Higher Education

Public Universities Strive to Keep Coveted Faculty Members

Thu, Aug 7, 2008

State budget woes and a rocky economy have shaken public colleges and universities in recent years. One of the most noticeable shudders, however, has been a pervasive "brain drain" at some state institutions that face competition for their best faculty members from more prosperous institutions, both public and private.

Public colleges and universities are now girding themselves to win this war for tenured talent. Chief academic officers, deans, and department heads at those institutions are using specific incentives, careful nurturing, and, of course, cold hard cash as weapons. And they are also making hard decisions about...

Long-Overdue Higher-Education Bill Is Close to Becoming Law

Fri, Aug 1, 2008

It took five years and 14 extensions, but Congress has finally cleared a bill to reauthorize the Higher Education Act, the major law governing federal student aid.

The bill, which would set federal higher-education policy for at least the next five years, easily passed the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday afternoon by a vote of 380 to 49. The Senate later approved it, 83 to 8. The bill now heads to President Bush, who is expected to sign it into law, even though his administration has criticized the cost of some of the new programs it would create.

During the House's hourlong debate, lawmaker after lawmaker...

Blackboard Says New Tool Will Synchronize With Competitor - Chronicle.com

Tue, Jul 15, 2008

Blackboard Inc. has teamed up with programmers at Syracuse University to let its course-management software connect with Sakai, a free open-source alternative. But some fans of open-source software have expressed skepticism about whether the company, which is known for its aggressive tactics, will deliver on its promise for greater openness.

Although Blackboard sells colleges licenses so that every course on a campus can use its software, some campuses that have licenses are dabbling with Sakai or other open-source software for at least a few courses or other services. The goal of the new software link is to let users...

As Economy Slumps, Donations to Colleges Expected to Slow - Chronicle.com

Tue, Jul 15, 2008

As the economy continues to be battered by rising energy costs, a credit crunch, and turbulence in the financial industry, a new forecasting tool is predicting that private giving to higher education may soon begin to suffer.

According to the Council for Advancement and Support of Education's Fundraising Index, philanthropic support for colleges and independent schools is estimated to grow 5.3 percent for the academic year that began July 1, down from the 7-percent average annual rate of growth for the last 20 years.

John Lippincott, the council's president, introduced the index and its initial results at the group'...