Tag: student

One minute silence against violence

The European University Association (EUA), with support from the European Student Union (ESU) have called higher education institutions, student unions and other organisations across Europe to stand united for one minute silence on Monday 27th of April 2015  (12:00 CET) in remembrance of the 147 students killed at Garissa on 2 April 2015.

The role of education in military conflict and the attacks on educational institutions also led to the adoption of the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack in 2014. Read more here.


Leslie Wilson, the secretary general of EUA commented on this: “While the events in Garissa stand out in their barbarity, we draw attention to the appalling reality that attacks continue to happen every day. Attacks on universities, their students and scholars weaken or obliterate academic freedom; have a devastating impact on research, teaching and access to education; and impair society’s long-term development. Safeguarding the freedom and safety of universities and university communities is therefore vital in ensuring the advancement of knowledge and the cultural and scientific development of humankind.

Join the ESU event here

The European Student Union has also encouraged to support Kenyan Red Cross who has provided help to the survivors and families of the victims. We would also strongly encourage you to consider this.


Student blogger: International students and democratic deficit?

Enzo Rossi  (University of Oslo)

Enzo Rossi
(University of Oslo)

This guest entry is written by Enzo Rossi, who is a current student of the HEM programme, a former full-time student representative, and the co-founder of Internationalista, a platform that aims at increasing international students’ awareness of democratic processes and  involvement in governance at the University of Oslo. 

Are international students disproportionately underrepresented in formal governance, decision-making and leadership positions? Data for Norway seems to suggest that this is the case for all Norwegian Universities except Stavanger!

Democratisation has been hailed as one of the benefits of student mobility (Guruz, 2008). International students are expected to gain democratic principles from their adopted countries and go back home with an increased respect for democracy and a desire to uphold the rule of law and participate governance and decision making processes, becoming a positive influence for their community. But how can this be operationalised? How can democracy become an integral part of a study programme? One of the easiest ways to involve foreign students in democracy in their place of study is through being involved in student democracy.

Enzoblog2Norway has a long democratic tradition in its universities, and all decision making bodies must have student presence. Norwegian Students’ Unions have a pretty homogeneous way of doing things, they elect representatives for their “student parliament”, the highest decision making body for students, from different political factions present on campus. Several of those are linked to specific political parties and others are based on faculties or interests. Those elected then in turn elect students to take a paid sabbatical year working at the student parliament.

Hedda podcast: Recent trends in student engagement with Dr Manja Klemencic

Episode 43 of our podcast series features Dr. Manja Klemenčič from Harvard University. In the podcast, we talk about student engagement as a research area, some of the important aspects on the research on this topic.

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Dr. Manja Klemenčič (Harvard University)

Dr. Manja Klemenčič
(Harvard University)

Dr. Manja Klemenčič is employed as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Sociology at the Department of Sociology, Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University, and holds a PhD in International Studies from  University of Cambridge (Corpus Christi College). Her core research interests are focused on student engagement and student governance as well as the organisation of student politics. She is currently working on  the book Student Power in Europe, as well as co-editing a volume on Student engagement in Europe: society, higher education and student governanceFrom 2014 she is also the editor-in-chief of European Journal of Higher Education.

Click here to view an earlier presentation by Dr Klemenčič at a HEIK seminar in Oslo.

HEIK seminar with Professor Karen Jensen: Horizontal knowledge dynamics and the initiation of students in expert cultures

Professor Karen Jensen  (University of Oslo)

Professor Karen Jensen
(University of Oslo)

We are pleased to share yet another session from the HEIK academic seminar series in the field of higher education, with both invited international speakers and members of the research group HEIK (Higher Education: Institutional dynamics and Knowledge cultures) here at the University of Oslo.

This lecture was recorded in November 2013 and features Professor Karen Jensen (HEIK/FALK, University of Oslo) who discusses horizontal knowledge dynamics and initiation of students in expert cultures.

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Abstract for the session: 

How do students view quality in higher education? Results from a new survey by ESU

ESU-logoThe European Student Union (ESU) is a body representing over 11 million students through its 47 member organisations in 39 countries. ESU engages in debates about higher education in European policy arenas, but also engage in research projects relevant to student interests in higher education. One of such research projects is the Quest for Quality for Students project, or QUEST for short, funded by the European Commission and set to finish this autumn.

Fernando Miguel Galán Palomares, ESU’s Vice-Chairperson and main coordinator of the project said in the press release: “One of our goals throughout this project has been to raise awareness about the understanding of quality from students’ point of view.  QUEST has been able to perform a pan-European analysis on the students’ perceptions on the quality of higher education. The aim is to shed light on this field and to map interesting patterns that pave the way for further investigationThus, the findings can be taken into consideration and influence discussions on higher education, having a positive effect on it and improve its quality.”

The first results of the survey conducted in Germany, Latvia, Norway, Poland and Slovenia were published earlier this month in a report by Jens Jungblut and Martina Vukasovic. The project is focused around three key questions:

  • What is the students’ view on quality of higher education?
  • Do quality assurance mechanisms at European, national and institutional level actually enhance quality in the understanding of students?
  • What sort of information do students need to be provided to them in relation to what they perceive as quality education?

Call for contributions: upcoming book on student governance

studentsAre you working with issues on student governance? A call has been announced for contributions to a book on themes concerning student engagement in contemporary Europe. The broad key themes include:

  • Students’ role in the society: democracy and social justice
  • Student influence on higher education (institutional, national and European level)
  • Student governance on institutional, national and European level

The editors welcome contributions (3000-5000 words) in the following categories:

  • Analytic research articles describe an existing situation (e.g., a policy, organization, or concept), and use that description for some analytic purpose: respond to it, evaluate it according to some specific criteria, examine it for cause-and-effect linkages, contrast it to what happened elsewhere, to what might have been, or to what we have today.
  • Best practices articles focus on offering straightforward, actionable advice on various topics pertaining student unions or student movements.
  • Policy Briefs feature synopses of key policy analysis intended to frame issues, inform decisions and guide policy action in the intersection between research and policy. The article should start with an overview of recommendations, methodology, and a roadmap, not with background material. Article structure should be designed considering findings and recommendations, not according to the steps in your research journey.

For more detailed information about sub-themes and the book outline, see the extended call for proposals (pdf).

Please send your proposal on the attached form (see the extended call for proposals file) containing an outline of the intended article (max 400 words) and your CV or biography by 1 June 2013 to manja.klemencic@gmail.com or rok@esu-online.org and mention in message subject: “CoE book submission”. Authors will be notified by 15 July 2013. Final articles are due 15 December 2013.

HEIK seminar: University of California – Challenges to mass education in the US

We are pleased to share yet another session from the HEIK academic seminar series in the field of higher education, with both invited international speakers and members of the research group HEIK (Higher Education: Institutional dynamics and Knowledge cultures) here at the University of Oslo.

This lecture was recorded in March 2013 and features Prof. Steven Brint (University of California Riverside) who examines the challenges of mass education in the US.

Professor Steven Brint (UC Riverside)

Professor S. Brint

Abstract for the session: Mass access combined with declining requirements and student utilitarianism has led to increases in the size of academically disengaged undergraduate student populations in the United States. This paper presents a method for conceptualizing and measuring these populations. It measures the size and characteristics of academically disengaged populations in a major public research university system, the University of California, and it discusses approaches that can be useful as means to re-engage these students in academic life. The paper briefly discusses the likely implications of mass online higher education within the current context of undergraduate student life.

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Read more about Prof. Steven Brint here.

Gender equality and higher education

pic_womanToday, on 8th of March – International Women’s Day, is perhaps a good time to re-examine the current situation of women in higher education. With decades of focus on emancipation and womens rights in large parts of the Western world – where do we stand on this issue?

Women in higher education and research has received some attention during recent year in Europe. Perhaps the most widely debated recent case is the “Science, its a girl thing!” campaign from the European Commission that received widespread criticisms and arguably did not really further the gender equality agenda, but rather re-emphasized existing stereotypes. A number of initiatives have been emerged in recent years related to women in research, and the topic has also received attention on European level, where the 2nd Gender Summit was held in the end of November.

The question of glass ceilings and speculations around the reasons why women are still underrepresented are still debated (see for instance a guest entry by dr Joanne Pyke on the Hedda blog examining the Australian case), however, recent research by Allison K. Shaw and Daniel E. Stanton  suggest that when analyzing the data over 30 years in the USA, the trend is that the role of gender is diminishing and the issue points lie in the choice of undergraduate field and application rates to tenured jobs There is further research that has suggested that it is not so much discrimination but aspects related to family life that would lead to less women applying for tenure positions.

Chronicle: Student Study Trip to Brussels

In this post, Hedda master student Lisa Brockerhoff writes about the Hedda group study trip to Brussels in spring 2012. The students are given this opportunity to gain first hand knowledge about the various organisations relevant for higher education that are located there.

Hedda students on their study trip to Brussels in spring 2012

Brussels is the de facto capital of Europe and latest with the start of the Bologna Process also one of the most existing place for higher education policy in Europe. Many different organizations dealing with Higher Education are located there– so Brussels was the right place for us for our study trip. We, 10 students from the Master program Higher Education from Oslo University  spend 4 exciting days in Brussels where we meet 5 different organizations.

We arrived on Tuesday and Brussels welcome us with warm and sunny weather which stayed for the whole week which made this trip to a small summer holiday.

On Wednesday we had our first meeting at

Hedda Students: Scavenger Hunt 2012

On Friday, August 24th, all three international master programs at the Faculty of Education participated in a scavenger hunt. This was a great opportunity for all the students to get to know each other, as well as get orientated to the city. Students were given various tasks that they had to complete that took them all over Oslo, from Majorstua to Grønland to Hovedøya. At each stop, the groups had questions to answer and pictures to take. Then all the groups arrived at Peppes Pizza for a delicious meal.  The students recorded their adventures in the hopes of being the winning team. Here are some pictures from the scavenger hunt by all of the various groups.

[flagallery gid=17 name=”Gallery”] 

It was very difficult choosing a winning team.  So many teams sent in creative pictures and correct answers. But a choice had to be made so….

First, the honorable mention goes to Group 9, whose story of the adventure of the red tomato was inspiring but they were beaten ot the finish line by only one other group.

And finally, the winning group is: