Vote on Tuition Fees Delayed Until Spring 2009

The vote on tuition fees has been delayed until the spring of 2009, according to some very reliable sources. The date for the introduction of fees, should the vote pass (which it probably will) will probably be Autumn 2010.

So, more pain as we wait to see what happens with this. Hopefully we’ll get more information before the spring. What worries me is that this further reduces the amount of time we have to react to the bill, and its contents.

Read all my posts on fees


International student enrolment at Swedish universities rises dramatically

The number of international students at Swedish universities continues to dramatically increase, reported The Local yesterday. The article reports that, in the last academic year, nearly one quarter of all new students at Swedish universities came from overseas.

The figures come from HSV, the national Swedish agency for higher education – you can read their press release here, in Swedish.

Here’s the whole article, in English.

Swedish Universities Worried About Reputation – says Swedish Newspaper

The reputation of Swedish universities will be seriously damaged if international students cannot get their residence permits considerably faster, said the Uppsala Nya Tidning today (in Swedish). This is the key message of a letter from Sweden’s universities to the Swedish government, continues the article, which also identifies Sweden’s embassies as struggling to process all the residence permit applications in time.  An example of this was reported in Pakistan’s Daily Times, on November 3rd, which has a shocking article about 12 000 Pakistani students whose residence permits for Sweden have not been processed in time for the start of term, due to delays at the embassy.

(I’m having real difficulty in getting the link to the Pakistan’s Daily Time’s article to work, here’s the link to their homepage, and here’s the URL of the story,\113\story_3-11-2008_pg7_27 , sorry about this!)

The article continues by pointing out that education will no longer be ‘free’ in Sweden (from 2010) and that this issue becomes even more critical as a result. The article concludes by saying that in the last year the number of applicants has effectively doubled; further growth could place greater pressure on a system which – for some students at least – does not perform at all well.

Read all my article on tuition fees here. relaunch English website for applications- what’s your opinion? Is it better?

Studera. nu, the national online site for making an application to study in Sweden have launched their new English website today. I have not experimented with it yet, but – more importantly – I’d really like to know what the real users opinion of it is. If you’re a student who has used it, either to make an application or prepare for one, I’d really like to know how well it works. Just leave a comment below – thanks! – English site – Online applications to Swedish universities

Missing content, out of date content and poor navigation: External evaluator’s conclusions

I recently blogged about the poor evaluation that Lund’s research pages got in a recent research evaluation (although the research itself was judged, in many cases, of being world class). Now I’ve got more detail about what was wrong with the pages. The biggest usability issues are:

– Missing content

– Out of date content

– Poor navigation

I found this out by sending a questionnaire (using the very groovy Questback) to the evaluators; this got a 35% response rate which was not too shabby. Here’s a table showing the problems they encountered:

evaluators-responsesI asked them if they felt the pages they looked at added to the credibility of Lund; not unsurprisingly only about half said yes.

All the data from the survey, including the evaluator’s opinions on what should be fixed immediately.

Advanced Google Analytics Functions Work With Old Legacy Tracking Code

The upgrades to Google Analytics work if you are still running the old tracking code (urchin.js rather than ga.js). I just got the upgrade about an hour ago and, after taking a look at some of the advanced segmentation tools, it seems like it works fine. I looked, and failed, to find an answer to this question about the old tracking code at the Google Analytics blog so I thought it worth posting about this now. I’ll post more about the new functions as I experiment with them.