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Chronicle of Higher Education: How Much Coronavirus Stimulus Money Will Your College Get? Take a Look

The Education Department has released new information about how most of the direct funding to colleges would be divvied up. Locate your college in this sortable table.

Top study destinations divided on COVID-19 financial support for int’l students

The PIE News - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 10:19

Last week, Canada announced that international students will be included in measures to help those who lose their jobs as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. Like citizens of the country, they will be able to apply for temporary income support of up to CAN$500 a week for up to sixteen weeks provided they meet certain criteria.

International students and the agencies that advocate for them in many popular study destinations have been asking their governments to provide financial assistance in cases where students have lost their part-time job due to coronavirus and struggling to afford rent and daily necessities without a source of income.

“If you are having difficulties in paying your bills for any reason, talk to your education provider”

While most countries have relaxed certain visa regulations and school attendance requirements for international students, many are hesitant to provide further financial support for international students, arguing that – at the very least for first-year students – the ability to support oneself financially is a requirement of obtaining a study visa.

This debate has played out most prominently in Australia where the prime minister said there would be no support for international students.

While agencies continue to push for this to change, international students have since been granted access to their superannuation (pension) funds, which are usually only accessible after leaving the country, if they need them. The city of Melbourne has also pledged to create a fund for international students.

In the cases of countries where international students have been given some sort of financial support, such as New Zealand and Canada, they have been incorporated into measures for citizens as opposed to being treated as a separate category.

Yet the three biggest destinations for international students – the US, the UK and China – are as of yet not providing financial support for students at a government level, although in the case of the UK and US, some universities are providing support through hardship funds.

Students are encouraged to ask universities directly about these services as they are often not advertised.

“If you are having difficulties in paying your bills for any reason, talk to your education provider and, if relevant, to your accommodation provider,” UKCISA said in its online guidelines for international students.

“Both have been instructed by the UK government to exercise flexibility if you cannot afford to pay your tuition fees, rent or other expenses.”

The lack of response has left organisations worried about the impact of host nations not being supportive of international students will have on the future desirability of the country as a study destination.

“We recognise there is a global competition for talent, and prospective international students will surely look at how countries reacted to COVID-19 when deciding where to apply,” Jill Allen Murray, deputy executive director public policy at NAFSA, told The PIE News.

“Allowing for flexibility in adjudication requests and status determinations during this global crisis will send a strong message that the United States welcomes and values international students, even in times of uncertainty.”

China, the world’s third-largest study destination, generally doesn’t allow international students to work. However, reports have surfaced of some losing their accommodation due to the coronavirus outbreak in recent days.

“Prospective international students will surely look at how countries reacted to COVID-19 when deciding where to apply”

In China’s southern city of Guangzhou, international students and other non-nationals are being blamed for the spread of coronavirus and have ended up homeless as a result of being turned out by landlords, with hotels refusing to give them rooms.

“They are accusing us of having the virus,” one Nigerian student told the BBC.

“We paid rent to [the landlords] and after collecting rent they chased us out of the house. Since last night we have been sleeping outside.”

Accommodation and giving notice for leaving due to coronavirus has proved to be a stickler in many countries. In the UK, some accommodation providers are insisting students continue to pay for unused rooms.

Students in France who go home have been exempted from having to give one month notice for residences in public students halls. Campus France told The PIE that the French government has earmarked €10 million for students in need whether they are French or international, which will provide food vouchers and other support for students who have lost their part-time jobs.

This has not been the case across Europe however.

“The circumstances differ heavily from country to country. The European Commission has issued recommendations for national Erasmus agencies and HEIs on how to deal with the situation,” said Sebastian Berger vice president of the European Students’ Union.

“In many cases, all involved actors are keen on finding solutions in the best interest of the students.

“Unfortunately, we do also receive reports about international students left stranded and in uncertainty with regards to their academic and economic future.”

In Germany, one group is asking the government to do more for both domestic and international students and is asking for €3,000 for every student currently in financial difficulties as the result of coronavirus job losses.

“It should also accessible to international students. Germany is a ‘host country’ and in a crisis has responsibility for these students,” state Bündnis Soforthilfe für Studierende on their website.

“The psychological and financial impact for international students in some cases is even more intense [than for local ones].”

The group has the backing of FZS and several other organisations.

But for Gerrit Bruno Blöss of, a France-style model is “definitely conceivable in Germany”.

“On the other hand, the biggest cost factor for students here is rent, and the government already passed legislation that you can’t be kicked out if you can’t pay your rent now because of coronavirus,” he added.

“Unfortunately, we do also receive reports about international students left stranded”

Agencies like DAAD are trying to help international students find new part-time jobs in sectors currently needing staff by posting links to job boards on their website.

“There are industries and areas such as agriculture or retail that are desperately looking for temporary jobbers,” DAAD noted.

International students have appeared in online forums such as Reddit seeking advice for what to do without work as popular student jobs such as working in bars and restaurants disappear. For those in places where little support is available, users have also suggested students turn their hand to online teaching, particularly languages, or delivery services.

Read these articles for further information about the situation in Australia and New Zealand.

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ETS rolls out TOEFL iBT® Special Home Edition Test

The PIE News - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 10:09

COVID-19 has dramatically altered the international admissions landscape. Institutions and students alike need innovative solutions to address this new reality. That’s why ETS has worked quickly to make the TOEFL iBT® test available for students to take from the safety of home.

“The last couple of months have created unparalleled challenges for higher education”

This at-home solution, the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition, offers a valid and reliable test for students affected by test center closures resulting from COVID-19.

This option is available everywhere the computer-delivered TOEFL iBT test is normally available, with the exception of Mainland China and Iran. In Mainland China, ETS is working closely with NEEA to accommodate test takers impacted by test cancellations, including adding test dates once regular testing resumes. ETS is working to offer at home testing in Iran as soon as possible.

“The last couple of months have created unparalleled challenges for higher education, which have demanded solutions be implemented at a remarkable pace,” said Srikant Gopal, Executive Director of the TOEFL® Program.

“ETS recognised the need for an at-home testing solution to bridge the gap for test takers and institutions until normal testing can resume, from which the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition test was born.”

The TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition test offers an identical testing experience to what students can expect at a test center, while employing a variety of best-in-class measures to maintain test security — from online monitoring by a live human proctor, to AI-powered measures and comprehensive security checks prior to testing. It is the only academic English test with 100% live human proctoring from start to finish.

“ETS prides itself on its test security measures, and this solution is consistent with those self-imposed high standards, which are relied upon by institutions around the world who trust that these tests provide an accurate picture of an applicant’s abilities,” said Gopal.

As the industry navigates this time of unprecedented change, ETS knows that it’s imperative to continue providing students and institutions with the ability to plan for a successful future.

This solution helps to create continuity for students pursuing their educational journeys. It also enables the 11,000+ institutions who accept TOEFL scores to maintain their high standards for English-language testing by continuing to use the same premier test they have relied on for decades, rather than unproven, nonsecure and low-quality home tests.

Sponsored content by ETS.

The post ETS rolls out TOEFL iBT® Special Home Edition Test appeared first on The PIE News.

Chronicle of Higher Education: How to Reconnect With Students and Strengthen Your Remote Course

Students now are distracted, anxious, and sometimes disengaged. Two experts on teaching people with learning differences offer advice on how to rebuild connections.

Calls mount for further student support in Australia

The PIE News - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 07:28

Melbourne city council in Australia will establish a financial hardship fund for international students, according to recent press reports: an update that has come during a week which has seen a growing clamour for more financial support for international students in the country.

This follows the announcement by acting immigration minister, Alan Tudge, that students who had been working in the country would be able to access up to AU$10,000 of savings via their superannuation (pension) scheme.

“[The] City of Melbourne is the first government in Australia to pledge support for a hardship fund for international students and we have asked officers for urgent advice on what form that takes,” said councillor Nicholas Reece.

Reece referred to prime minister Morrisson’s comments last week explaining that international students were not eligible for financial support.

“If most of these students went home, it could destroy a $41 billion dollar industry”

“They were a punch on a bruise for the international students of Melbourne,” he said.

Since Morrisson’s comments, Australia made the further concession to help cash-strapped students. Speaking with ABC News 24, Tudge said, “We’ll be working as quickly as possible for those residents to be able to get that [money].

“And again, it’s keeping with that principle of when they are here, they should be able to look after themselves,” he added.

Acknowledging that there were 185,000 people on temporary work visas with superannuation, Tudge said, “If you’ve been a skilled visa holder for a couple of years, you may well have $10,000 or $20,000 in superannuation which you’ve already accumulated.

That can help you get through to the other side so that then you can be fully re-engaged again if, in fact, you have had your hours reduced or are being stood down.

IEAA’s chief executive, Phil Honeywood, commented that he had been in conversations with education minister Dan Tehan and Tudge and “I am confident that they strongly support our sector”.

But IEAA has written a letter to the PM requesting the establishment of a national hardship fund.

“Given the lack of any political appetite from the major parties to permit international students’ access to welfare programs currently available to Australian citizens, a National Hardship Fund appears to be our best way forward,” Honeywood wrote.

The Green party, however, did state they would back the country’s 500,000+ international student community “by introducing amendments to make temporary visa holders eligible for the JobKeeper scheme”.

CISA, the organisation representing international students across the country, is adding its voice to the chorus.

Kevin McKenna, president of the WA chapter, CISWA, told The PIE News he was very concerned about the situation.

“International students are very different from tourists and backpackers”

“Many [students] now have no means of support, no opportunity to return home and no assistance from our government.”

“It is understandable that the Prime Minister is putting Australians first when considering policies that help to keep people employed but international students are very different from tourists and backpackers,” stated CISWA.

“The international education industry is Australia’s largest export service industry and is responsible for supporting 260,000 jobs. If most of these students went home, it could destroy a $41 billion dollar industry.”

In other moves, Australia’s PM Scott Morrisson spoke with Indian PM Narendra Modi within 48 hours of news coverage of his response on financial support for international students in Australia.

“Prime Minister Morrison similarly assured [Modi] that the Indian community in Australia, including Indian students, would continue to be valued as a vibrant part of Australian society,” reported the government of India’s press bureau.

A “No worker left behind” campaign also gained traction, with a coalition of 124 unions, religious groups and charities calling on the federal government to include temporary migrant workers impacted by the coronavirus crisis in its JobKeeper program.

The post Calls mount for further student support in Australia appeared first on The PIE News.

UK: Bosworth Independent College joins CATS

The PIE News - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 06:07

Bosworth Independent College in Northampton, UK has become the 18th school to integrate into the CATS Colleges group of schools, making CATS one of the largest school groups in the private education sector.

CATS Colleges Group comprises three brands: CATS Colleges – international boarding schools in the UK, US and China; Cambridge School of Visual & Performing Arts; and Stafford House, a chain of English language schools in the UK and North America.

“Bosworth will be able to access a range of support so that together we can create bright futures for more students”

Each year, the group educates over 18,000 students from 100 countries to prepare for the next stage of their educational careers.

Bosworth, which provides independent boarding education to pupils from the UK and abroad, has more than 300 students including more than 200 boarders from 39 countries.

“I’m delighted to welcome Bosworth Independent College to the group,” said Chris Stacey, CEO of CATS Colleges.

“A small school with a tight-knit community, Bosworth will be able to access a range of support from around the network so that together we can create bright futures for more students.”

As part of the integration plans, Bosworth will offer a new University Foundation Programme designed specifically for international students and will be able to take advantage of CATS Colleges’ links with more than 30 UK universities offering conditional progression opportunities.

Both CATS Colleges and Bosworth Independent College were purchased separately last year by Bright Scholar Education Holdings Limited, the largest operator of international and bilingual schools in China.

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CIEE cuts 600+ jobs due to pandemic

The PIE News - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 01:55

The Council on International Educational Exchange, a non-profit organisation that operates study abroad and exchange programs, is set to cut more than 600 jobs due to the coronavirus pandemic.

CIEE has facilitated people-to-people international exchange for nearly 75 years. However, it announced that it is pausing its activities because of the “massive” negative financial impact of the virus.

“We are heartbroken for the negative impact this necessary action will have”

Now, according to a report by Maine Business News, the organisation is cutting 355 jobs in the US and 300 internationally. CIEE will end 248 jobs in Portland, the site of its world headquarters.

“Like so many organisations across America and the world, CIEE has been forced to take immediate and significant action to protect our future existence, and sadly, our most precious asset, our people, will be most impacted,” CIEE said in a statement.

The statement said that CIEE is announcing a significant reduction in force for both our domestic and international employees.

“It will impact families and communities around the globe…we are heartbroken for the negative impact this necessary action will have on so many of our local and global employees in the days and weeks to come.”

CIEE currently operates 63 sites in 42 countries and typically each year sends 15,000 Americans abroad to study, go on internships, and teach. It welcomes more than 30,000 international exchange visitors to the United States.

The organisation makes the majority of its revenue through its programs. After the outbreak, CIEE’s programs around the world were suspended, and it had to help thousands of students return to the US.

“With prospects for travel and exchange highly uncertain at this time, the negative financial impact on CIEE is massive,” the statement read.

“We recognise that we must respond swiftly and decisively if we are to preserve the ability of CIEE to emerge from this unprecedented event and return to our important mission in the decades ahead.”

Stimulus legislation is currently pending in US Congress, and CIEE said that these provisions will allow the organisation to regain financial stability and to begin rehiring and increasing staffing levels “as soon as possible”.

“CIEE has weathered global crises before, and each time we have come through the storm intact and ready to again build bridges between cultures and to restore relationships that may have become weathered or damaged by the crisis,” the statement continued.

A major player in the study abroad sector, CIEE has provided millions of dollars in scholarship programs such as Generation Study Abroad.

The post CIEE cuts 600+ jobs due to pandemic appeared first on The PIE News.

Arizona Withdraws Funded Graduate Offers

Inside Higher Ed - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 00:00

The University of Arizona is withdrawing funding packages to accepted graduate students who have not yet committed to the institution. The philosophy blog Daily Nous first reported the news, as it pertains to Arizona’s philosophy department.

Chris Sigurdson, university spokesperson, said via email Wednesday evening that the policy applies to the entire institution. Given the “unanticipated financial pressures brought to bear by the coronavirus crisis, we wanted to give potential graduate students who had not yet accepted our offer the opportunity to make other plans if they chose,” he said.

The policy does not apply to funding based on grants or scholarships. Accepted students may still choose to enroll, but with limited or no financial support.

“Our goal to protect our current graduate students from potential losses of funding and we needed to limit outstanding financial offers to ensure that,” Sigurdson said.

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Community college faculty members adjust to remote learning

Inside Higher Ed - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 00:00

As the novel coronavirus spread, colleges around the country were forced to quickly close campuses and move learning online to help flatten the curve.

But not all at once. Colleges with fewer resources (and smaller endowments) stayed open for weeks after many highly selective institutions made the switch. Some cited concerns for their students, many of whom rely on campus services like food pantries and computer labs to be successful.

By now, though, instruction nearly everywhere has gone virtual. Inside Higher Ed asked faculty members at community and technical colleges how the shift to remote learning is going at institutions that often have less federal and state funding support while serving some of higher education's most vulnerable students.

Some were optimistic they would get through this with their students, despite difficulty learning how to adapt to online instruction. Others are using a plethora of virtual tools to keep students connected and learning. Those who teach hands-on skills face the most challenges, from finicky technology to concerns for how to grade students' understanding of the lessons.​ Their emailed responses, which have been edited for length and clarity, are below.

David Shapiro, founding faculty member of philosophy at Cascadia College in Washington

I have been a classroom teacher of philosophy for more than a quarter century, and I am, if I do say so myself, pretty good at it.

I know how to engage students in the questions, I’m skilled in techniques for fostering dialogue and discussion, and I have countless exercises in my bag of teaching tricks for creating a vibrant community of inquiry in the classroom.

I have developed my abilities over the course of my teaching career thanks to some excellent classroom teachers of my own, lots of hard work, hours of professional development and decades of trial and error. It’s taken a long time to get to this point, and every day in the classroom I learn something new that can help me be better tomorrow.

Now, however, I’ve been thrown into the world of online teaching and have had all of one week of “extended spring break” to convert my spring quarter classes to the virtual environment. I’m committed to doing the best job I can, but it’s ludicrous to imagine that the learning experience for my students will be anywhere near as rich as what they would get in the “face-to-face modality.”

My heart goes out to them; they had been expecting their professor to be an experienced educator; what they’re getting is something more like the graduate student I was the very first time I TAed -- that inexperienced person in front of the classroom with the deer-in-the-headlights look in their eyes.

We’ll make the best of it, I’m sure, but I feel bad about how bad I will be at teaching online. I suppose the positive takeaway is that I’ll learn from the experience. A quarter century from now, I might be pretty good at it.

Christian Moriarty, professor of ethics and law and academic chair of the Applied Ethics Institute at St. Petersburg College in Florida

Our move to remote learning was, fortunately, a relatively smooth one. Just under half of St. Petersburg College (a state community college in southwest Florida with an enrollment of about 45,000 students) was already [using] online modalities, with all of the infrastructure and staff to support it. There was significant behind-the-scenes scrambling in the short period of time after spring break, both from the administrative and academic sides of the house, but we have a great team who got everything together. Particularly our Online Learning Services folks, who have been nothing short of miracle workers.

We have synchronous meeting and proctoring software up and running to be available to anyone to wants it, students and faculty alike. There are pockets of issues here and there, such as science lab classes and clinicals, but we’re getting them handled to where both our accreditors and our students are as happy as they can be under the circumstances.

A challenge we’re facing head-on is our students who are suddenly finding themselves in a full-remote atmosphere when they did not originally plan for it. After we conducted a survey, a significant contingent reported that they are feeling economic impairments due to the responses to COVID. Not only may they be out of work, but they may also be taking care of family and children at home, making them unable to concentrate as fully as they would otherwise like to on school.

We’ve addressed this challenge in three major ways: bringing to bear the full attention and care of our faculty to our students and establishing a sense of normality in addition to academics, collating and distributing information and assistance on learning effectively and shifting to an online environment, and the St. Petersburg College Foundation putting the Student Emergency Fund into high gear. While we have always had the fund, focusing on helping students through tough economic situations, I’m incredibly proud of the community who have stepped up their giving to these scholars in their time of need. We’re happy to help them with what we can, such as bills, food and whatever else that can establish stability and finish the semester strong.

Jeff Elsbecker, lead instructor in the digital modeling and fabrication program at IYRS School of Technology & Trades in Rhode Island

Because most of my program's faculty are adjunct, we already conducted most of the communication outside of class by way of email and a digital classroom. In addition, a major part of the curriculum is CAD, which is done on computer and can be shared digitally. Finally, the bulk of our hands-on instruction had been completed. Some of the groundwork was already there, so the transition to online was not cold turkey. We've had to redefine final projects to a largely digital outcome.

Some challenges include students' loss of a daily routine, which created a noticeable drop in productivity, and students' loss of access to the studio equipment, as this is still a program about making things.

To help overcome some of these, we've been holding regular individual check-ins with students and morning video meetings. We've also been extending deadlines somewhat.

Each student has a 3-D printer they took home with them. They are able to do a good deal of prototyping at home. Some faculty are still on duty in the studio. Students are able to send proven digital files, which we can put on our more advanced machines. They can pick these up curbside.

Nels Larson, lead instructor of marine systems at ​IYRS School of Technology & Trades in Rhode Island

Remote learning was new to me and personally not the way I would like to learn on a full-time basis. I always found tutorials helpful in a subject that I was familiar with. For those reasons I chose to do our presentations live. To achieve this we presented our lectures live in the classroom with no changes or preparation for one to two hours a day. This did keep the attention of the students and was well received for one and a half weeks. The problem we started to have was getting the hands-on presentations and the hands-on experiential learning needed to continue the class. It will take a substantial investment to prepare and deliver that type of material.

We prepared a pre-record[ed] demonstration and presented it to the students. The lesson was using a volt meter and ampacity of wire. We physically burn a wire. This demonstration is dangerous and necessary to understand the lecture. We recorded, and it took three different takes before we were ready to present. The presentation was good but did have some inaccuracies. This would be acceptable in the shop. At that point we determined all record[ed] demonstrations need to be of a high standard. We also felt the students who needed to ask questions did not ask them. I believe that remote learning will not work with students who have no experience in the topic being taught. The amount of material needed to learn in a six-month period cannot be delivered remotely.

Technical trades can only be taught remotely in tutorials to students who have a technical [background] and in small doses.

AnneMarie Garmon, instructor of criminal justice at Central Piedmont Community College in North Carolina​

My approach to remote teaching was to focus on maintaining a high level of learning and connection while also minimizing stress for my students. I knew that all of the unknowns of our current situation were causing a lot of anxiety for me personally, and when I thought about what my students might be feeling, I realized that their mental health was also very important to our collective success. I have made communication the No. 1 focus, because if we can talk with each other, about not just academic topics but also life challenges, we can begin to feel as if we have a little more control of the “new normal.”

Some items that I’ve implemented to help keep communication open include Google Hangouts, WebEx teams/meetings and Calendly (which students can use to schedule one-on-one virtual meetings). I also have given my students a phone number they can text through Google Voice. Because we have so many ways to reach out, I wanted to capitalize on as many options as I could to appeal to the students’ preferences as well. The last thing I’m considering adding is a platform on social media, like Facebook, for a more informal way to socialize.

One of the most effective tools that I have used in teaching, which fosters great communication for both academic topics and current events, is Packback. A platform for online discussion, Packback allows the students to discuss topics and issues that are subject-related while also not overburdening me as the instructor. The use of AI in the platform also gives students feedback to help them create thoughtful questions and responses, and not just the typical “I agree” that we see in discussion boards. I added this tool to my classes that went from seated to online, and thus far it has been easy for the students to use.

Now that we have settled into the online environment with our traditional students, I hope to keep adding tools to help us continue social interactions virtually. I am also going to organize some optional activities for the students, like using Zoom to have a coffee meeting or using Kast to host a watch party online. I believe that learning can take place in these settings just as easily as the classroom -- we just have to adjust and accept change.

Hans Scholl, instructor of boat building and restoration at IYRS School of Technology & Trades in Rhode Island

The predominant part of our curriculum is hands-on shop work, restoring wooden boats, and is not transferable to nor replaceable by remote learning.

For the part that teaches theory, we spent one week preparing for remote teaching. Half of that week was implementation, training and testing of technical options, mostly using Zoom. The other half was preparing content and preparing the students in one-to-one phone calls for the upcoming remote teaching.​

We are currently holding two classes every morning, with the afternoons spent on documentation, one-to-one phone interaction with students, where needed, and mostly with preparing content for next days’ classes.

Because we can directly demonstrate practical skills in the shop during regular class, we had little incentive in the past to create videos of these demonstrations. On the other hand, these videos would be good to have in the current situation.

We have started to film in the shop but have not had the time nor resources to get very far. The session we filmed was done by one instructor in the shop, taking video with his phone, which was then part of the Zoom recording. Though the result was commendable to be used in the current situation, any results obtained in this fashion remain inferior to a dedicated video, filmed by a second person with professional video-photography and editing skills, good lighting and a dedicated camera, where the instructor is free to fully focus on content and not also taking video.

​We have encountered mostly technical problems, such as the low bandwidth of Zoom, which makes it not feasible to stream video and results in choppy audio and pixelated video in general. At times, not even screen sharing of text was possible, leading to early termination and rescheduling of one class.​

Platforms other than Zoom had similar issues. The best option for small student groups and coordination between instructors has been Apple’s FaceTime.

During a typical school day, student understanding of the theory taught is mostly verified during the subsequent hands-on work on restoring boats, where subjects that were not clearly understood by the student become visible during their application and can then be retrained and practiced.

This approach is not feasible during remote learning. We reverted to more discussion to obtain student feedback, which was often compromised by the technical problems and low audio quality. Some students have no video capability, which makes us miss visible cues that we would get face-to-face. We plan on testing understanding through quizzes but haven’t had any time to prepare, administer, correct and follow up with students yet.

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Americans are losing income and preferring online education

Inside Higher Ed - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 00:00

Six in 10 Americans have lost jobs, hours or income from the coronavirus pandemic, according to results of a new survey from Strada Education Network, a nonprofit that researches and funds education and employment pathways. These results are the second weekly batch in a multiweek longitudinal study. The share of respondents who have lost income is up 15 percentage points from the previous week's results.

Strada's data suggest that degrees and credentials are not insulating Americans from the economic effects of the pandemic. Two-thirds of associate or vocational degree holders and 63 percent of bachelor's degree holders reported lost income, compared to only 54 percent of participants with some college experience but no degree.

"Although this is hitting everyone really hard, in some ways that population was a little bit less impacted by losing jobs or income," Nichole Torpey-Saboe, Strada's director of research, said in reference to the participants with some college credit but no degree, noting that in the future the organization may want to look at the industries where those respondents are employed.

About a third of respondents said that if they were to lose their job, they believe they would need additional education or training to maintain their same income, consistent with the previous week's results. Of those, 64 percent said they would look for a job in a different field.

The Strada respondents also demonstrated a large preference for online instruction. Over half said that if they were given $5,000 to invest in their education, they would spend it on online education, as opposed to in-person education or employer-provided training.

Torpey-Saboe said that while a person's level of education affected what degree level they would choose to pursue in that situation (bachelor's degree holders aren't looking at community colleges, for example), the preference for online was felt at all education levels.

"We haven't seen any sort of pattern that stands out for level of education," she said.

The survey did not address how consumers believe they will pay or would like to pay for any future education. Dave Clayton, Strada's senior vice president for consumer insights, said that when the dust settles and government stimulus bills have been completed, that may be a better time to ask the question.

Andrew Hanson, director of research at Strada, said that while the survey did not look at exactly how this downturn is affecting employment pathways, there is definite concern in that area.

"Access to things like internships and other options that employers provide are of concern I would think going forward, but it's probably too early to tell," he said.

In the 2008 recession, he noted, more recent employees were usually the first to be let go.

"No reason to anticipate that will be different this time," he said.

The latest survey was conducted with 1,000 respondents over the age of 18 and was representative of the general population in terms of age, gender, region and race.

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Roundup: Emergency aid, budget cuts and a rhyme

Inside Higher Ed - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 00:00

The novel coronavirus continues to upset our worlds. But it's possible we're getting closer to a vaccine, as those who had the virus donate their blood and plasma for research.

In possibly more disturbing news, apparently we are all having the same nightmares, fueled by anxiety around COVID-19.

To ease that anxiety, here are some palate cleansers.

First, a roundup of funny memes and videos to ease your mind.

Here's a nice rhyme to send your would-be Passover Seder guests during this time.

— Prof Dynarski (@dynarski) April 8, 2020

And, if you're bored, here's a handy guide to at-home bird watching.​

Let’s get to the news.

New York is on a roll. Andrew Cuomo, the state's Democratic governor, announced New Yorkers who have private student loans will get some relief, including the ability to defer their loan payments for 90 days. Advocates have called for Congress to extend some of its federal student loan relief conditions to private borrowers, but that wasn't included in the $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief package.

The City University of New York has started an emergency relief fund for students who are struggling because of COVID-19. It hopes to eventually raise $10 million for the fund and will initially give $500 each to 14,000 students.

Law graduates who can't take the July bar exam because of the coronavirus may still be able to practice law. The American Bar Association's Board of Governors passed a policy resolution urging state licensing authorities to let recent graduates practice in a limited capacity.

Here’s a quick roundup of our latest stories, in case you’ve fallen a bit behind (we don’t blame you):

Institutions are changing how much they weigh students' evaluations of instructors due to the ongoing health crisis. Doug Lederman explores what that could mean for the common tool.

Many colleges have agreed to offer dorm room space for first responders to the coronavirus pandemic. This can require them to clean out students' belongings -- which doesn't always go smoothly, Greta Anderson reports.

In the midst of all this, an annual survey from the American Association of University Professors found that faculty pay is flat, as it has been for the past few years, Colleen Flaherty reports.

Scott Jaschik wrote about another study that found minority enrollment decreases at colleges in states where affirmative action is banned.

News From Elsewhere

Education Dive has a piece on online proctors, which are in high demand now that higher education has gone virtual.

The National Association of Student Financial Aid and Administrators wrote about expected budget cuts in states, including cuts to higher education.

The pandemic-induced recession is hitting the higher education industry unevenly, according to The Chronicle of Higher Education. Small colleges are particularly concerned.

Percolating Thoughts

This is a time when everyone has an opinion. As journalists, we try not to have opinions, but we've gathered some interesting ones from others.

The president of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities makes the case for a national coalition aimed at retaining at-risk students and building digital infrastructure.

Higher Learning Advocates, a D.C. think tank focused on nontraditional students, asks institutions to not "waste a crisis."

A professor and a dean discuss how to teach labs online in the age of coronavirus.

Have any percolating thoughts or notice any from others? Feel free to send them our way or comment below.

We’ll continue bringing you the news you need in this crazy time. Keep sending us your questions and story ideas. We’ll get through this together.

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Dispute in Ireland over academic freedom and internationalization

Inside Higher Ed - jeu, 04/09/2020 - 00:00

A fight between scholars and senior managers at an Irish university has highlighted the ongoing tension between internationalization and academic freedom.

A working group established by the academic council at University College Dublin last month proposed an addendum to the institution’s statement on academic freedom, in which it explained that it was important for "a university with a large international footprint, to consider and appraise the risk of tension arising between the obligations regarding academic freedom and the strategic imperative to internationalize higher education."

The draft addendum added that “there is little firm ground (including case law) on which to rest an agreed definition of what academic freedom means” and pointed out that “learning about and engaging with other traditions of academic freedom is a valuable component of such international partnerships.”

It said the university should establish “whether divergent approaches to academic freedom can be reconciled or accommodated” during partnership negotiations.

The working group revised its recommendations this week just hours after academics signed a petition claiming that the addendum “amounts to a serious weakening of [a] crucial academic value” and Times Higher Education approached the institution for comment. Some scholars had also raised concerns that the draft addendum and a survey on the subject were shared with staff when they were distracted by the COVID-19 crisis.

However, academics said they were still concerned that the initial proposals had been considered, and they speculated about whether the university would attempt to reintroduce them at a later date.

The revised recommendations suggest that UCD should introduce measures to ensure that scholars are informed about “the specific context applying to academic freedom in other jurisdictions where they may be required to teach.” They add that academic freedom should be “addressed in the initial stages of all international partnership negotiations with the aim of promoting the tradition and ethos of academic freedom as articulated in the UCD Statement of Academic Freedom.”

Wolfgang Marx, associate professor in musicology at UCD, who started the petition, said the original proposals would have “relativized” and “downgraded” academic freedom from a basic principle to “a legal nicety that needs to be negotiated on a case-by-case basis and can be sacrificed if it stands too much in the way of … the acquisition of lucrative fee-paying students, and the setting up of joint programs and campuses.”

While Marx described the university’s U-turn as a victory for academics, he added that the increasing financial pressure on universities as a result of the coronavirus crisis might result in other institutions considering changes to their academic freedom policies in a bid to secure more international partnerships.

Patrick Paul Walsh, full professor of international development studies at UCD, said it was “quite concerning” that the university “would even consider trading off” academic freedom “to profit from internationalization of education.”

“A lot of governments are not open to the idea that academics can talk absolutely freely … Maybe we just shouldn’t be setting up partnerships in these countries,” he said.

Grace Mulcahy, chair of the academic freedom working group at UCD, said it had “revised its recommendations in response to the feedback received from faculty.”

“The objective of the working group was to provide additional protections to strengthen academic freedom,” she added.

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Chronicle of Higher Education: The Decision

As the coronavirus outbreak spread across the United States, college leaders faced a choice that would have been unthinkable weeks before.

read more

Chronicle of Higher Education: 4 Colleges, 2 Weeks, One Choice: How Covid-19 Scattered U.S. Higher Education

As the pandemic spread, campus presidents came to grips with a reality that had once been unthinkable — and helped pave the way for the rest of the country to follow suit.

CUNY Starts Emergency Fund for Coronavirus Relief

Inside Higher Ed - mer, 04/08/2020 - 13:05

The City University of New York has launched an emergency relief fund for students who need financial help due to the coronavirus crisis.

The Chancellor's Emergency Relief Fund will distribute grants of $500 each to thousands of CUNY students. The Carroll and Milton Petrie Foundation and the James and Judith K. Dimon Foundation have provided initial gifts of $1 million each for the fund, which is the first of its kind at CUNY. Several other corporate sponsors have given an additional $1.25 million.

CUNY hopes to raise $10 million over the next few months for the fund.

About 275,000 CUNY students come from households with median annual incomes of about $40,000, and 38 percent come from families earning less than $20,000. Nearly half of CUNY students work while attending college.

Students will begin receiving the grants the week of April 20. They will be chosen by lottery from a group of about 14,000 students who met financial need and academic criteria. CUNY hopes to provide more grants in the coming months as it raises funds.

“The coronavirus pandemic is having a devastating economic impact on many of our students, and this unprecedented emergency fund will provide rapid-response financial support to those who need it most,” Félix V. Matos Rodríguez, CUNY's chancellor, said in a statement.

CUNY has also bought 30,000 computers and tablets for students who need them to participate in distance learning. About 1,600 CUNY community college students received $400 for food, and 117 foster-care students in a CUNY initiative will receive $425 emergency grants.

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Chronicle of Higher Education: Why New Research Calls Some Flagships ‘Land-Grab Universities’

Robert Lee spent years uncovering how America built its system of public higher education through the seizure of indigenous lands. He says his newly published research is just the tip of the iceberg.

Chronicle of Higher Education: Why Some Researchers Are Calling Flagships ‘Land-Grab Universities’

Robert Lee spent years uncovering how America built its system of public higher education through the seizure of indigenous lands. He says his newly published research is just the tip of the iceberg.

Law Schools and Coronavirus: Bar Exemptions and More

Inside Higher Ed - mer, 04/08/2020 - 10:39

The American Bar Association's Board of Governors passed a policy resolution this week urging state licensing authorities to allow 2019 and 2020 law graduates who can’t take the July bar exam to practice law in a limited capacity. Some jurisdictions already have canceled the July administration of the test due to COVID-19.

Graduates of ABA-approved law schools may practice “under the supervision of a licensed attorney if the July bar exam in their jurisdiction is canceled or postponed due to public health and safety concerns arising from the coronavirus pandemic,” the ABA announced, summarizing the policy recommendation. The proposal applies only to first-time bar takers and would enable them to practice through 2021 without taking the exam.

“By justifiably postponing bar examinations, states are protecting law students and the public’s health, but the lives and careers of law graduates are being adversely affected,” Judy Perry Martinez, ABA's president, said in a statement. “This guidance for an emergency law graduate rule will not only help the recent law graduates work within the legal sector in a meaningful way, but also will add more people to help address the increase in legal needs for individuals and businesses caused by this pandemic.”

How are law schools handling the transition to remote instruction? The Primary Research Group published a survey of law school faculty and staff members on distance legal education. Forty-three percent of faculty members surveyed preferred to deliver course content using Zoom or other group meetings, while 31 percent preferred course management systems. Fifteen percent of professors delivered lectures through downloadable video links, asynchronously, and 22 percent set up a chat forum for their classes.

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