Animal magic: True crime on campus §14

More true crime on campus Not all of the challenges faced by our ever-vigilant Security team are down to people. Some involve animals of one kind or another (albeit sometimes with human involvement): 2020 Report of a bird in the Graduate School. Security attended but the bird could not be found. 1800 Report of dogs … Continue reading Animal magic: True crime on campus §14


The Great Brain Race by Ben Wildavsky I read this some months ago but, inexplicably, failed to note the fact. Wildavsky is a clear, cogent and persuasive writer. He provides a good review of the global higher education picture and many of the key issues facing nations and universities. There is, unsurprisingly, plenty of coverage … Continue reading Brainy

THOSE A level pictures

There is only one place to go for the A level pictures everyone expects, namely It's Sexy A-Levels!: A blog exploring the hypothesis that UK newspapers believe that only attractive girls in low cut tops do A-Levels. It is truly entertaining. But there is one pic of a boy, reproduced here for a reminder of … Continue reading THOSE A level pictures

More bonkers degrees?

Are they bonkers? Or just very well targeted? With apologies for repetition. But it is August. And in the context of A-level results day, we all need to reflect on the real value of some of the finest HE provision around. Previous posts have covered similar ground including a zombie course at the University of … Continue reading More bonkers degrees?

2011 Shanghai Jiao Tong World Rankings: Top 10 and UK placings

2011 Shanghai Jiao Tong World Rankings: Top 10 and UK placings The rankings have been published and are available at the ARWU site I believe but there seem to be problems with access at time of writing. Am therefore going with second hand accounts of the positions (which I hope are accurate). As last year … Continue reading 2011 Shanghai Jiao Tong World Rankings: Top 10 and UK placings

Where is the Most Beautiful Campus?

Florida, apparently In yet another league table, although one yet to capture the public imagination, the Princeton Review has ranked Florida Southern College the nation's "Most Beautiful Campus". The ranking is based on a student survey and the full story is here. College officials learned Tuesday the campus has moved from the No. 9 spot … Continue reading Where is the Most Beautiful Campus?

Keeping it in the family: Italian academia

Italian academia is a family business according to new statistical analysis A previous post noted a report highlighting the problems of nepotism in Italian universities. More detailed information has recently been published including statistical analysis which reinforces this point. The analysis focuses on the frequency of last names in disciplines and institutions and suggests "rampant … Continue reading Keeping it in the family: Italian academia

Fraud failings “could cost £1bn a year”

Silly season stuff? Times Higher carries a story suggesting universities' counter-fraud failings could cost £1bn a year: Higher education is the worst at protecting against fraud of all publicly funded sectors, with the annual cost potentially exceeding £1 billion, a new report suggests. The study, by the University of Portsmouth and accountancy firm PKF, found … Continue reading Fraud failings “could cost £1bn a year”

Youth club: True crime on campus §13

More true crime on campus In addition to dealing with the challenges presented by staff, students and visitors to campus, our indefatigable Security team also has to cope with the inappropriate activities of various groups of youths: 1920 Patrol Security Officer stopped a group of youths swimming in the Lake at Jubilee Campus. The youths … Continue reading Youth club: True crime on campus §13

Sustaining Excellence conference

2011 APM Conference - Sustaining Excellence A brief note on what felt like a really good event, building on the success of first APM conference last summer and involving nearly 300 professional services staff from across the University. Keynotes In the main sessions we heard about the development campaign from Professor Jane Seymour together with … Continue reading Sustaining Excellence conference

Following the money: paying out for AAB

"Universities cut fees for top students" According to The Sunday Times that is. However, the headline doesn quite match the story which is a bit more complicated than that. The BBC presents it a little differently as "Universities to offer A grade students cash". All of this seems to be sparked by comments from Steve … Continue reading Following the money: paying out for AAB