News Update November 29, 2005

CT News Update:
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News for Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2005

* U.S., India, Resolve Tech Research Collaboration Obstacles

* Swinburne Cuts Coding, Then Business Enrolment Rises

* Santa Clara U Physics Chair Named California's Best Professor

* Poor U.S. Math Achievement Starts as Early as 4th Grade

* Princeton to Host Lecture Series on Tech Entrepreneurship

* Dot Biz: Awards, Grants, Contracts in Higher Education IT

* Online Resources


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U.S., India, Resolve Tech Research Collaboration Obstacles

The U.S. and India have signed an agreement that clears
the way to joint research in new technologies, including
computer science and nanotechnologies. Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice and Indian Science and Technology Minister
Kapil Sibal signed a pact that settles long-standing disputes
on how to share intellectual property rights. The agreement
d'es not create any cross-border collaborations but d'es
free academic, corporate and government scientists to strike
what partnerships they can in basic research around space
exploration, biotechnology, energy, nanotechnology and more.

The U.S. and India have tried to foster research collaboration
since 1987. Until now, the sticking point had been how to share
licensing revenues from any "co-inventions." The new agreement
gives each nation exclusive rights to license intellectual
property in its own country, and promises to share licensing
revenues in other countries using formulas to be negotiated
on a per-case basis.

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Swinburne Cuts Coding--Business Degree Enrolments Rise

A decision by Australia's Swinburne University of
Technology to de-emphasize coding, programming, and
database skills in its bachelor of business information
systems degree has led to a 50 percent increase in
interest in the degree program. School administrators
said the reworked curriculum now adds new analytical
and business strategy coursework, including units in
enterprise systems, project management, risk and
security, process modeling, systems acquisition and
project management.

Judy McCay, Swinburne associate professor of information
and communications technologies, told Australian IT
magazine that the previous business computing degree
from the early 1990s involved programming and database
skills with some business included. "Now there's a whole
area of analysis and management surrounding information
systems, which those degrees were missing," she said,
adding that the business information systems curriculum
now includes a requirement for only one programming subject
and one database subject.

"The previous information systems degree had been in decline
since about 2001-02," McKay said. "It would be nice to think
the rise in enrolments is an endorsement of the new degree,
but we have to do an awful lot to persuade young people and
their families that information technology d'esn't just mean

Santa Clara U Physics Chair Named California's Best Professor

Phil Kesten, associate professor of physics and chair of
the physics department at Santa Clara University (CA), was
named California Professor of the Year by the Council for
Advancement and Support of Education and the Carnegie
Foundation for the Advancement of Education (CASE).

Kesten, who has taught at SCU since 1990, is known for
innovative teaching techniques and a devotion to students.
"I'm always looking for ways to bring them into the enterprise,"
he said. "They can't be passive." For a homework assignment,
he might ask them to figure out how much it would cost to cover
the state of Nebraska in gold. "I was a lousy undergraduate
student," said Kesten. "Now I teach for the 'me' that is
sitting in those chairs...I love what I do."

Kesten has been instrumental in the development of the
Residential Learning Community (RLC) program at SCU. He
initiated the first four-year learning community, now known
as da Vinci, and is the director of the RLC program on the
campus. He is also vice president of strategic directions
for Burlingame-based Docutek, which provides e-learning
collaboration for students and libraries. It grew out of
a project Kesten started at SCU in the 1990s.

For a list of all awardees, visit:

Poor U.S. Math Achievement Starts as Early as 4th Grade

A study by the American Institutes for Research (AIR) and
funded by the U.S. Department of Education found that U.S.
students in 4th and 8th grade perform consistently below
most of their peers around the world and continue that
trend into high school and beyond. The study bucks the
"widely held belief" that U.S. students do well in
mathematics in grade school but decline precipitously
in high school, researchers said.

The study, "Reassessing U.S. International Mathematics
Performance: New Findings from the 2003 TIMSS and PISA,"
focused on students in the United States and 11 other
industrial countries. U.S. students consistently performed
below average, ranking 8th or 9th out of twelve at all
three grade levels. These findings suggest that U.S.
reform proposals to strengthen mathematics instruction
in the upper grades should be expanded to include
improving U.S. mathematics instruction beginning in
the primary grades.

"The conventional wisdom is that U.S. students perform
above average in grades 4 and 8, and then decline sharply
in high school," says Steven Leinwand, principal research
analyst at AIR and one of the report's authors. "But this
study proves the conventional wisdom is dead wrong."

Princeton Launches Lecture Series on Tech Entrepreneurship

Princeton University launched a lecture series on technology
entrepreneurship designed to connect students, faculty,
business leaders, and investors. The series will be hosted
by the university's Center for Innovation in Engineering
Education (CIEE) and the Jumpstart New Jersey Angel Network,
a capital investment firm.

The first lecturer is Christopher Dries, vice president for
research and development at Sensors Unlimited. His talk,
scheduled for today, Nov. 29, is titled, "Boom, Bust, and
Bounce ... Anecdotes of Life in a Small, High-tech Business."
The hosts expect the lectures to offer students a chance to
learn, "how innovators use technology to make a difference
in society (which is) an important part of the engineering
education at Princeton," according to Maria Klawe, dean of
the School of Engineering and Applied Science.

For more information on the series, visit:

Dot Biz: Awards, Grants, Contracts in Higher Education IT

-- The University of California inked a deal with Xerox Corp.,
to be a preferred vendor for its 10 statewide campuses, five
medical centers and three national labs. The five-year contract
could involve nearly 3,000 Xerox digital copiers and office
multifunction systems. The Xerox contract is designed to
provide the University of California system with consistent
equipment across campus locations and help students, faculty
and staff create and handle documents more efficiently.

"Since the University of California system includes a large
staff of healthcare workers, research scientists, educators,
administrators and students, we needed to establish an alliance
that could meet the wide-ranging technology and support needs
for the university," said Haggai Hisgilov, executive director
of strategic sourcing for the University of California system.

-- Sarah Lawrence College (NY) said it will begin running
Jenzabar Inc.'s Internet Campus Solution (JICS) 6.0 and
Learning Management System. The school previously created
an online community for faculty and students with Jenzabar's
EX Web product. The migration to JICS will bring Web services
to the college's administrative staff as well. Sarah Lawrence
uses a Jenzabar ERP system. JICS will integrate the administrative
and learning management systems through a portal that will unites
the campus community and provide personalized user services,
including chat and customized learning groups.

-- University of Florida's Department of Mechanical and Aerospace
Engineering said it will use Quantam Inc.'s GeoScapeSE Database
to support computer vision-based research at its Hardware-in-the-Loop
Simulation (HILS) facility. The university will use the technology
to develop a detailed synthetic environment for use in an advanced
unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) research project for the U.S. Air
Force. UAV's are becoming increasingly important in surveillance,
intelligence and precision strike applications for urban warfare
operations, officials said.

-- Western Michigan University (WMU) launched a new e-recruitment
strategy--an admissions Web site designed by LiquidMatrix. WMU said
it will launch the firm's AciveAdmissions e-recruiting system in
the next phase of its recruitment drive. The system is designed
to enable administrators to communicate directly with prospects
with the use of targeted e-mails and complete content management
integrated into SunGard SCT Banner. Matt Kurz, associate vice
president at WSU, said the school had a "very aggressive timetable"
in bringing the services together.

Online Resources

Webinar: Learning on the Go - Transforming Lives at
Coppin State University.
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White Paper: Benefits of Dynamic Signage in Higher
Sponsored by NEC

More Resources


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