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The government's announcement of a major review of the National Student Survey signals a worrying shift in the HE regulatory landscape, warns Jon Scott, higher education consultant and former Pro Vice-Chancellor (student experience) at the University of Leicester.
Statements from ministers this week have made it clear that higher education in England is facing significant reforms, re-setting its focus towards helping to plug the UK's skills gaps and rebuilding the economy. Fariba Soetan, Policy Lead for Research and Innovation at the National Centre for Universities and Business, argues that the proposed changes bring a welcome focus on graduate outcomes and supporting the careers of young people.
Universities UK and GuildHE have commissioned the Quality Assurance Agency to develop a new approach to reviewing and enhancing the quality of UK TNE. QAA will consult on a new review method later this year and will launch a programme of in-country enhancement activity in 2021.
After a week of largely disappointing news for UK higher education, Nicola Owen, Deputy Chief Executive (Operations) at Lancaster University, fears that gloomy forecasts for the future of the sector may prove to be uncomfortably accurate.
Loughborough University has been named University of the Year for the second time in three years in the latest Whatuni Student Choice Awards .
The government should set "clear and ambitious targets" to grow the number of international students studying in the UK, MPs have said.
A report from the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for International Students calls for a new cross-departmental strategy to restore growth in overseas recruitment and halt "eight years of relative decline". The strategy should include removing international students from immigration targets, it says.
The report makes 12 recommendations which aim to restore the UK's competitiveness in the international sector.
Paul Blomfield MP, co-chair of the International Students APPG, said: “Increasingly restrictive policies and procedures over the last eight years have discouraged many international students from applying to the UK.
“We need to press the reset button, establish an ambitious strategy to increase recruitment, put new policies in place, and send out a clear message that international students are welcome in the UK.
“Our report offers a way forward for the Government, and a route-map to renewed competitiveness for our world-class universities and colleges. I urge Ministers to look carefully at our recommendations and step up to the challenge.”
Commenting on the report, Cobra Beer Founder and Chairman, President of the UK Council for International Student Affairs and International Students APPG co-chair, Lord Bilimoria said:
“Britain is losing in the battle to attract talented and committed international students from around the world. Eight years of prioritising an impossible target using misleading statistics, over our economy and world-leading institutions has left the UK’s position as the second largest destination for international students in jeopardy. It’s time for us to move on and target growth in the number of international students.”
The report recommends:
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