Dutch lawmakers adopt net neutrality law

The Netherlands on Wednesday became the first country in Europe, and only the second in the world, to enshrine the concept of network neutrality into national law by banning its mobile telephone operators from blocking or charging consumers extra for using internet-based communications services like Skype or WhatsApp, a free text service, reports the New York Times. The measure, which was adopted with a broad majority in the lower house of the Dutch Parliament, the Tweede Kamer, will prevent KPN, the Dutch telecommunications market leader, and the Dutch units of Vodafone and T-Mobile, from blocking or charging for internet services…

Click here for the full story

tags

Stanford students can opt for time-outs

More than 1,700 students crossed the stage Sunday to receive one of the most prestigious documents in academia: a Stanford University degree. But some in the class weren’t there, having chosen to pursue dreams that seemed too ripe to put on hold, reports the San Francisco Chronicle. At Stanford, 95 percent of students complete a bachelor’s degree in six years or less. So students who “stop out,” or leave with the intention of someday wrapping up their degree, are rare…

Click here for the full story

tags

Petitioners hit the streets to stop tuition breaks for illegal immigrants

The red-and-white placards outside the Motor Vehicle Administration office in Frederick strike some as an invitation: “Sign petition here. No in-state tuition for illegal immigrants,” reports the Baltimore Sun. One after another, supporters walk up. Over the course of the morning, Carol Geisbert welcomes, among others, a Montgomery County mother of three college-bound teens, a truck driver named Dewey Sayers and a 28-year-old Frederick Community College student wearing a Beastie Boys T-shirt. Two Carroll County sisters in their 60s practically skip to the table…

Click here for the full story

tags

International college news network in the works

More than 4,000 colleges will join GCN, officials say.

Students on thousands of campuses worldwide will use a Canadian university’s ultra-high-speed internet connection to share student-made video news segments in real time, avoiding the barriers and technical glitches of traditional satellite connections.

Technology officials at Ryerson University in Toronto are building the campus-to-campus online news sharing using the Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network (ORION), an ultra-high-speed fiber optic network, and a video streaming program designed to deliver uninterrupted video communication.

In other words, Ryerson’s Global Campus Network (GCN) won’t have the video and audio delays that plague even cable news giants while in-studio anchors connect with reporters abroad. The high-speed web delay is less than half a second; satellite delays are often 1.5 seconds or longer, Grunberg said.

More than 4,000 colleges and universities are expected to contribute to GCN.

Richard Grunberg, creator of GCN and a radio and television arts professor at Ryerson – a university of about 35,000 students – said the streaming news collaboration between student broadcasters across the world will give campus-based content a home on the web.

“Students should have a voice,” said Grunberg, who has lectured at Ryerson for 20 years. “They work hard on the content they produce and it’s important for them to see productions from around the world, show their creations, and share in the production of collaborative projects.”

GCN will be supplied with video content from another attention-getting technology project, the Global City program, developed by Marion Coomey, another of Ryerson’s radio and television arts professors.

Students worldwide submit newsworthy video, audio, photos, and stories to the Global City website, which posts the material among other international content ranging from election coverage to popular vacation destinations.

GCN’s streaming technology is run by Haivision, a Canadian company that makes video equipment that allows for two-way streaming of high-definition video.

Danni Mulrennan, a lecturer at Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand, said access to GCN would give students there a chance to collaborate with college students producing video news segments in time zones a dozen hours earlier than theirs.

tags

College entrance exam ACT’s validity questioned

A new study has found that two of the four main parts of the ACT–science and reading–have “little or no” ability to help colleges predict whether applicants will succeed, USA Today reports. The analysis also found that the other two parts–English and mathematics–are “highly predictive” of college success. But because most colleges rely on the composite ACT score, rather than individual subject scores, the value of the entire exam is questioned by the study…

Click here for the full story

tags

4 reject probation deals in Columbia U. drug case

Four of five Columbia University students arrested in what authorities described as a major crackdown on drug dealing on the Ivy League campus rejected no-jail plea deals Tuesday in hopes of wiping the legal slate clean by getting drug treatment instead, reports the Associated Press. Noting the students’ previously clean records, the city Special Narcotics Prosecutor’s office said it would agree to probation if Christopher Coles, Adam Klein, Jose Stephan Perez and Michael Wymbs pleaded guilty to felony charges. But defense lawyers said their clients were drug users and would be better rehabilitated through a treatment program…

Click here for the full story

tags

University professor accused of running prostitution site

A New Jersey college professor has been arrested in New Mexico and is accused of operating a prostitution website, the Associated Press reports. David Flory teaches physics at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, N.J. On Sunday, police arrested the New York City resident in Albuquerque, N.M., on 40 counts of promoting prostitution. Police say Flory has long owned a vacation home in Santa Fe…

Click here for the full story

tags

Sony Ericsson eyes Android market with new phones

Mobile phone maker Sony Ericsson unveiled two new Android models Wednesday in a bid to grab more of the burgeoning smartphone market, the Associated Press reports. The company, a joint venture between L.M. Ericsson and Sony Corp., plans to launch the Xperia ray and Xperia active models during the third quarter, Chief Marketing Officer Steve Walker announced in Singapore. The new models should help the company expand its 11 percent market share of the Android segment, Walker said…

Click here for the full story

tags

The weirdest college classes

College is a time to expand your horizons. It is a time to explore things you normally would not explore and learn subjects you never thought you would learn, reports the Huffington Post. The courses assembled here, however, take this sentiment to a new extreme. Check out our slideshow of the weirdest college courses, and then tell us, did you take a weird course in college?

Click here for the full story

tags

More teens asking: College? Who needs it?

Nineteen-year-old Dale Stephens has founded the "UnCollege" movement, which is spreading the idea that young people are better off pursuing their dreams than going to college.

He calls it the UnCollege movement: Nineteen-year-old Dale Stephens is urging his peers to rethink the need for college, arguing that they can get more out of pursuing real-world skills than completing homework assignments and studying for exams.

“I want to change the notion that a college degree is the only path to professional success,” said Stephens, who grew up in Winters, Calif., and now lives in San Francisco, where he is building the UnCollege movement and developing a web-based company.

Stephens is part of a small but growing chorus of entrepreneurs, free thinkers, and former students who are questioning the value of higher education. The attack is coming from multiple directions: those who say college costs far more than it should; those who say students learn far less than they should; and those who argue that graduation rates are abysmal.

With tuition rising much faster than inflation, borrowing for college has reached record heights. Two-thirds of graduates now leave school with debt, with the typical borrower owing more than $34,000, according to FinAid.org, an authority on student lending.

Nationwide, student debt is likely to top $1 trillion this year—signaling to some that education is the next mortgage bubble.

The backlash against college comes, paradoxically, at the same time demand for higher education is soaring. Applications to the University of California and California State University reached record numbers this year.

But it could be that the economic downturn is responsible for both the rise in college applications—as students seek a leg up in the job market—and the sentiment that college isn’t necessary, as they take on more debt to get their degrees.

In any case, the growing anti-college movement could put campus officials on the defensive, forcing them to explain why tuition has risen so sharply in the last few decades and how their programs meet the needs of today’s students.

tags