Events archive

Managing higher education in Germany: the law, accreditation, evaluation and quality assurance

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23 November 2016 14:00 - 15:30
Seminar Room B

Speaker Dr Susan Harris-Huemmert, German University of Administrative Sciences Speyer

Convener Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education Research Group

HEIs today are held accountable for their management and the expenditure of state-provided resources. In this context Germany’s federally organized higher education system has many masters, including for example the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs of the Länder in the Republic of Germany (KMK) or the Accreditation Council (Akkreditierungsrat). Susan Harris-Huemmert (DPhil alumna 2009 and Visiting Research Fellow from the German University of Administrative Sciences Speyer) will describe the interplay between the main stakeholders in German HE, reflecting on how quality assurance systems in HE are designed and managed to take into account these stakeholders. She will include reference to various accreditation practices such as programme accreditation and system accreditation drawing on her own experience within the German HE sector.

What do undergraduate students really think about money? (Public Seminar)

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14 November 2016 17:00 - 18:30
Seminar Room A

Speaker Dr Neil Harrison, Department of Education, University of the West of England

Convener Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education Research Group

This seminar will synthesise the findings of four recent research projects focused on contemporary students’ opinions and behaviours around money.  The analysis spans both quantitative and qualitative approaches, across a mixture of single institution, multiple institution and international settings.  It will aim towards a coherent understanding of the ways in which students view debts, bursaries and their investment in higher education, problematising some of the dominant discourses of students and demonstrating a rich diversity of student experiences where personal and psychological factors contribute as much as socio-economic ones.  This will be contextualised against current policy developments and the accelerating marketisation of higher education.

Does market competition and/or the growth of participation foster diversity in higher education systems? (Public Seminar)

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31 October 2016 17:00 - 18:30
Seminar Room A

Speaker Professor Simon Marginson, IoE/UCL, Director of the ESRC/HEFCE Centre for Global Higher Education

Convener Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education Research Group

The paper returns to a long-standing issue in the literature on higher education systems, that of the relationship, if any, between diversity (horizontal differentiation based on variation in HEI mission, organisational cultures, educational practices etc), the growth of participation levels, and marketisation. The classical American literature suggested that diversity, participation and competition all tended to advance together but more recent empirical studies in the English-speaking world suggest that markets foster vertical differentiation rather than horizontal variety and encourage imitating behaviour which reduces diversity, while the growth of participation is neutral in relation to horizontal diversity. States have contrary implications for diversity: sometimes they regulate greater homogenisation, sometimes they deliberately foster variety in the form of specialist institutions or sectors. The paper surveys the world wide terrain, in which participation is rapidly advancing—in 56 countries more than 50% of the young age cohort enters higher education. It finds that the principal features of the present period, in association with growth, are  (1) the advance of the multi-purpose multi-disciplinary research multiversity as the main institutional form, (2) a secular decline in the role of non-university sectors and specialist institutions , (3) an increase in internal diversity in the large multiversities, (4) an increase in vertical stratification in many systems, (5) no increase in horizontal diversity overall and a probable decline in diversity, except for the rise of for-profit colleges in some countries.

Simon Marginson is Professor of International Higher Education at the UCL Institute of Education at University College London in the UK. He is Director of the ESRC/HEFCE Centre for Global Higher Education (CGHE), and Joint Editor-in-Chief of Higher Education. CGHE is a research partnership of three UK and eight international universities, and has £6.1 million in funding to carry out 15 projects in relation to global, national and local aspects of higher education. Simon has worked at the UCL Institute of Education since October 2013. Prior to that he was Professor of Higher Education at the University of Melbourne (2006-2013). He was the Clark Kerr Lecturer on Higher Education at the University of California, Berkeley in 2014, and in the same year received the Distinguished Research Award from the Association for Studies of Higher Education in the United States. He is a member of Academia Europaea. Simon works primarily on globalisation and higher education, international education and comparative higher education. He also researches the public good contributions of higher education, and problems of education and social inequality, and is currently completing a book with colleagues on the implications of the worldwide trend to high participation systems of higher education. His books include The Dream is Over: The crisis of Clark Kerr’s Californian idea of higher education (2016), published earlier this month by University of California Press.

How the European Bologna Process is influencing students’ learning experience: findings of a study of higher education students in Denmark

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13 June 2016 14:00 - 15:30
Seminar Room C

Speaker: Dr Laura Louise Sarauw, Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Education, DPU, Aarhus University, Denmark

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group

Policies that aim to speed up students’ pace of learning and make them employable in a future labour market play an increasingly important role in the planning of European higher education. This presentation argues that some of the main features of the European Bologna process, namely the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS), modularisation and a shift towards a competence-based curriculum, are far from being a neutral means to enhance student mobility across countries and study programmes that they were originally presented to be. Drawing on a recent large scale study of students’ responses to Bologna-related reforms of the Danish university legislation, the presentation demonstrates how these features are assembled in ways in which students are increasingly incentivised to adopt a certain kind of anticipatory behaviour, redirecting their attention from learning activities ‘here and now’ towards processes of piecing together and forecasting a particular future in the labour market.

A summary of the quantitative part of the study can be found on this webpage: http://edu.au.dk/fileadmin/user_upload/PIXI_-_Fremdrifsreform_-_ENGELSK.pdf

Identity construction and social inequality – How do first year undergraduate students construct their identities?

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26 May 2016 11:00 - 12:30
Seminar Room H

Speaker: Hannah Sloane, PhD Student, Sociology, University of Paderborn

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education Research Group

Despite growing homogeneity among students in German higher education programmes one of the most relevant factors in determining whether young people (can) decide to study is still the educational background of their parents. A person’s identity and their understanding of it usually only becomes a problem when a so-called “crisis” is experienced. The presentation aims to show how these two factors are interconnected and why it is important to have a closer look at identity constructions of first year undergraduate students to better understand the subjectivity of experiences.

How can education research influence policy practice?

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28 January 2016 17:00 - 18:30
Seminar Room D

Speakers/Panel members: 

Tom Mcbride, Head of Strategic Analysis, UK Department for Education

Alex Scharaschkin, Director of Research, AQA; Director, AQA Centre for Education Research and Practice

Ewart Keep, Director, Oxford University Centre on Skills, Knowledge & Organisational Performance (SKOPE)

Convener: Jo Thiel, Oxford Students Higher Education Research Group in association with SKOPE

As researchers, we aim to develop knowledge that will improve the human condition. This goal is hampered, however, if research is not consumed, interrogated, and used by those implementing policy. How then does research enter the policy process in practice?

This panel brings together decades of experience working at the intersection of education research and policy and will attempt to answer this key question. Drawing from their considerable experience, the panellists will describe their view of how research informs policy, and share perspectives on how researchers can better communicate and interact with policy makers and what researchers typically miss when thinking about how policy is made.

Fulfilling our potential: teaching excellence, social mobility & student choice

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15 January 2016 14:00 - 16:00
Seminar Room A

A Green Paper panel discussion convened by Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education Research Group

Panel members:

David Gibson Director of Education Policy Support, University of Oxford

Becky Howe President of OUSU (Oxford University Student Union)

Terry Hoad President of UCU Oxford (University and College Union)

Bahram Bekhradnia President of HEPI (Higher Education Policy Institute)

Andrew Boggs Head of Policy of QAA (Quality Assurance Agency for HE)

Chair: Hubert Ertl Associate Professor of Higher Education, Oxford University

In November 2015 the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) green paper entitled ‘Fulfilling our Potential: Teaching Excellence, Social Mobility and Student Choice’ set out proposals for far-reaching changes to the higher education landscape. The proposals include the introduction of a Teaching Excellence Framework, the establishment of an Office for Students, and new initiatives to increase access and success in higher education for disadvantaged and under-represented groups.

The consultation on the green paper initiated by BIS has resulted in diverse responses to the proposals by the main stakeholders (universities, unions, student representatives, etc.). On the day the consultation period for the green paper ends, this event hosted by the Higher Education Research Group brings together a panel of stakeholder representatives to discuss some of these divergent views and to contribute to the wider debate on higher education reform in England.

Contact: hubert.ertl@education.ox.ac.uk, 01865 274044 for further information

Lessons learned from scaling online college math readiness innovations

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08 December 2015 17:00 - 18:30
Seminar Room A

Convener: Joseph Thiel

Speaker Dr. John E. Cech, Deputy Commissioner of Higher Education, Montana University System  and Dr. John Matt, Department Chair, Educational Leadership, University of Montana

Abstract

The Montana University System (MUS) implemented the full statewide scaling of EdReady, a personalized college math readiness web-based intervention tool, during the 2015 academic year.  The goal of this intervention is to increase the percentage of first-time freshmen enrolling in and completing their first college-level math class. During autumn 2014, the state enrolled 1,704 postsecondary students receiving the EdReady treatment on five campuses (two and four year colleges).  The effects of EdReady were investigated using a three-part methodology, including a survey using a validated instrument to measure self-efficacy in mathematics students, comparisons of grades in the first college level course between treated and untreated students, and interviews with students, instructors and administrators.

Website: http://edreadymontana.org/

The Higher Education Access Tracker: national and institutional perspectives

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30 November 2015 14:00 - 15:30
Seminar Room G

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education Research Group Abstract: The Higher Education Access Tracker (HEAT) is a service used to enable Higher Education Institutions across England to target, monitor and evaluate widening participation outreach programs, and to track student progression from school into Higher Education and beyond. Through the development of HEAT Hubs at specific universities, HEAT HEIs are able to share best practice and contribute to research in this area through collaborative networks. The following presentation aims to provide an overview of HEAT from a national and institutional perspective as witnessed through the University of Oxford HEAT Hub.

Access to Higher Education as a policy issue: tuition fees and beyond

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16 November 2015 14:00 - 15:30
Seminar Room G

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education Research Group

Abstract:There are four dimensions to this paper. Firstly to offer an outline of the various facets of access to higher education as a policy issue.  Secondly to put forward an overview of the ends that access policy should attempt to achieve for the various parties that have a direct stake in its functioning. Thirdly to present an analysis of the changing forces that have shaped the evolution of access policy in the UK, and, finally, to support the claim that we have reached the end of the access policy trail. This is, therefore, essentially a descriptive and prescriptive approach to higher education policy-making, although not without its analytical pretensions.

Ted Tapper spent most of his academic career at the University of Sussex, starting as an assistant lecturer in the Politics department and concluding it as head of the department of International Relations and Politics.  He currently holds the title of Research Professor at the Oxfprd Cemte fpr Higher Education Policy Studies, New College.

Students' transition into the first year at higher education in Switzerland

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13 May 2015 11:00 - 12:30
Seminar Room D

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl Abstract: In Swiss Higher Education Institutions, all students who obtained the qualification equivalent to A-Levels are automatically accepted for studying. Thus, the first year at university is dominated by an assessment culture, with about 30% of the students not passing the exams. In a longitudinal study, we looked at students' motivational development during their first year at a Swiss university. The results confirm students' "transition as becoming" (Gale & Parker, 2012) and provide insights into possible support measures for first year students. About the speaker: Dr. Taiga Brahm is assistant professor for higher education development at the University of St. Gallen / Switzerland. Her research fields include teaching and learning in higher education, students' transition processes into university as well as integrating sustainable development into curricula.

Promises, promises: Have universities done what it says on the tin?

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07 March 2014 16:00 - 17:00
Seminar Room G

Conveners: Dr Hubert Ertl, Dr Alis Oancea and Dr David Mills, Higher Education Research Group An informal discussion of staff and students, with input about universities’ “transformation claims”. This event continues the discussion we have started last term, this time with a slightly more specified (but still very broad) agenda. David Watson will provide a short input to start us off. Participants might like to read this post in the Guardian Online (13 December 2013) in advance: http://www.theguardian.com/higher-education-network/blog/2013/dec/13/higher-education-impact-on-students All students and staff working on higher education are welcome – refreshments will be provided!

French secondary education: challenges to territorial equity

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11 June 2013 16:30 - 18:00
Seminar Room D

Convened by Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group and SKOPE. Abstract: The French secondary education system is often portrayed as a paragon of centralization organized around the notion of territorial equity. The talk investigates the extent to which secondary education policy has actually led to territorial uniformity. By looking at policy-making before and after the decentralization laws of the early 1980s, one shows that the central state itself has challenged territorial equity, while regional governments have developed policies that achieved uniform outputs. About the speaker: Dr Claire Dupuy received her doctorate in political science from Sciences Po Paris and from the University of Milan-Bicocca. She is currently of FRS-FNRS postdoctoral fellow in the University of Louvain (Belgium). She works on multilevel governance and is interested in regionalization processes in Western Europe. She studies secondary education policy in France, Germany and Belgium.

Examining the link between International Student Mobility and ‘brain drain’

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15 January 2013 16:15 - 17:45
Seminar Room D

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl, Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group Abstract This discussion examines the connection between academic mobility of students and the process of internationalization in higher education. As an introduction the presentation describes different types of student mobility and the importance of distinguishing between these types. It goes on to explain how student mobility is considered a vehicle of human capital development across national borders. As such student mobility is supposed to contribute to further internationalization of higher education and to facilitate the development of knowledge-based national economies. However, sometimes it is also associated with the problem of human capital flight, or ‘brain drain’ of young people into more economically prosperous countries. The discussion draws on a study on the mobility process of Latvian students studying at English universities. In conclusion this discussion examines to what extent student mobility can contribute to brain drain and what issues need to be considered while discussing this topic.

Higher education and the question of conscience

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28 February 2012 14:00 - 15:30
Seminar Room D

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group Abstract This presentation is about what higher education institutions (chiefly universities) say they have been doing for and to their most important members (their award-seeking students) and why it matters. It is intriguing how varied these claims have been over the long history of the higher education enterprise, but also by how strong and determined they invariably are. Essentially the argument here is that such claims represent a moving combination of recurrent themes, nearly all present at the creation of the modern university, and liable individually to wax or wane according to mainly (but not exclusively) external influences. Most of the claims about the purposes and achievements of higher education are irreducibly individualistic. It will change your life: through conversion or confirmation of faith; by improving your character; by giving you marketable “abilities” by making you a better member of the community, or simply “capable” of operating more effectively in the contemporary world. All of these qualities scale up, of course, but in differing ways. The presentation will examine these (and other) claims in historical and philosophical perspective.

Varieties of privatization in higher education systems

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21 February 2012 14:30 - 16:00
Seminar Room D

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl SKOPE and Higher Education and Professional Facilitation Research Group. Abstract: The current literature often claims a universal trend towards increased privatization of higher education. Different reasons are given for this, for example, the spread of neoliberal ideology, the expansion of higher education and the consequential need to raise additional resources, or the emergence of a global educational market. The dominant view is that this trend will lead to increased convergence between countries, although some authors add that simultaneously one can observe a diversification of higher education within countries. Empirical data, however, shows that there are huge differences not only in the status quo, but also in the extent to which specific HE systems are affected by these changes. This presentation will argue that some of the differences between systems can be explained, at least for developed countries, by recourse to Hall & Soskice’s Varieties of Capitalism approach. Hall & Soskice differentiate between Liberal Market Economies (LME) and Coordinated Market Economies (CME). While the former coordinate mainly through market processes, strategic coordination of collective actors plays a more important role in the latter. The dominant form of coordination is connected to other realms of society, e.g. the system of skill formation, through complementarities. In a first step, some hypotheses on how the different Varieties of Capitalism are related to a different extent and form of privatization in HE will be deduced. For example, employees need more general skills in LME, and more specific skills in CME, increasing the demand for higher education in LME, which, in turn, increases the need to find additional resources to pay for extensive HE systems. More generally, the focus on coordination through markets in LME should contribute to a marketization of education in these countries. In a second step, these hypotheses will be tested on the basis of qualitative and quantitative evidence by reanalyzing existing material (e.g. OECD statistics). In a third step, some conclusions will be drawn and the findings will be discussed in a larger context.

Exploring the idea of the New University: the 1960s and beyond

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07 February 2012 14:30 - 16:00
Seminar Room J

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group Abstract The purpose of this seminar is to outline a research project and to present current ideas of the New University with a view to receiving feedback that could help to shape the project. The proposed research will analyse the foundation and subsequent development of the seven new English universities of the 1960s: Essex, Kent, Lancaster, Sussex, UEA, Warwick and York. Arguably this was one of the most significant initiatives that the University Grants Committee undertook in its seventy year history (1919-1989). The presentation will explore why they were labelled as 'new universities' and examine the politics of their foundation. The research will follow the development of these seven universities since their foundation, although the presentation will restrict itself to offering alternative explanations of their evolution that will guide the empirical work to be undertaken. One of the key issues is whether they have retained their identities as new universities.

Public and private higher education in Europe: competition, complementarity or worlds apart? (Public Seminar)

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23 January 2012 17:00 - 18:30
Seminar Room A

Conveners: Professor Ken Mayhew (SKOPE) and Dr Hubert Ertl (Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group) Abstract Over the last half a century, European higher education has been facing significant and persistent pressures towards expansion, which have led to the emergence of mass higher education. This has raised significant challenges both for higher education institutions (HEIs) and to policy-makers. In recent decades, a major response to these challenges has been to promote the adoption of market elements in higher education systems, in particular through increased privatisation and the emergence of a private sector in several European countries. This runs against the dominant view about the way higher education should be funded and provided in most European countries. The aim of this paper is to discuss the relevance of the various dimensions of privatisation in European higher education and to explore the relationship between public and private sectors in several European countries. The analysis will illustrate one of the dimensions of that relationship by looking at the level of specialisation and differentiation of public and private sectors in Europe. The analysis shows significant differences between public and private higher education sectors, suggesting that the latter’s lower engagement in research activities is a key factor in explaining differences between private and public universities. The text also reflects on the potential role of the private sector in European higher education and the relevance of research in the consolidation of that sector.

Global pressures and local realities: European universities at a crossroads

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01 December 2011 17:00 -
European Studies Centre, 70 Woodstock Road

Discussants: Hubert Ertl Department of Education, Oxford and Kalypso Nikolaidis DPIR and ESC Fellow Chair: David Phillips Department of Education, Oxford Part of the Seminar Series HIGHER EDUCATION IN EUROPE: RECENT REFORM AND ITS IMPACT ON RESEARCH, QUALITY AND EQUITY Co-convenors: Paola Mattei, Claire Dupuy, David Phillips, Hubert Ertl

Shifting landscapes, embodied locations: Spatial perspectives on doctoral education. (Public Seminar)

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28 November 2011 17:00 - 18:30
Seminar Room A

Convener: Professor Ingrid Lunt Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group Abstract Doctoral education in the UK is changing. Research funders are seeking to concentrate their resources, fostering new training centres within universities. At the same time students and new supervisors learn to negotiate a variety of academic networks, supervisory practices and educational requirements. Attentive to institutional time pressures and the discourse of employability, students and new supervisors are also expected to 'locate' themselves strategically and intellectually. The seminar will consist of a series of linked presentations drawing on a five year programme of collaborative research into the changing landscape of doctoral education in the social sciences. Hosted by the Oxford Centre of Excellence in Preparation for Academic Practice, the 'Next Generation of Social Scientists' research project brought together more than ten research students and staff to investigate experiences of doctoral education through time, using longitudinal methods and focusing on the narratives of students and new supervisors. A particular focus for this seminar is the spatial and bodily 'identity-work' that students and early career academics engage in as they prepare for life after the doctorate. About the speakers Lynn McAlpine has, in the past five years, focused her research on doctoral student, post-doctoral researcher and new lecturer experience, both in the UK and Canada. She is particularly interested in the ways that academic work within the context of personal lives influences how early career academics imagine and construct their career trajectories. Nick Hopwood completed his DPhil on secondary school pupils' learning of geography at OUDE. He was Research and Evaluation Officer at the Centre for Excellence in Preparing for Academic Practice as Research and Evaluation Officer. In 2010 Nick moved to the University of Technology, Sydney, where he took up a Chancellor's Postdoctoral Research Fellowship. His research explores spaces, bodies and pedagogies in child and family health settings, but he keeps his doctoral 'hat' on through wide-ranging engagements with students around doctoral life, writing, and publishing. Nick never fully left Oxford, and remains a Research Fellow of the Department, and an Honorary Affiliate of the Oxford Learning Institute. When not being Director of Graduate Studies, David Mills is writing a textbook on ethnographic methods in Education. Gill Turner completed her PhD in 2001 on the self-directed professional development of tutors in further and higher education. Following this she joined the University of Oxford’s Medical Careers Research Group researching the careers of UK-trained medical graduates through the analysis of large data sets. In 2006 she accepted the position of Research Officer at the Oxford Learning Institute and currently is engaged in qualitative research exploring the experiences of early career academics.

Reforming Under Pressure. Higher Education Reforms in France (2006-2010)

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24 November 2011 17:00 -
European Studies Centre, 70 Woodstock Road

Discussant: Marie Luise Kearney OECD, Paris Chair: Claire Dupuy Deakin Fellow, ESC Part of the Seminar Series HIGHER EDUCATION IN EUROPE: RECENT REFORM AND ITS IMPACT ON RESEARCH, QUALITY AND EQUITY Co-convenors: Paola Mattei, Claire Dupuy, David Phillips, Hubert Ertl

University Rankings: The Manifestation and Driver of Competition for Excellence Within the New Higher Education Landscape

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17 November 2011 17:00 -
European Studies Centre, 70 Woodstock Road

Discussant: David Mills Department of Education, Oxford Chair: Peter Kemp OISP and School of Government, Oxford Part of the Seminar Series HIGHER EDUCATION IN EUROPE: RECENT REFORM AND ITS IMPACT ON RESEARCH, QUALITY AND EQUITY Co-convenors: Paola Mattei, Claire Dupuy, David Phillips, Hubert Ertl

Markets rule, ok? The coalition government’s reform programme in context (Public Seminar)

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14 November 2011 17:00 - 18:30
Seminar Room A

Dr Hubert Ertl Higher Education and Professional Learning Abstract Following the report of the Independent Review of Higher Education Funding and Student Finance (the Browne Committee), the White Paper Higher Education: Putting Students at the Heart of the System envisages a series of radical reforms to the UK – and specifically the English – higher education system. I propose to describe the immediate background to these reforms and then put them into a series of contexts: the evolution of government policies towards higher education since the early 1980s, the worldwide shift to marketisation, and the Coalition Government’s reforms to other parts of what used to be called the public sector. Finally I shall look at the possible consequences of the reforms in the light of what we know about the impact of markets in higher education. Download the handout

Europeanisation and Higher Education: Comfortable Bedfellows?

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10 November 2011 17:00 -
European Studies Centre, 70 Woodstock Road

Discussant: Anne Deighton DPIR, Oxford Chair: Paola Mattei OISP, Fellow ESC Part of the Seminar Series HIGHER EDUCATION IN EUROPE: RECENT REFORM AND ITS IMPACT ON RESEARCH, QUALITY AND EQUITY Co-convenors: Paola Mattei, Claire Dupuy, David Phillips, Hubert Ertl

The Value of Temporary Study Abroad: the ERASMUS Experience

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03 November 2011 17:00 -
European Studies Centre, 70 Woodstock Road

Discussant: Ingrid Lunt Department of Education, University of Oxford Chair: Martin Seeleib Kaiser Head, OISP, Oxford Part of the Seminar Series HIGHER EDUCATION IN EUROPE: RECENT REFORM AND ITS IMPACT ON RESEARCH, QUALITY AND EQUITY Co-convenors: Paola Mattei, Claire Dupuy, David Phillips, Hubert Ertl

Class and Ethnic Inequality in Educational Outcomes in an International Perspective

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27 October 2011 17:00 -
European Studies Centre, 70 Woodstock Road

Discussant: Vikki Boliver Durham University Chair: Claire Dupuy Deakin Fellow, ESC Part of the Seminar Series HIGHER EDUCATION IN EUROPE: RECENT REFORM AND ITS IMPACT ON RESEARCH, QUALITY AND EQUITY Co-convenors: Paola Mattei, Claire Dupuy, David Phillips, Hubert Ertl

Privatisation of Higher Education in Central and Eastern Europe

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20 October 2011 17:00 -
European Studies Centre, 70 Woodstock Road

Discussant: Jan Zielonka DPIR and Fellow, ESC Chair: Paola Mattei OISP and Fellow, ESC Part of the Seminar Series HIGHER EDUCATION IN EUROPE: RECENT REFORM AND ITS IMPACT ON RESEARCH, QUALITY AND EQUITY Co-convenors: Paola Mattei, Claire Dupuy, David Phillips, Hubert Ertl

Financially Sustainable Universities: Challenges and Strategies in Times of Austerity

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13 October 2011 17:00 -
European Studies Centre, 70 Woodstock Road

Discussant: Claire Dupuy Deakin Fellow, ESC Chair: Roger Goodman Head, Social Sciences Division, University of Oxford; St Antony’s Part of the Seminar Series HIGHER EDUCATION IN EUROPE: RECENT REFORM AND ITS IMPACT ON RESEARCH, QUALITY AND EQUITY Co-convenors: Paola Mattei, Claire Dupuy, David Phillips, Hubert Ertl

What is happening to the California dream? Revisiting Clark Kerr in 2011

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09 August 2011 15:00 -
Seminar Room D

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group

Workload definition in higher education: Students' learning and the discussion on comparability and transparency of study programmes

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20 June 2011 11:00 - 12:30
Seminar Room D

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl Abstract: This paper focuses on a highly topical issue in German Higher Education, namely the issue of the time which students have to invest in order to complete their Bachelor and Master Programs successfully, usually referred to as workload. This is directly related to the discourse on the outcomes of the Bologna process, following 10 years of restructuring with the aim of enhancing the comparability and transparency of study programs. This aspect is analyzed, taking into account the specific features of German Initial Teacher Education (ITE), which is generally university-based. The definition of the formal workload of each study program, of each module and each seminar within such a program was introduced with the Bologna reform process, using the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). Generally it is assumed that students should invest 40 hours work per week in their studies; 30 hours of study time are rewarded with 1 ECTS point for the student (see, for example, Wex 2005, HRK 2004). Therefore, a three year Bachelor degree is generally defined by a total of 180 ECTS points and, hence, by 5,400 hours of work; a two year Master degree is defined by 120 ECTS points and 3,600 hours of work. However, one has to make a distinction between the definition of a formal workload in study programs and the actual workload of students, and one also has to ask to what extent the formally defined workload differs from the actual one. An additional dimension that has to be taken into account is the students’ perception of the workload. The main aim of the paper is to provide detailed documentation of workload distribution, using empirical data from the Master of Education as part of ITE in the Federal State of Berlin and, hence, to question the usefulness of a formal workload definition based on the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) in terms of the comparability and transparency of study programs nationally as well as internationally. The paper analyses the actual workload of students within this study program, its allocation over time and its allocation to specific seminars and modules. Using those data, it compares the actual time investment of students with the formal workload definition of the study program. Those data are then compared and contrasted with the students’ perceived learning outcomes and their self-efficacy with regard to teaching. In addition, the data are contrasted to students’ individual context situations such as employment alongside full-time studies, as well as institutional context situations, such as specific structural aspects of the ITE study programs. The data introduced in this paper are based on a detailed online journal study that ran for six months. 40 students who were matriculated in the third semester of the Master of Education program at the Humboldt University in Berlin took part. Using the individual time-table of the students, which they had to record in great detail, an individual daily journal was constructed for each student. Students had to fill in their daily time investment in their studies, differentiated by course, the kind of work undertaken and the hours of work. Amongst other things, the journal includes questions on perceived learning outcomes based on defined Standards in Teacher Education (see KMK 2004) and scales on self-efficacy (see Schwarzer & Jerusalem 2002). The study, in addition, integrates questionnaires on, for example, the socio-economic background data of the students, their individual context situations, as well as their perspectives on the study program. Overall the study follows a triangulation method, combining both quantitative and qualitative data. References HRK (Association of Universities and other Higher Education Institutions in Germany) (2004). ECTS als System zur Anrechnung, Übertragung und Akkumulierung von Studienleistungen. Entschließung des 98. Senats vom 10. Februar 2004. In http://www.hrk.de/de/beschluesse/109_276.php, 01.05.2009. KMK (Standing Conference of Federal Ministers for Cultural Affairs) (2004). Standards für die Lehrerbildung: Bildungswissenschaften. Beschluss der Kultusministerkonferenz vom 16.12.2004. Bonn. Schwarzer, R. & Jerusalem, M. (2002). Das Konzept der Selbstwirksamkeit. Zeitschrift für Pädagogik, 44. Beiheft: Selbstwirksamkeit und Motivationsprozesse in Bildungsinstitutionen, 28-53. Wex, P. (2005). Bachelor und Master. Die Grundlagen des neuen Studiensystems in Deutschland. Ein Handbuch. Berlin: Duncker & Humblot.

Widening participation for what? Equality and quality in higher education access (Public Seminar)

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16 May 2011 17:00 - 18:30
Seminar Room A

Convener: Dr Alis Oancea, Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group in association with the Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain (Oxford Branch). Discussant: Dr Hubert Ertl This seminar will aim to untangle some of the issues of principle that underlie contemporary debates about widening participation in higher education. It will explore issues to do with the variety of forms of higher education now on offer and the extent to which they are all equally empowering; it will interrogate the assumptions underlying the ambition to 'raise aspirations' and the mis-readings of meritocracy which underpin some versions of these programmes; it will examine notions of 'adaptive preference' and the way in which they underpin the discourse of 'raising aspirations'; and it will challenge the way in which support for higher education and the rationale for who should pay the cost comes to be linked exclusively to its economic benefits. David Bridges is Professorial Fellow in the University of Cambridge Faculty of Education, an Emeritus Fellow of both St Edmund's and Homerton colleges and Emeritus Professor at the University of East Anglia where he was previously Pro Vice Chancellor. He was for six years Director of the Association of Universities in the East of England, in which role he chaired a succession of HEFCE funded regional widening participation programmes. He has conducted a succession of empirically grounded research on widening participation with Michael Watts (eg in 2004 Whose aspirations? What achievement? An investigation of the life and lifestyle aspirations of 16-19 year olds outside the formal educational system, Cambridge, Association of Universities in the East of England, ISBN 0-9547941-1-7).)as well as examining more philosophical issues raised by such programmes (e.g. in 2006 ‘Adaptive preference, justice and identity in the context of widening participation in higher education’, Ethics and Education, 1:1, 13-26).

Universities and civil society in Australia

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03 May 2011 14:00 - 15:30
Seminar Room D

Convener: Dr Hubert Ertl Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group The rise of a community engagement movement offers a range of possibilities for universities to function as ‘sites of citizenship’. These include contributing to community social and economic infrastructure, supporting equity and diversity within higher education, and education for democratic citizenship. This seminar is in five parts. The first provides an overview of the concept of community engagement based on current activities in Australian universities and other large organisations. The second provides an overview of current organisational and policy contexts for university community engagement activities. The third begins a conceptual-theoretical mapping of community engagement in universities including, and in particular, an exploration of the university as being situated within a community of 'concentric circles', including local, state, national, and international communities; the "networked" university; higher education as social practice; and sustainability and social responsibility in engagement. The fourth section outlines a number of political challenges facing those who seek to practice community engagement, including the potential for community engagement practices to privilege certain voices over others. The fifth section invites discussion on the ideas presented in this seminar.

Higher education research in Germany – the work of doctoral/post-doctoral students at the University of Paderborn

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18 March 2011 14:00 - 15:30
Seminar Room D

Convener: Hubert Ertl This seminar outlines the doctoral/post-doctoral research projects of four students from University of Paderborn, Germany. The topics are • Portfolios in development processes of student – key to success (Eva Rueschen) • Reflective Writing as a Medium in the Process of Scientific Text Production – A Didactic Approach in Higher Education (Tina Emmler) • Development of Intercultural Competence in Higher Education - Conceptual and methodological concerns in the doctoral research based on study abroad programs at the University of Paderborn (Yi Li) • Action-oriented learning in undergraduate education - A German perspective on the bologna process (Karl-Heinz Gerholz). The seminar will also be attended by two colleagues from Paderborn, Professor Peter Sloane and Professor Hugo Kremer, it is hoped the discussion will lead to a broader picture of research on higher education in the German context. Please contact hubert.ertl@education.ox.ac.uk for abstracts of the four presentations.

Modernising Education in Pakistan

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28 February 2011 15:00 - 16:30
Seminar Room G

Convener Jenny Ozga Dr Sajid Ali, the ESRC Visiting South Asian/Middle East Scholar at the Department of Education, will talk about the work of the Institute for Educational Development at the Aga Khan University, as well as providing some background on his current research on the Modernisation of Education in Pakistan.

Organisational identification in higher education contexts

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22 February 2011 14:00 - 15:30
Seminar Room H

Convener: Hubert Ertl Abstract: Universities are operating in an increasingly competitive context, regarding funding, the best students, and their reputation generally. For this reason universities aim to recruit the best students, establish strong connections to their students and keep in contact with them. Therefore, the issue of organisational identification, which is well covered in the literature on organisational behaviour, has become highly important for higher education institutions. However, research-led investigations of organisational identification patterns in higher education institutions are still rare. Findings of such research could inform a range of actors, such as executive committees of universities, alumni managers, etc. This research focuses on questions as to what extent and with what levels of the university students identify themselves. Also the research looks at the reasons for identification of students. The presentation will give an introduction to the topic as well as an overview of the methods applied.

“Yes there is an alternative”: reflections on Scotland’s higher education system

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15 February 2011 14:00 - 15:30
Tanner Room, Linacre College, St Cross Road

Convener: Hubert Ertl Abstract Recent changes in the funding of the English Higher Education System have been promoted by the Coalition Government as being the only acceptable, economic option. This presentation will challenge that position by pointing out that a Higher Education system with a different funding mechanism, different degree structure and different credit framework exists within the UK in Scotland. The historical roots, ideological positioning and organisational structure of Scottish HE will be discussed illustrating that the Scottish system has closer similarities to systems in Europe and the USA than to its English neighbour. Dr Ian Finlay spent ten years teaching in further education colleges in England and Scotland before joining the University of Strathclyde in 1990 where his research and teaching focused on further and higher education policy. He is now a Research Fellow in the Department of Education, University of Oxford and a Visiting Fellow and Farmington Fellow at Harris Manchester College. He is using his Farmington Fellowship to continue his research into young people not in education, employment or training (NEETs).

Imagining the University (Public Seminar)

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17 January 2011 17:00 - 18:30
Seminar Room A

Convener: Professor Ingrid Lunt Abstract The contemporary debate about universities and their future is hopelessly impoverished; ‘hopelessly’ impoverished because it is largely without hope. On the one hand, there are those who defend the contemporary university in its emerging form as ‘the entrepreneurial university’, at once a corporate, marketised and bureaucratic university. On the other hand, there are those who wring their hands at ‘the crisis in the university’, and limit themselves to a savage critique of the university and look back to a mythical golden age. Admittedly, not all voices are pessimistic. Two more optimistic stances are apparent. Those of a philosophical persuasion opt for a stratospheric and meta-idea of the university as a kind of ultra debating society. This idea has no content, instead concerning itself with the communicative processes that mark a ‘university’. Philosophers and theorists such as Derrida, Habermas, MacIntyre, Rorty and Readings look to the university to sustain itself as a forum for critical dialogue (‘a university without conditions’ or ‘a university of dissensus’), that is willing even to question what it is to be a university. An alternative though still more positive stance is provided by those of a more sociological and, indeed, social persuasion look to the university to enhance the ‘civic society’ through forms of civic engagement or to advance the democratic society (by, for example, exploiting the possibilities of the internet age, through the development of a ‘creative commons’) and so a new kind of ‘civic university’ is envisaged. Despite these more positive voices, the contemporary debate over what it is to be a university is limited. Most of all, it is limited imaginatively. The range of imagined options is narrow. The imagination has not been given anything approaching a wide scope. As a result, our sense as to what a university could be and could become in the modern age is itself impoverished. If we are seriously to develop a wide range of ideas of the university that is adequate to the challenges of the modern world, the imagination itself needs to be freed. There are three sets of issues here. Firstly, just what range of ideas of the university might be imagined? Secondly, how might those ideas be evaluated? Perhaps some are non-feasible; perhaps others are malign ideas; and yet others may offer ways forward to a better world. Thirdly, the role of the imagination itself: just how might it be brought into play? How can it be fully effective? Are there different kinds of imaginative activities? Perhaps some should be repudiated while others encouraged, if the university is fully to realise its potential. There are both, therefore, an openness, an anarchy, a poetry that attached to the imagination; but there are also limitations, as it struggles to anchor itself in the real world and attach itself to some values that in turn might be connected with real possibilities for action and policy.

Analysis of publication patterns in English and German educational research journals

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05 November 2010 14:00 - 15:30
Seminar Room E

Convener: Hubert Ertl, Higher Education and Professional Learning Research Group. This workshop is connected to a research project funded by the German Research Association (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft – DFG) and conducted by PD Dr. Klaus Zierer (University of Munich) and Dr. Hubert Ertl (University of Oxford). The aim of the research project is to map the publication landscape in education in England and Germany, by analysing and categorising papers published in six leading educational research journals in the two countries in the last eight years (2002-2009). For further information click here