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1. A world of difference: A global survey of university league tables
Alex Usher and Massimo Savino, Education Policy Insitute, January 2006, 66pp.
This publication looks at the growing trend of 'league tables' in response to the growing demand of comparative information on universities. In particular it discusses “national” league tables from ten countries (Australia, Canada, China, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Poland, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States), as well as three “international” or “cross-national” league tables.
The report shows that the lack of agreement about what constitutes quality has led to a multiplicity of different – and perhaps conflicting – standards in league tables. With more students looking to study internationally, it becomes a problem because students are choosing institutions based on these rankings, yet their choices are being informed by different indicators for each country. Moreover most university rankings operate on a “league table” basis, but an analysis of “best practices” among 19 league tables seems to show that, for the purpose of helping students decide on an institution, it is not a very useful approach.
2. Student Success
Education Policy Institute, January 2006, PDF
The first issue of Student Success, published by the Education Policy Institute, was released this month. This is the first edition of a monthly series, which focuses on issues related to the retention and persistence of students in postsecondary education.