Today, Minister of Training, Colleges, and Universities Brad Duguid announced a new tuition framework for Ontario’s higher education institutions. The new policy caps yearly increases for undergraduates at 3 per cent (down from 5 per cent under the previous framework, while graduate and professional fees will increase by 5 per cent (down from 8 per cent). Total institutional increases are also capped at 3 […]

Funding for basic research is the cornerstone of knowledge creation and innovation. Unfortunately, the federal government is doubling down on commercialization and letting basic research languish. At Canadian universities, the largest chunk of public funding earmarked for university research comes from the federal government. In 2011-12, federal grants and contracts accounted for three-quarters of public research […]

On the one hand, the latest data from the Common University Data Ontario (CUDO) indicate the deterioration of student-faculty ratios and class sizes seem to be slowing. On the other, the slope is still downwards and indicators suggest things are worse than during the final year of the “Double Cohort.” The Double Cohort was the bubble […]

The gap in government funding between Ontario universities and American public universities has narrowed, albeit simply by default. But the gap in provincial funding between Ontario and the rest of Canada is headed in the other direction. At its best in 2006-07, the rate of Ontario government operating, trust and research funding for teaching, research and […]

On February 19, 2013, new Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne presented her first Speech from the Throne, outlining the priorities of her government. As expected, the speech contained a heavy focus on deficit reduction, economic growth, and employment. The speech signaled that the government will continue to pursue austerity policies, but reflected a softer approach to […]

Just about everyone agrees that Ontario needs strong universities to drive student success, economic growth, and social vitality. Too bad the Government of Ontario still hasn’t gotten the message. The Council of Finance Officers – Universities of Ontario (COFO) report for 2011-12 indicates that provincial operating funding to Ontario universities increased by two per cent […]

Today, OCUFA released new poll findings on public attitudes towards higher education and austerity in Southwestern Ontario. Presented at a news conference at the University of Western Ontario, the results indicate that residents of the region do not want the government’s deficit-cutting agenda to compromise the quality of university education in the province. Key findings […]

It is not hard to imagine what will happen to student debt as governments scale back their funding for postsecondary education, causing institutions to increase tuition to cover the shortfall. The latest report on student debt in the United States shows that the average inflation-adjusted debt for first time bachelor’s degree graduates rose from $14,700 […]

The latest provincial-level data on Research and Development (R&D) shows that R&D expenditures as a proportion of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Ontario continue to be higher than the national average. Only Quebec spends more. Although Canadian – and Ontario and Quebec – businesses spend comparatively less than the OECD average , they still account for the largest proportion of R&D expenditures. Quebec businesses invest […]

The Council of Canadian Academies’ report on the gender dimensions of Canada’s research capacity found that the pattern of under-representation of women in universities is similar to that in other advanced countries. While recognizing Canadian women have made great strides, the assessment identified a number of life-course factors affecting their success. The broadest factor concerns the learning and professional trajectories of […]

Female academics in Canada have made gains, but their progress remains uneven by discipline and rank according to new research. The Council of Canadian Academies (CCA) recently released an assessment of the factors influencing the career paths of women academics at Canadian universities. Part of the story it tells is similar to the one outlined in last year’s Statistics […]

Last week, former COU head Ian Clark published an article in the National Post calling for Ontario to adopt California-style university differentiation. Based on a larger research paper submitted to the Government of Ontario, Clark argues that Californian universities get more teaching and research for public dollars than Ontarian institutions. In a recently published response , Ken Snowdon takes this argument apart (full disclosure: OCUFA did […]

Much has been made recently about the “productivity” of Ontario’s universities. But when it comes to graduation rates – a key indicator of productivity – Ontario leads the United States by a huge margin. In 2010, the Ontario government set a goal of a 70 per cent post-secondary attainment rate (including apprenticeships) amongst Ontarians by 2020. This would mean […]

The latest education indicators from the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) suggest that Canada ranks third amongst OECD countries in annual expenditures per student in tertiary (college and university) education. These figures include expenditures by governments on direct support to colleges and universities, support for research and development, and financial support to individuals in the […]

Last weekend, the Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities Glen Murray met with OCUFA’s Board of Directors during its October meeting. The Minister was questioned on his plans for higher education reform in Ontario, on the government’s agenda for university pension plans, and on public sector wage restraint. Overall, it was clear that the Minister has […]