Newsletter issue: April 2015

Anna Esaki-Smith
Editorial Director
Education Intelligence British Council

Dear colleagues:

 

The spread of transnational education has certainly become a sector focus, and as a result concerted efforts are being made to track and understand this trend. In an upcoming Partnership Access report, we provide an overview of the 2013-2014 UK TNE data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency as well as an analysis of the increase in student numbers from 2007. With much of the growth in students studying UK qualifications outside of the UK coming from Asia, an examination of possible drivers offers welcome insight.

 

Also, we have a skills report coming out that focuses on further education development in the Philippines. To sustain growth and move its economy onto a path that reduces poverty and creates more jobs, the Philippines must match the skills being taught with the skills needed to build a sustainable workforce. Both these reports will be published in May.

 

The British Council's Going Global conference will begin on 1 June in London, and that's where we will launch our third annual Broadening Horizons report on perceived drivers and barriers to overseas study from the perspective of UK and US students. In this month's newsletter, Research Director Zainab Malik provides us with a sneak preview of the report's findings and discusses the importance of outward mobility.

 

Best regards,


Anna Esaki-Smith

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Spotlight - the latest news and views 

 

New research: Revelations and realities 

 

News alerts  

 

Up close and personal with ... 

 

Did you know? 

Spotlight - the latest news and views 

A sneak peek at the new upcoming Broadening Horizons report 

 

In June, the British Council will publish the third annual Broadening Horizons report, an examination of the perceived drivers and barriers to overseas study from the perspective of UK and US students. This year we surveyed nearly 7,500 UK and US students to gauge their sentiment about the prospect of study abroad, and those results have been collected and analysed so that the current landscape can be better understood. Highlights from this year's report will be presented at the British Council's Going Global conference in London on 2 June.

 

In a special preview of the upcoming report, we spoke with Zainab Malik, Director of Research at Education Intelligence, who shared insights into what we can expect.

 


Ten fast facts about Singapore 

 

Greece was in the spotlight for last month's newsletter - this time we go further south to take a closer look at the city-state of Singapore where you can find the national anthem in microtext on the back of the $1000 note (if you can ever get your hands on this big buck!).

 


New research: Revelations and realities 

Access updated country profiles in the 2015 Country Brief series 

 

The Country Brief series is one of the most popular in the Education Intelligence research portfolio. The reports are refreshed annually to ensure they are up-to-date and reliable. In addition to providing a window into a country's education system, a Country Brief also presents a wider view of society and examines factors influencing international education. Content includes macro-economic and socio-economic indicators, educational expenditure, analyses of local education system and education demands. New and enhanced sections on local media overview and transnational education also feature.

 

There will be a total of 42 new reports in the 2015 series. The first eight reports covering Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Nigeria, Singapore and the US are now available.

News alerts  

English skills a key for mobility and employment in the Middle East and North Africa 

 

The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region has a young population but also high youth unemployment rates. A growing body of research is pointing to the link between economic advancement and English language proficiency and, for the MENA region in particular, improved English language skills are seen to be vital to improving employment prospects for youth.

 


How social media helps students adapt to college 

 

For today's students, social media isn't just a diversion, it's a support system. That's the key finding of a paper exploring the role of social networking in helping students adjust to campus life and creating a broader sense of belonging. 

 


Why getting a liberal education matters 

 

"An open-ended exploration of knowledge is seen as a road to nowhere," writes journalist and author Fareed Zakaria in his book, In Defense of a Liberal Education. Earning a degree in a subject such as English literature is no longer viewed in an overwhelmingly positive light and far fewer students are pursuing liberal arts degrees than they were decades ago. But Zakaria says we need the liberal arts more than ever in today's digital world.

 


Are master's degrees on their way out? Alternatives grow as enrolment fades 

 

The Washington Post reports that graduate degrees and professional certificates have been the fastest-growing segment of higher education in recent years. The thinking has always been that when the economy improves, fewer people go back to school for such credentials because they can more easily get jobs instead. But that may not be the reality.

 


Colleges turning to Internet for intel on applicants 

 

A growing number of college admissions officers are turning to the Internet to verify information and to learn more about college applicants, according to a recent survey. Student activity on social networking sites can be evaluated and, in turn, influence decisions about university acceptance. 

 

Up close and personal with ... Tony Johnson 

This month we talk with Tony Johnson, President of The Academic Internship Council (AIC), a non-profit focused on global internships that recently merged with the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE).

 

Tony has worked in international internships since 1984 and has helped launch internship sites in twelve cities around the globe. He has been responsible for placing over 30,000 students in international internships. Educated at Haileybury College and Thames Valley University, Tony currently lives in Canada and, in our interview, waxes lyrical about politics, birdwatching and triplets.

 

What is your favourite conference and why?
I know that I am biased, but it has to be the Global Internship Conference, which is being held at University College, Dublin from June 9-12, 2015. I have been fortunate enough to chair the GIC for the last three years, and I know how hard it is to bring consistency and fairness to the world of work placements. GIC is not afraid to grasp some pretty strong nettles, such as the paid versus unpaid work placement debate, or the failure of many governments to have balanced and understandable student visa policies.
What is your current country of interest and why?
Can I go for two - Singapore and Hong Kong? These are two of the Academic Internship Council's newest venues for internship programs, and they are fascinatingly similar and yet dramatically different. They are both commercial and finance hubs that punch way above their size and weight, and both are gateways for businesses and students to discover Asia through a shared British heritage that is still tangible. However their diverse political and social backdrops give a completely different experience to our students who come to intern and study in these two wonderful locations.
What is your greatest challenge?
Since the merger with CIEE in September, our greatest challenge has been managing our expansion. It is very exciting to have the opportunity to create an international matrix of student internships. For example we recently placed a young man from Mozambique, studying at an Australian University, into an NGO internship in India. We are already running programmes in four North American and three Asian cities, and are looking at having more opportunities very soon. Cape Town, Berlin, Istanbul and Amman are among the latest city additions to our internship lineup.
What keeps you up at night?
Four children, including a set of triplets, has done a pretty good job over the years. Even though the triplets are now in their twenties and away at university, they still find ways to keep us awake at night!
What's your guilty pleasure?
Whenever I travel for business or pleasure, which is a lot, I always carve out a dawn or dusk diversion on the trip to go birdwatching. I have managed to observe over 750 different species including Gyrfalcons in the Arctic, White-tailed Eagles in Poland, and even the Seychelles Brush Warbler, of which there are only about 15 left! South American red wine and wonderfully spicy Asian cuisine would probably have been a cooler response, but too late - the nerdy side got in first.

Did you know? 

...that the largest share of tertiary students in Azerbaijan (25.5 per cent) studied education in 2013 - 2014 while 21.9 per cent studied economics and management courses and 21.6 per cent studied technical programmes?

 

Find out more from our Country Brief series.