How can universities stop first years from dropping out? Help them become more independent learners

“Equipping university students for the digitally-focused workplace of the future needs to be a key priority”

  First years are struggling with independent learning. In fact, nearly 40% of students in their first year identify this as an area of concern – according to the results of a survey Student Voices we conducted in collaboration with research consultancy Shift Learning – which looked at students’ aspirations, needs and experiences.

This is perhaps not surprising considering most new students come directly from college into HE where there is generally more guided support.

However, with the drop-out rate of university students who give up their studies within 12 months on the rise for the third consecutive year – addressing factors that may help keep students in uni are key and could include:

  1. looking at the main areas for which they seek help
  2. what they need to achieve their goals and
  3. how they like to study

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Germany Meets the Limits of Apprenticeship

“With a population about 25% the size of the United States, Germany has nearly 3x as many apprentices”

 

Question: How many Germans does it take to change a lightbulb at one of our apprenticeship programs? Answer: None. We leave it to the visiting American politicians.

I’ve begun telling this joke to my friends in German’s tech community. American senators, governors, even mayors (most recently the Mayor of Birmingham, Alabama) are a near-constant presence at Germany’s famous apprenticeship programs, visiting, touring – and yes, enjoying our wonderful food and wine – in search of a pathway to good jobs that don’t require a traditional university education.

We Germans are rightly proud of our apprenticeship system, which provides training on not only the technical skills workers need to succeed, but also on “how work works” i.e., training workers on the basics, like how meetings work, and showing up on time. The system dates back to craft guilds from the Middle Ages and involves federally-mandated collaboration between these associations, unions, educational institutions, and government.

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What’s new in EAL delivery for both teachers and pupils?

“The proliferation of online learning courses is well known, but finding a course that is well presented on a high-quality Learning Management System is important”

It is estimated that over 1 billion people are currently learning English worldwide and there have never been so many ways to learn it. We asked industry insiders for their views on the best new advances in technology and delivery to support teachers of EAL and their pupils, both inside and outside the classroom.

For teachers, FutureLearn’s Head of Client Services, Fiona Reay, highlights The British Council’s online program: Teaching for Success: Practices for English Language Teaching. The program helps EAL teachers understand and plan their professional development as an English language teacher. “Taken in any order, the three courses equip any English language teacher with the tools they need to take responsibility for their own CPD. Each course looks at four professional practices and in doing so explains their importance to the continuously developing teacher; offering a range of practical advice and suggestions, as well as providing the opportunity to interact with fellow teachers around the world”, says Fiona.

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5 Books That Every International Educator Should Read

“Adding quality vocabulary instruction practices to your role as an educator can help you identify when a student of yours is quite literally lost in translation”

You’re probably used to assigning books to your students, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some valuable books that can help you be a better educator. The following list of books is intended to broaden your perspective as an international educator so you can be as effective as possible in your classroom of diverse students. Being open to various concepts of thinking and logic will benefit everyone under your instruction.

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Why universities need students with an international outlook

“This ability to collaborate with people from around the world is crucial for the next generation of innovators”

Leading universities are increasingly attracting ‘global students’ with international views and experiences, says Harry Hortyn, co-founder of Oxford Summer Courses

It’s a competitive world out there, and students aspiring to a successful career not only need the right qualifications, they should also be able to demonstrate they have what it takes to thrive in a global marketplace.

The research taking place in university laboratories, studios and libraries today will shape the way we live tomorrow. And to enable the brightest minds from across the world to collaborate effectively and share ideas, universities need their students to have an international outlook.

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How Singapore became an English-speaking country

“Few international students who come to Singapore to study fully understand the intricacies of its complex language history”

Singapore was under British colonial rule for most of the 19th and 20th centuries, but few people outside an educated elite spoke English. It was also a diverse country with three major ethnic groups – Chinese, Indians, and Malays. How did a country consisting of non-native English speakers become a major study abroad destination for students from around the world, many of whom come to Singapore to study English or to study in English?

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Universities losing EU academics in anticipation of Brexit

“Waiting to feel the full force of Brexit is not an option that many EU academics are willing to take”

Amidst a wave of ministerial resignations and speculations surrounding a vote of no confidence, talks over leaving the EU continues to be a mixture of apprehension and scepticism as the future of a Brexit Britain remain worryingly unclear. Waiting to feel the full force of Brexit is not an option that many EU academics are willing to take, with more than 2,300 already having resigned from British universities over the past year.

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How A Hard Brexit Could Affect The International Education Sector

“The future for overseas teachers currently based in the UK isn’t certain”

There are very few people in the sector who relish in the idea of a hard Brexit, but with increasingly tense negotiations it’s looking like a possibility. There are many Brexiteers trying to steer the UK into a hard Brexit because they feel like it’s the best way to deliver the will of the people. Though this might be the case in some respects, it also creates problems.

At the risk of a hard Brexit or no deal at all, it’s important to consider the future. One sector that needs to look into the outcome of hard Brexit is the international education sector.
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Will UK student visas have to change post-Brexit?

“When change finally does occur, what form is the new landscape for EU students likely to take?”

The recognition of education as an economic purpose by the founding fathers of the European Economic Community led to freedom of movement for students of EU and later EEA states plus Switzerland.

This has changed the face of higher education across the Continent, facilitating cross-fertilisation of ideas and consequent innovation across a mobile student and academic population. It is undoubtedly a shining achievement of post-WW2 European politics, and the UK’s great universities have been at the heart of many major developments in learning.
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How international students can adjust to life on a college campus

“As an international student, that first session is crucial to your academic success”

Whether you’ve sat in a world history class or travelled outside your home country, you probably know that cultures and customs vary greatly around the world. College culture is no exception. For international students going to the US to achieve their higher education goals, adjusting to a new lifestyle and culture can be a shock.

Luckily, there are several ways that international student can adjust to life on a college campus. Here are just a few to get you started so you can start your college experience on the right foot.
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