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Welfare Reform on the Web (June 2011): Education - UK - higher

British Labour and higher education, 1945 to 2000: ideologies, policies and practice

R. Taylor and T. Steele

London: Continuum, 2011

Higher education provision is an essential component (socially as well as economically) of modern social structures. British Labour and Higher Education focuses on the development of Labour policy on higher education from 1945 to 2000. It analyses the rapid expansion and series of fundamental transformations in higher education and Labour's part in both shaping and reacting to them. The authors explore the historical evolution and Labour's varying policy initiatives in the period, and question the place higher education has occupied in the various strands of Labour ideology. As always with 'Labourism', perspectives are contentious and contested, spanning the centralist 'Fabians', the liberal moralists, and the socialist left. How far, if at all, have Labour's policy stances in this area confronted the elite social reproduction functions of universities or the instrumentalist needs of corporate capitalism? Has this policy evolution given concrete evidence to support Ralph Miliband's pessimistic assessment of 'Labourism' as a political formation structurally unable to confront capitalist social structures, or to see a viable 'Third Way', as advocated by New Labour?

Educational marketing: a review and implications for supporting practice in tertiary education

C.A. Stachowski

Educational Management Administration & Leadership, vol. 39, 2011, p. 186-204

This article reviews the existing educational marketing literature in the leading tertiary educational management journals. A discussion of the implications for supporting practitioners in non-university settings is presented.

Extra places at university for rich students

J. Vasagar

The Guardian, May 10th 2011, p. 1

Teenagers from the wealthiest families would be able to pay for extra places at some of the most competitive universities under government's plans to charge some British students the same high fees as overseas undergraduates. The proposals come as the government is to cut 10,000 publicly funded places.

Senior academics warn of impact on scientific research and teaching

I. Sample

The Guardian, May 12th 2011, p. 11

Scientists will be forced to share laboratories more often and find extra money for basic equipment as funding cuts hit research. Savage cuts to hardware and facilities budgets will transform scientific research in the UK, with top-end equipment concentrated ever more in elite universities and government centres, and other researchers striking deals to gain access to the facilities.

Student visas

Home Affairs Committee

London: TSO, 2011 (House of Commons papers, session 2010/12; HC 773)

The international student market is estimated to be worth 40 billion to the UK economy. Education is a growth market and the UK is the second most popular destination in the world for international students. The current review of the student immigration system is part of a concerted effort by the Government to reduce net migration figures. The committee agrees that any cap on student visas could seriously damage the UK's higher education industry and international reputation. It fully supports the Government in seeking to eliminate bogus colleges and deterring bogus students from even attempting to enter the UK. While the Government has stated that it does not wish to target legitimate students, it should not introduce measures which could be detrimental to a thriving, successful industry.

Tories act to quell row over university places

R. Garner and R. Hastings

The Independent, May 11th 2011, p.12

The article reports that the PM was forced to deny that the Government had any plans to offer extra places to study at elite universities to students who could afford to pay the full, non-home or EU student fees. The idea had been floated by universities minister David Willetts; it hinted at the possibility of creating extra places at top universities to be offered to students who could afford to pay full fees for them. Such students would not be eligible for student loans or for help with living and accommodation costs. The extra funds would then be used to fund places for 'ordinary' students. The proposal was strongly criticised, with many arguing that this would mean wealthy students would be able to 'buy' a place at university.

Tuition fee bargains await students who seek last-minute places

R. Garner and O. Wright

The Independent, May 12th 2011, p.1

The article reveals that universities minister, David Willetts, suggested that students could get a last-minute discount on university courses or incentives, such as free ipads, as universities tried to fill vacant places during clearing. The idea has been fiercely criticised and accused of being unfair: it could lead to a situation where students on the same course could have paid different fees. Critics also say that the proposal might lead to prospective students remaining without a university place as they waited to see if the university of their choice lowered fees, a problem more likely to affect poorer applicants.

University guide 2012: university league table

J. Shepherd and S. Rogers

The Guardian, May 17th 2011

The latest Guardian University Guide tables show that Cambridge University has taken the top spot, breaking its arch-rival Oxford's six-year stint as the UK's leading institution. Oxford has come second and St Andrews third, while the London School of Economics has climbed four places from last year to take fourth place. University College London, Warwick, Lancaster, Durham, Loughborough and Imperial College make up the top 10. The tables are based on data for full-time undergraduates at UK universities.


Universities slam Willetts' 'cut-price' degree scheme

S. Morrison

The Independent, May 13th 2011, p.10

The universities minister, David Willetts, has received strong criticism following his proposal that universities might be allowed to give late applicants last minute discounts on fees, in an effort to fill empty places. David Green, vice-chancellor of the University of Worcester, has accused Mr. Willetts of 'commodifying' university education. Sally Hunt, general secretary of the University and College Union, said Mr. Willetts' proposal amounted to a tacit admission that the Government's reforms of higher education are unfair.

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