Two weeks ago, HEQCO released a report on university sustainability in Ontario. More concerned with definitions than data, the report nevertheless contained several inaccuracies. OCUFA president Judy Bates wrote to Harvey Weingarten, CEO of HEQCO, with the following clarifications: Dear Dr. Weingarten; I am writing in regards to HEQCO’s recent publication, “Understanding the Sustainability of […]

A new study published in the Journal of Education Finance suggests that public two- and four-year higher education institutions might be reducing enrolment of low-income students due to punishment-based funding (PBF) regimes , where money is tied to specific performance indicators. This paper joins the growing body of research that demonstrates the ineffectiveness of PBF in improving student outcomes. Using data on all public American institutions in the […]

Registration is now open for the annual Worldviews Lecture on Media and Higher Education, featuring Rajani Naidoo, Chair in Higher Education Management and Director of the International Centre for Higher Education Management at the University of Bath. Professor Naidoo will deliver a lecture titled, “Beyond the Competition Fetish: Higher Education for Global Wellbeing.” Universities everywhere have a […]

Fifty years ago, the Government of Ontario began to invest in the university sector, increasing the number of institutions and the spaces available to qualified students. This has allowed us to make huge gains in access and quality. But now, we’re on the precipice of undoing a half century of accomplishments. Ontario’s per-student funding for […]

A new survey conducted by Abacus Data on behalf of Universities Canada found that a majority of Canadians – 77 per cent – have a positive view of the country’s universities . However, a majority of Canadians – 54 per cent – believe that our higher education institutions are underfunded. Encouragingly, 88 per cent of those polled believed that governments should invest in […]

On March 12, the government announced that it will be launching consultations to inform a review of the funding formula for universities , starting this spring. The process will be open, formal and transparent and will include students, administration, and faculty. The government has also indicated that employers, colleges, professional associations and the elementary and secondary education sector will be included […]

A new report by the Council of Ontario Universities (COU) finds that Ontario’s higher education institutions make a huge contribution to communities across the province. In particular, the report finds that, “an average Ontario faculty member devotes about 20 per cent of their work hours to services, such as informing policy and using their skills and knowledge to […]

For the first time ever, tuition fee revenue has exceeded public operating funding for Ontario’s universities. Tuition fees now account for almost 51 per cent of the university operating budgets across the province. “Our universities are meant to be public – that is, supported by public dollars,” said Kate Lawson, President of OCUFA. “The fact […]

New data from the Times Higher Education explores the impact of austerity on European universities. Their analysis of finances and student numbers from 2008-2013 paints a fascinating picture of the different paths taken by countries struggling with the need to accommodate increased student demand and the long hangover of the Great Recession. In all nine countries surveyed, student numbers continue to expand. However, […]

Today, the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) released the Strategic Mandate Agreements (SMAs) signed with every Ontario college and university . Each SMA covers a three-year period, expiring in 2017. The agreements are intended to determine a university’s key priorities, and to align these priorities with the government’s Differentiation Policy Framework. It is expected that the SMAs will have an impact on new program approvals. It […]

Ontario’s professors and academic librarians are today looking forward to working with Premier Kathleen Wynne and her government to address Ontario’s higher education challenges. “While Ontario’s colleges and universities were not a focus of the election campaign, they are among our most powerful tools for creating jobs, boosting the economy, and building a fairer society,” […]

A new survey by the Council of Ontario Universities (COU) shows that the people of Ontario think universities make an important contribution to the province , behind only hospitals and schools in public esteem. Ontarians also think that students “benefit greatly” from a university education. This level of public support demonstrates the resilience of public attitudes in the face of negative – and […]

Professors and academic librarians across Ontario are calling for the Government of Ontario to make university teachers a meaningful part of its new “Ontario Online” initiative. The $42 million program was announced today by Minister of Training, Colleges, and Universities Brad Duguid. “Ontario’s professors are the ones who design and teach online courses, and yet […]

Across Canada and in Ontario, business and provincial government investment in research is falling, and universities are picking up the slack. The latest data on research and development (R&D) from Statistics Canada indicate that aggregate research expenditures in Canada will fall this year. Once forecast GDP inflation (1.3 per cent) is taken into account, the decline […]

The term “program prioritization” has been making headlines recently, as several Ontario universities have begun this controversial rationalization process. Program prioritization involves ranking every academic and administrative program according to set criteria, and then directing more resources to highly ranked programs while marking poor performers for cuts and closure. Program prioritization is based on a […]