In fall 2015, overall postsecondary enrollments decreased 1.7 percent from the previous fall. Figure 1 shows the 12-month percentage change (fall-to-fall and spring-to-spring) for each term over the last three years. Enrollments decreased among fouryear for-profit institutions (-13.7 percent), two-year public institutions (-2.4 percent), and four-year private nonprofit institutions (-0.3 percent). Enrollments increased slightly among four-year public institutions (+0.4 percent). Taken as a whole, public sector enrollment (2-year and 4-year combined) declined by 2.3 percent this fall.
Should copyright law lock down music and literature to protect the ﬁnancial interests of rights-holders? Or should it promote broad access to, and use of, intellectual goods? These questions are at the core of the growing public debate over the need for fair and balanced copyright law, a debate that college and university students have a critical stake in. As creators and owners of copyright material (essays, articles, theses and multi-media productions), students need to protect their work from unjust appropriation. But to study, research, write and create new knowledge, students also need ready access, at a reasonable cost, to the copyrighted works of others. This tri-part perspective—of use, creation and ownership of copyright—gives students special credibility in the struggle for fair and balanced copyright law.
In recent years, students have been paying more to attend college and earning less upon graduation—trends that have led many observers to question whether a college education remains a good investment. However, an analysis of the economic returns to college since the 1970s demonstrates that the benefits of both a bachelor’s degree and an associate’s degree still tend to outweigh the costs, with both degrees earning a return of about 15 percent over the past decade. The return has remained high in spite of rising tuition and falling earnings because the wages of those without a college degree have also been falling, keeping the college wage premium near an all-time high while reducing the opportunity cost of going to school.
Immigration is a major driver of Canada’s population growth.1 Over the last century, millions of men, women, and children have travelled from abroad to work, study, and live in Canada. Those who are granted the right to live in Canada permanently comprise Canada’s immigrant population. In 2014, it is estimated that over 260,000 people immigrated to Canada.2,3 These newcomers form a diverse group, contributing to the country’s richly multicultural character. In recent decades, changing trends in immigration have shifted the demographic characteristics of the immigrant population in Canada. This chapter explores these trends from a gender-based perspective.
A large majority of first-time international graduate students are master’s and certificate students. • Over three-fourths (77%) of first-time international graduate students in Fall 2015 were enrolled in master’s and certificate programs; however, shares vary by country/region of origin and field of study. • First-time Indian (91%) and Saudi Arabian (80%) graduate students were most likely to pursue master’s and certificate programs, while South Korean (47%) graduate students were most likely to pursue doctoral programs.
It’s no secret that high youth unemployment and record high debt levels mean youth in Canada are facing a difficult future. While the economy continues on a slow recovery, students and youth are being left behind through decreased program funding, ineffective employment plans, and a lack of federal strategies.
Over the last five years, high youth unemployment has been a constant challenge in the Canadian labour market. Attainment of a post-secondary education has become a prerequisite for participation in Canada’s workforce. It’s time for Canada to prioritise youth employment. We have looked abroad to find solutions, and Germany’s Dual Vocational Training System is a plan that values the work of youth and has long-term rewards for the economy and society. Publicly funded, and with no tuition fees, Germany serves as a model for us in Canada on how to build a thriving economy that values workers.
Over the past year Canadians have borne witness to some of the greatest economic uncertainty in our history. As the global economy fell into a deep recession, many Canadians were laid off or unable to continue to work full-time, while others left the labour market, retiring early or heading back to school.
In hard times Canadians look to their government for leadership. In response to this demand the federal government embarked on one of the most expensive spending programs in Canada’s history. The 2009 budget included over $50 billion in stimulus spending. Despite this massive investment–arguably the biggest re-engagement of the federal government in decades–there was nothing offered to make college and university more affordable or help the thousands of students and graduates with mortgagesized debt loads.
In order to redress the legacy of residential schools and advance the process of Canadian reconciliation, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission makes the following calls to action.
Students from a number of groups remain underrepresented in Ontario’s universities and colleges, including low-income students, Aboriginal students, first generation students whose parents did not attend a post-secondary institution, rural and northern students, and students with dependants. Improving access to higher education for these and other underrepresented groups is widely acknowledged as essential to building a more equitable society and to competing in the increasingly knowledgebased economy. Indeed, Premier McGuinty has stated his desire to see 70 per cent of Ontarians complete post-secondary education, and achieving this target will require a concerted effort to reduce participation gaps.
Since 1977, we’ve been recommending that graduate departments partake in birth control, but no one has been listening,” said Paula Stephan to more than 200 postdocs and PhD students at a symposium in Boston, Massachusetts, in October this year. Stephan is a renowned labour economist at Georgia State University in Atlanta who has spent much of her career trying to understand the relationships between economics and science, particularly biomedical science. And the symposium, ‘Future of Research’, discussed the issue to which Stephan finds so many people deaf: the academic research system is generating progeny at a startling rate. In biomedicine, said Stephan. “We are definitely producing many more PhDs than there is demand for them in research positions.”
While it requires a significant amount of time and persistence, completing a PhD is not now – nor has it ever been – a guaranteed path to a lucrative end, and its general value has come under increasing scrutiny in recent years. This paper is written for aspiring doctoral students, current doctoral students or candidates, recent doctoral graduates, as well as their families and friends. It provides detailed information about the evolution of the PhD and of the broader labour market and educational environment in which it is embedded. The analyses provided in this paper also lead to recommendations to government and institutions about PhD programs. The paper:
1. provides a detailed explanation of the PhD as an academic credential; 2. outlines the expectations that accompany admission to a doctoral program; 3. chronicles the recent rise in doctoral enrolments in Ontario universities; 4. explores the various labour market pathways available to doctoral graduates; 5. offers recommendations to doctoral candidates, graduate programs and governments.
This article examines regional differences in the math and reading skills of immigrant children aged 15 based on data from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). It also examines regional differences in high-school and university completion rates among young immigrants who came to Canada before the age of 15 using National Household Survey (NHS) data. Throughout the article, comparisons are made with the children of the Canadian-born (third- or higher-generation Canadians). In Canada, the average PISA math score of immigrant students aged 15 was similar to the score of third- or higher-generation students. The average PISA reading score of immigrant children was slightly lower than the score of third- or higher-generation children. In almost all regions, immigrant students had lower PISA reading scores than third- or higher-generation students. With respect to PISA math scores, immigrant students performed better than third- or higher-generation students in the Atlantic provinces and British Colombia, but performed less well in Quebec and in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Young immigrants aged 20 to 24 were more likely to have a high school diploma than their third- or higher-generation counterparts (93% versus 87%). Young immigrants aged 25 to 29 were also more likely to have a university degree (40%, compared with 26% of third- or higher-generation individuals in this age group). Manitoba and Saskatchewan (29%) and Quebec (32%) had the lowest proportions of immigrants aged 25 to 29 with a university degree. In contrast, British Columbia (44%) and Ontario (41%) had the highest proportions. Regional differences in the source countries of immigrants explained, in part, why some regions had higher university completion rates than others.
Background/Context: Research indicates that across democratic societies, teachers face numerous intellectual and emotional challenges when handling controversial topics in the classroom. Less attention, however, has been paid to how teachers’ willingness to teach controversial topics intersects with political and other societal factors in different sociopolitical milieu and, in particular, in an authoritarian–democratic and culturally diverse state like Singapore. Focus of Study: This study focused on constraints to the teaching of controversial topics relating to diversity and the manner in which teachers navigated their personal beliefs amidst the evolving contours of public and official discourses in Singapore. By attending to the intersections of teachers’ beliefs, state policies, and other sociopolitical factors, we aimed to inform scholarship on the teaching of controversial topics and illuminate states’ powers to demarcate the discursive spaces of teachers.
Governments are increasingly looking to international comparisons of education opportunities and outcomes as they develop policies to enhance individuals’ social and economic prospects, provide incentives for greater efficiency in schooling, and help to mobilise resources to meet rising demands. The OECD Directorate for Education and Skills contributes to these efforts by developing and analysing the quantitative, internationally comparable indicators that it publishes annually in Education at a Glance. Together with OECD country policy reviews, these indicators can be used to assist governments in building more effective and equitable education systems. Education at a Glance addresses the needs of a range of users, from governments seeking to learn policy lessons to academics requiring data for further analysis to the general public wanting to monitor how its country’s schools are progressing in producing world-class students. The publication examines the quality of learning outcomes, the policy levers and contextual factors that shape these outcomes, and the broader private and social returns that accrue to investments in education.
In this study, we compared the effects of a traditional teaching assistant (TA) training program to those of a specialized program, with a substantial intercultural component, for international graduate students. We expected both programs to result in an increase in international graduate students’ teaching self-efficacy, observed teaching effectiveness, and adoption of student-centred approaches to teaching, and we anticipated a greater degree of change for the participants in the specialized program. We found the expected increases for graduate students in both programs, with a larger increase in observed teaching effectiveness for students in the specialized program. We discuss the implications of tailoring TA training programs for international graduate students and of providing time and learning activities for the development of student-centred teaching and reflective practice.
This paper presents preliminary findings from a pilot study whose purpose was to explore how we, a tenure-track faculty member and a doctoral student, understood and developed our teaching practice when engaged in a formal faculty–student relationship. Using a hybrid of collaborative inquiry and collaborative self-study—which included verbal and written dialogue, interrogation, as well as observation—we sought to understand how that formal faculty–student relationship promoted the development of strong teaching pedagogy. The motivation for this study was a commitment to fostering highquality teaching in undergraduate courses in our faculty of education. Driving this study was the research question: How are we investigating and improving upon our practices as teachers in post-secondary education?
Dalhousie University’s Centre for Learning and Teaching offers a Certificate in University Teaching and Learning, which includes a 12-week course entitled Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. This course provides the certificate’s theory component and has evolved to reflect the changing needs of future educators. One significant change is the development of a blended course model that incorporates graded online facilitation, prompted by the recognition that teaching assistants and faculty are increasingly required to teach online or blended (i.e., combining face-to-face and online) courses. This study invited graduate students enrolled in the course to participate in pre- and post-facilitation questionnaires that assessed their awareness, competence, confidence, and attitudes towards online and blended learning. Students recognized the value of the online component for future teaching expertise and experienced increased awareness, competence, and confidence regarding teaching online. However, preference for face-to-face teaching and student learning did not change.
This paper presents the findings of a mixed-method case study conducted at the University of Guelph on the relationship between practice lecturing and graduate student self-efficacy. Building on the work of Boman (2013), and using surveys and individual interviews, we measured and characterized the perceived changes in graduate students’ self-efficacy in learner-centred lecturing. Our research question was: In what ways, if any, does microteaching contribute to participants’ perceived self-efficacy in learner-centred lecturing? Our results and discussion reveal that practice increases self-efficacy with respect to the design, facilitation, and assessment of learner-centred lectures, and is a vital component to graduate student teaching development programming
Increasingly, graduate teaching assistants serve as the primary instructors in undergraduate courses, yet research has shown that training and development for these teaching assistants is often lacking in programs throughout the United States and Canada. Providing mentoring and skill development opportunities for graduate teaching assistants is vital, as many will become the next generation of faculty. This paper discusses the literature on effective training programs, which underscores the importance of consistent feedback from mentors, intrinsic motivation, and practical applications. Afterwards, we examine an existing training program at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Specifically, we focus on an institute for teaching assistants that helps graduate students understand applied learning as an effective pedagogical modality and helps them implement applied learning lesson plans tailored to their disciplines. Suggestions for strengthening training programs are discussed.
Graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) occupy a unique position in teaching and learning in higher education. Typically, individuals arrive at graduate school already socialized into disciplinary ways of knowing. GTA pedagogical professional development offers opportunities for GTAs to engage with current “best practices” and different pedagogical ways of knowing, and to initiate new and innovative practices. Research has demonstrated that as content knowledge and expertise develop, experienced instructors do not always recognize the ways that their expertise (e.g., how they organize materials or knowledge) can interfere with student learning (Ambrose, Bridges, DiPietro, Lovett, & Norman, 2010). GTAs are therefore well positioned to scaffold learning for content novices such as undergraduate students. The teaching preparation and pedagogical development of GTAs is not just a resource to support learning; in fact, the teaching and instructional skills that GTAs acquire can be transferred to professional domains outside academia (Osborne, Carpenter, Burnett, Rolheiser, & Korpan, 2014; Rose, 2012). GTA professional development has never been just training to fulfill a particular niche or to achieve a singular goal such as teaching; however, the current post-secondary climate of accountability and quality enhancement does bring the goals and purposes of GTA professional development into view.