WENR Regional News, 2016: Africa
Kenya: 10 campus closures; audits of dozens more
In response to allegations of rampant cheating and “rogue colleges and universities,” Kenya’s Commission for University Education (CUE) shuttered 10 campuses of one of the country’s fastest growing public universities, Kisii University. CUE is auditing all public universities. The commission put more than a dozen campuses on notice, giving them 90 days to address issues uncovered by the audit. The audit was sparked by employer concerns about the quality of recent graduates and by revelations that hundreds of tertiary institutions were operating illegally. Only eleven institutions were operating legally. Leading professional bodies have also taken action; the Engineers Board of Kenya, for example, accredited only 29 out of 67 engineering degrees offered by public institutions.
University World News
Nigeria: Student interest in U.K. down; up in U.S. and Canada
Interest in U.K. schools plummeted by 65 percent among Nigerian students from 2014 to 2015. The finding was released by StudySearch, a university application platform that serves international students from Africa. It was based on student enquiries. During the same period, Nigerian interest in North American schools rose by 30 percent. StudySearch fielded 30,000 enquiries from students around the world in 2015; seventy-nine percent were from Nigeria. An additional eight percent came from other African nations, including Ghana, Kenya, South Africa and Uganda.
The PIE News
Regional: Escalating ‘brain drain’ as students head abroad
One in nine Africans with a tertiary education—2.9 million people—live in Europe, North America or elsewhere, according to 2013 figures from the World Bank. That number represents not only a significant ‘brain drain’ but an escalation that’s unique: Africa has seen 50 percent growth in these numbers in 10 years, far outstripping other global regions. Students interested in higher education are also leaving, many bound for the U.S., which is the top choice for potential students from Sub-Saharan Africa. As of 2014, there were 31,113 students from sub-Saharan Africa in the U.S., four percent of the country’s overall international student population. The top sub-Saharan African countries of origin are Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, Cameroon, and Ethiopia.
London School of Economics Blog
Regional: New tools to provide transparency and tracking for research funding
The recently formed Alliance for Accelerating Excellence in Science in Africa (AESA), is launching a new initiative to develop pan-African standards for managing donor research funds in universities, research institutions and governments. The initiative seeks to spearhead a unified approach to addressing financial management challenges faced by both funders and fund recipients in Africa. The solution they’ve identified is technological: A web-based financial management assessment tool will support self-assessments by recipients, and provide funders with a searchable database of those assessments. A draft standard is expected to be complete in mid-2016. The standard is expected to be fully implemented by late 2017.
December 11, 2015
University World News