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Curated content on higher education presented by the Society for College and University Planning (SCUP).
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Places of Higher Learning Expand Up, Not Out

Places of Higher Learning Expand Up, Not Out | SCUP Links | Scoop.it
Two-storey addition on top of Thompson Rivers University building gives B.C. law school sweeping style and space
Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Using some additional examples, this also explores the growth in "vertical campuses," in Canada.

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Editorial: Three-year bachelor's degree has merits | USA Today w/Opposing View

Editorial: Three-year bachelor's degree has merits | USA Today w/Opposing View | SCUP Links | Scoop.it
The latest in our Ideas From Afar series, this time from Canada.


USA Today thinks 3-year degrees are a good idea.


In Three-Year Degree is Not a SolutionDaniel J. Hurley, director of state relations and policy analysis for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) disagrees.

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In conversation: UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau – Macleans OnCampus

In conversation: UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau – Macleans OnCampus | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

UC Berkeley chancellor stepping down. He's a former U of Toronto president. He's interviewed in Macleans On Campus, covering a broad range of issues about the UC system, Canadian higher education, and the challenges of the chancellor's roll. Planners will find it worth a quick read.


"Q: Just how bad did it get at Berkeley?


A: When I arrived there was a commitment from the government that our funding for paying faculty and staff salaries would go up four to five per cent a year. If that compact had held we would have $600 million this year. In fact, we have $240 million. So in five years, we’ve lost more than half of our money from the government to pay those salaries.


Q: How did you bridge that shortfall?


A: We were not naive about the budget. We whined somewhat, but we also knuckled down and said, “Okay, we need a comprehensive financial strategy.” I was president of U of T for four years, and I learned a lot. Some of the good management practices we introduced at Berkeley we had already introduced in Toronto.


Q: What did you borrow from U of T?


A: One thing is that every large institution like Berkeley and the U of T always has a large amount of money sitting waiting to be spent. Typically these amounts were of the order of [$750 million] to a billion dollars, and they’re sitting in accounts yielding the lowest interest rate. In Toronto we realized we were wasting money and began aggressively investing about half—$400 million or so. We introduced that at Berkeley and ended up generating an additional $30 million to $40 million a year in income."

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Why Alberta’s education system is better – - Macleans OnCampus

"Alberta is as a maverick when it comes to higher education. The province prepares students for post-secondary better than its neighbors, has some of the country’s most satisfied students and punches above its weight in research.


Now there’s even more evidence that the rest of Canada should pay attention to how Wild Rose Country approaches higher education."


  • Public funding of universities is highest in Alberta. Statistics Canada says that 72 per cent of funding for Alberta universities came from public sources in 2009. The next highest was Newfoundland at 69 per cent. It was only 49 per cent in Nova Scotia.
  • Alberta has two teaching-focused universities that work. Grant MacEwan and Mount Royal Univeristy have faculty who spend most of their days teaching, rather than conducting research—unlike nearly every university east of Edmonton. And both institutions score exceptionally well on the National Survey of Student Engagement. When asked “if you could start over, would go to the institution you are now attending?,” 50 per cent of Mount Royal seniors and 60 per cent of Grant MacEwan seniors said yes. The average is just 45 per cent.


More at the title link.

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