Computing Computer gamers less likely
Frequently playing computer games appears to reduce a teenager's chances of going to university, while reading enhances the likelihood that they will go on to study for a degree, according to Oxford University research that tracked 17,000 people born in 1970.
Reading was also linked to careers success, as the research finds 16-year-olds who read books at least once a month were significantly more likely to be in a professional or managerial job at 33 than those who didn't read books at all.[ Read More.. ]
May 6, 2011, 12:06 pm
University applications rise as candidates race to avoid higher fees
University candidates are racing to submit their applications ahead of the tripling of tuition fees from autumn 2012, figures released today show.
Applications received before Christmas rose by 2.5% compared with the same period the year before, to reach a record high with 335,795 candidates chasing places for 2011 entry.
Competition will once again be intense. Thousands of young people denied a place last autumn have reapplied for courses, fuelling the surge in applications.
Figures for the months leading up to Christmas show that more candidates applied early this year. There was a 20% increase in applications submitted in November and a 5% increase in October.
This means an additional 8,000 candidates are chasing the same number of places as last year, according to figures released by the universities and colleges admission service, Ucas.
The figures give details of applicants' subject choices, indicating a decline in European languages, which dipped by 1.4%, and a 2% drop in demand for history and philosophy. Applications for medicine and dentistry rose by 3.5%, while the numbers applying for law rose by 2.9%.
The figures reveal a slight drop in the number of under-18s applying, from around 193,000 to just under 191,000. But more than 5,000 more 19-year-olds have applied than did so last year.
Applications from older students are also increasing, with 2,000 more applications from candidates aged 20 and nearly 900 more from 21-year-olds.
Ministers funded an extra 10,000 places for undergraduates starting at English universities last year amid a dramatic increase in applications, but fierce competition still saw one in three candidates missing out.
The government will continue to fund an extra 10,000 places this year, but this provision will be withdrawn by 2012.[ Read More.. ]
January 24, 2011, 12:10 pm
How to think about the police
Why don't we think a bit more widely? Putting aside the events surrounding Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall, what has been noticeable in recent commentary on protests and their policing has been a remarkable lack of strategic thinking. There are comments on kettling and police attitudes and now the question of who should lose their job has arisen.[ Read More.. ]
December 13, 2010, 10:27 am
What if you have chosen the wrong degree?
Of the thousands of students who began at university this autumn, one in five will fail to finish their chosen course. The panic will be peaking for this unhappy multitude about now as, a couple of months into their studies, they realise it is not just homesickness or novice nerves they've simply committed the next three years to the wrong subject.
"This is an especially common problem for students who get their university place through clearing because they often end up on a course they didn't choose," says Margaret Holborough, a careers adviser with Graduate Prospects. "50% of people just need reassurance because the jump between A-levels and a degree course panics them. But for the rest they tend to find that they can't meet the required standard, or that the contents of the course was different to what they were expecting, or that they simply don't enjoy it."[ Read More.. ]
November 22, 2010, 10:17 am
Graduate unemployment at highest level for 17 years
Nearly one in 11 graduates are unemployed six months after leaving university the highest proportion for 17 years, a study reveals today.
Rising numbers are taking jobs that do not require degrees, including as waiters and checkout workers, the survey of almost 225,000 graduates shows.
The poll, by the Higher Education Careers Services Unit charity, covered 82% of those who completed an undergraduate degree last summer and live in the UK. The pollsters interviewed the graduates in January six months after they left university. It comes as ministers plan to substantially increase the amount graduates pay for their degrees.[ Read More.. ]
November 1, 2010, 12:16 pm
Lib Dem website hacked
A hacker has hijacked a Liberal Democrat website with a message to Nick Clegg not to break his promise on tuition fees.
The site www.liberal democrats.co.uk, which is registered by Liberal Democrat headquarters is linked to a YouTube video in which Nick Clegg repeatedly states that he will "resist, vote against, campaign against, any lifting of the cap".
This week, the Liberal Democrats broadly endorsed the Browne review, which called for the cap on tuition fees currently at £3,290 to be removed. One of the key election pledges of the Lib Dems was to phase out tuition fees over six years.[ Read More.. ]
October 18, 2010, 9:04 am
Students cash in on bike hire revolution
Boris and Barclays' mammoth bike scheme in the capital may be getting all the column inches, but on university campuses across the country, fleets of bikes are already available for hire, and from September the concept will be shifting up a gear.
Schemes in Leeds and York which offer university students and staff cheap bike hire for up to nine months at a time are already well-established and growing in scale, and next month will be rolled out to campuses in Lincoln, Nottingham and Lancaster. The Nottingham project will start out with 460 bikes, with plans to increase this number next year.
But it is the new venture in Newcastle that really catches the eye. Start-up WhipBikes, the brainchild of Robert Grisdale and Jack Payne, two former civil engineering students, takes the concept to the next level with a 24-hour-a-day, mobile phone-operated "green bike" scheme.[ Read More.. ]
October 4, 2010, 10:53 am
Internet plagiarism rising in schools
The number of schools using plagiarism-detecting computer software to catch A-level students cheating in their coursework has rocketed, amid warnings that children as young as 11 need to be taught not to copy and paste from the internet.
Nearly 90 schools and more than 130 colleges now use the Turnitin database to cross-check pupils' work with material found online double the numbers two years ago.
Barry Calvert, of nLearning, which provides the software, said sixth-form heads believed young people needed to be tutored as early as year 7 in how to formally credit and reference sources, rather than just taking chunks of text off the internet and passing it off as their own.[ Read More.. ]
August 16, 2010, 10:44 am
Skills crisis as children spurn IT
It is no secret that skills shortages are a threat to the UK economy: professions reliant on maths, science and engineering graduates frequently struggle to find qualified candidates. Nowhere is the shortfall more acute than in IT, where BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT (formerly the British Computer Society) is warning of a crisis.
The IT workforce is set to grow at four times the rate of other professions, mainly in the creation of skilled jobs, until 2018. Yet already 43 per cent of employers report a lack of candidates. Together with telecoms, computing has the biggest strategic significance of any sector for the UKs economic future. But with an ageing workforce and a dire shortage of new entrants to the profession, jobs are being outsourced to India and elsewhere.[ Read More.. ]
June 3, 2010, 10:04 am
What a McIdiot! Student throws away winning £500,000 McDonald's Monopoly
When student Richard Newman found a Monopoly sticker on his McDonald's meal, he had no idea what it was.
So the 35-year-old simply threw it away, not realising it was the rarest sticker in the game - and it could have won him half a million pounds.
The PhD philosophy student and his girlfriend collected the Mayfair card when they bought burgers and french fries at a drive-thru McDonalds.
Not knowing it was for the Easy Win Monopoly game, they stuck it to his car steering wheel, and later threw it away.[ Read More.. ]
May 24, 2010, 10:15 am