John’s University, Kisanatyam, Kerala; United National University, Delhi; Uttar Pradesh University, Kosikala, Mathura (UP); Mahrana Pratap Shiksha Niketan University, Pratapgarh (UP); Rja Arbik University, Nagpur; Keshravani Vidyapeeth, Jabalpur (MP); Delhi Vishav Vidyapeeth, Tagore Park, Model Town, Delhi; Badarganavi Sarkar World Open University Education Society, Gokak, Beilgaon (Karnataka); Bhartiya Shiksha Parisad UP, Lucknow; National University of Electro Complex Homeopathy, Kanpur; and Vocational University, Delhi.
Bangalore-Ohio Master’s Program to Begin in June
The Bangalore-based Asian Business School has teamed up with the College of Health and Human Services at Ohio University
to introduce a postgraduate degree in master of health administration.
The two educational institutions signed a “memorandum of understanding” on Nov. 8, 2002. Forty students will enroll in the first program, which will begin classes in June 2003. The program is to be a full-time, 18-month course and includes an internship. Students will have an option to complete two quarters at Ohio University.
Joint Venture Global MBA Launched
Indian students will undertake the first five months of the course in India at IMT and the second half at FDU. Of the 27 credits taken in the United States, six will be covered by a six-month paid internship.
Students who successfully complete the course will graduate with an FDU MBA and an IMT postgraduate diploma. The program commences in August 2003.
‘Education India’ to Host Student Recruitment Events
Two three-day exhibitions in Mumbai and New Delhi will give home-based and international educational suppliers a chance to showcase their institutions and products to the huge Indian market of prospective postsecondary students.
The Mumbai event, which will include a one-day conference on “Borderless Education,” will be March 29-31, 2003 at the Nehru Center.
The New Delhi event will take place April 3-5, 2003 at the Pragati Maiden and includes a conference on “Education in the Emerging Knowledge Society.”
Panel Seeks to Add Patriotic Terms to ‘Education Constitution’
The concepts of patriotism and cultural awareness, not contained in the 1947 Fundamental Law of Education, are likely to be added to the de facto “Education Constitution.”
The Central Council for Education, a government advisory panel, in a draft report is recommending amendments to the law that will allow children to bolster their Japanese identity and acquire “love for the nation and respect for tradition and culture of our country.” The draft also states the current law’s emphasis on self-esteem and peace should be maintained.
Those in favor of the revisions point out that the current law lacks indispensable principles such as patriotism and respect for tradition. The concept of patriotism was not included in the 1947 law due to strong pressure from U.S. Occupation powers, which also ordered that “tradition” be omitted.
The draft is regarded skeptically by some, who fear the term “patriotism” could lead to accusations of ethnocentrism. Concerns raised in subcommittee meetings have noted that nationalism under the guise of patriotism once led Japan to war.
The ministry has said it hopes to submit a bill to the Diet in 2003.
Controversy Erupts Over English-Immersion Plan
Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has proposed an education revolution that would see all elementary school-level mathematics and science instruction in English. The proposal comes as part of his package to improve standards of English, mathematics and science to make Malaysia more competitive globally.
This proposal is proving to be a hot political potato, causing rifts within Mohamad’s multi-ethnic National Front coalition and bringing unity to opposition parties.
The idea was first aired a few months ago, but real controversy erupted in August, when the prime minister announced that he wanted to introduce his proposal in 2003. He hopes to propel Malaysian university students to the cutting edge of international education as quickly as possible.
Arguments against Mohamad’s policy come from many quarters, with probably the loudest critics being the Chinese community, who argue the plan will dilute the cultural identity of the Chinese education community and at the same time lower education standards.
Another common criticism is that the proposal is elitist, because the majority of Malaysians will not be able to handle the change, as English-language proficiency is inadequate. Many see it as discriminatory against rural communities and do not understand why, if English is the problem, mathematics and science have to be dragged into it.
Among the alternative solutions that have been voiced, the most popular is the call for a one-year delay in the plan. Another alternative is to have the plan implemented at the secondary-school level — not the primary level.
Prominent Colleges Ordered Shut
Malaysia is struggling with the competitive education marketplace that it has created, and quality seems to be suffering as a consequence. Recently, two prominent colleges, Brickfields College
and Nirwana Institute, were ordered shut for running courses that had not been approved by the Private Education Department, thereby breaching regulations under the Private Higher Educational Institutions Act of 1996.
The government has closed 26 private colleges, including Institut Mestika Kulim (formerly known as Institute Teknologi Midas) in Kedah; Institut Makanan, Kelana Jaya branch in Petaling Jaya and Institut Teknologi
Former Prime Minister to Build Education Exports
One-time schoolteacher and former Prime Minister Jenny Shipley is back working in education. Rather than returning to the classroom, Shipley will be instrumental in developing the exports of New Zealand’s educational services, particularly to China.
The former politician has accepted a position with The Cambridge Group, an executive search and business development consultancy with offices in New Zealand, Australia, the United Kingdom, India and Asia. Shipley’s role with the group will include brokering deals to get local educational institutions established in Asia. The connections she developed as prime minister make her the ideal candidate for such a position.
Her appointment comes at a time of an increasing Chinese thirst to import Western education, as the government has put great weight on English-language learning over the last 10 years. Demand far exceeds supply at almost every point, which provides New Zealand with a great opportunity to build its already booming education market. New Zealand earns about NZ$1.5 billion (US$ 750 million) a year from educational services, and Shipley says she considers Prime Minister Helen Clark’s prediction that the sector could double to NZ$3 billion (US$ 1.5 billion)”quite conservative.”
Denmark, UK Schools Plan Virtual IT University
Denmark’s Selandia College
and the University of Central Lancashire
are collaborating in a European-funded project to create a virtual university in Pakistan, specializing in information technology. The project is scheduled for completion in March 2004.
REPUBLIC of KOREA
3 UK Universities Join Forces to Market Programs
The universities of Manchester
have opened an office in Seoul to jointly market their courses to Korean students.
The move comes in an attempt to lure Korean students away from U.S. institutions, traditionally the first choice for students wishing to study abroad.
Shanghai University Opens Graduate School
The SJTU Graduate School at NTU’s Nanyang Business School will conduct SJTU’s MBA program, which will be taught in both Chinese and English by professors from both institutions.
This is the first overseas endeavor of its kind to be approved by the Chinese Ministry of Education. SJTU is the first Asian institution and the ninth international university to house a school in Singapore.
Campus Shut Down as Hazing Advocates Kill Student
A student who was objecting to the practice of hazing at Sri Lankan universities died Nov. 8 after being attacked by a group of students who want to continue the fraternity-style abuse of freshmen. The Senate of the University of Sri Jayewardenepura
, where the incident happened, met and decided to shut the university indefinitely.
The student was killed as he met with the director of student welfare to complain about the practice, known as “ragging.” The hazing ritual typically involves starving and beating students, as well as having them perform embarrassing sexual acts.
Located on the outskirts of capital city Colombo, the university is one of Sri Lanka’s major institutions of higher education. The school with 7,000 students has previously experienced clashes between groups that advocate ragging and those that oppose it.