Tuesday, April 25, 2017
To make things more bizarre is the opening of Enoia (not sure if I get the spelling right) JC just a year ago and now closed shop. Anyone worry about the money wasted? We are not talking of closing of one JC but 4 JCs. Did anyone see this coming? Why, suddenly Rip Van Winkle woke up and found that there is not enough enrolment for JC classes and 4 JCs are redundant, with excess capacity that may turn out to look like ghost colleges, JCs without students?
When the MOE was split to be helmed by two full ministers, everyone would not be wrong to think that this education job is expanding, growing so big and one minister would not be able to cope with the workload. How is this closing of 4 JCs related to the need for two ministers in MOE? If there are not enough students for JCs, would it also mean that more secondary and primary schools would also be facing the same problem and more would also have to be closed or merged? Read somewhere that 28 secondary schools would also be merged.
What happened to all the students that are supposed to fill up the JC places and also the primary and secondary schools? They did not build all these schools without planning, without knowing how many students are coming on board. Did the students disappear overnight like MH370? How can, the Population Dept and MOE must have been tracking the numbers and know exactly how many students were there and how many schools and JCs would be needed. Why like dat one?
I thought about this problem very seriously and came out with a few possible answers. I am not going to blame on twits that could not plan or did not know what was happening and how many students were there that need to go to school but the twits did not know. My first thought is that the thousands of scholarships to foreign students, paid by our tax payers in the billions, must have been frozen. This could be a possibility and could explain why suddenly there is no student or not enough students overnight. Overseas students can come in or not come in like turning on/off a tap.
Another possible answer, many are going to India to have their education to make sure that they could get a decent job here after graduating from the Indian universities. Why not, all the talents here are from India and Indian universities, the professionals, the academics, the IT experts and what nots, are all from India. Their education system is world best, proven and endorsed by Singapore. So many students must have jumped ship and enrolled in Indian JCs and subsequently planning to go on to Indian universities.
Another possible reason, many may have taken the advice of our ministers that there is no need for a good degree that cannot be eaten. What is the point of a degree when one aspires to be a taxi driver or a hawker? So the parents and students are now wiser and stopped enrolling into JCs here and waste precious money or forcing their parents to sell their homes to finance their education abroad.
Maybe there are other reasons for the sudden disappearance of JC students, but these are the dumb reasons that I am able to think of for this fiasco or shall I call it miracle, another planned miracle that is uniquely Singapore? Is it so difficult to know how many students are out there that need places in schools and JCs? Would big data help?
Wednesday, February 08, 2017
Thursday, February 02, 2017
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Sunday, October 16, 2016
Monday, October 10, 2016
Thursday, June 02, 2016
Sunday, April 17, 2016
Monday, March 28, 2016
The other 2 Universities, the Singapore Management University (SMU) and SIM University, did not participate in “The Big Lie” propagated by such annual beauty contests of Universities.
It is common knowledge that QS methodology contains serious fundamental conceptual and methodological flaws to render QS Rankings practically useless, irrelevant and immaterial for any serious educational policy purpose. Under scrutiny, the QS Ranking Methodology should have failed to withstand the penetrative professional scrutiny of truly Top Academics and Research Institutions like NTU and NUS, who instead now endorse the spurious Rankings results so as to position themselves dishonestly in full knowledge of the lack of validity and reliability of their proxy measures and methodology.
In return for dancing and cavorting with bogus University Rankers like QS and THE, we received for our legacy excellent Universities a Brand of Questionable Authenticity. This is a disservice to Singapore and Singaporeans.
By embracing misleading University Rankers like QS and THE, NTU and NUS administrators, senior manager and Professors have been disingenuous and unprincipled in conferring legitimacy on the meaningless results of what essentially are bogus ranking standards of dubious University excellence.
The successful Annual seduction of NTU and NUS by “beauty contest” University rankings can only be attributed to either sheer mindless stupidity, or the abject ignorance of rigorous, sophisticated and transparent scientific research methods.
In fact, one of QS’ competitors, the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Ranker, had in fact pointed out that QS employed a “very, very weak and simplistic methodology” to assess universities worldwide. According to THE, the QS’ “weak” methodology has actually ranked undeserving Malaysian Universities to be of world-class status when they were “way off” from being so, and thereby gave Malaysian education authority an “over-optimistic, distorted” idea of how local varsities actually fare.
All the World University Rankers use different factors and criteria to “measure” University excellence. None has any scientific basis for their choice of proxies for University quality. None have in fact published their methodology nor subject it to the vigorous due diligence expected of a simple research paradigm.
No wonder the United Nations education body, UNESCO, concluded that “these rankings are of dubious value, are underpinned by questionable social science, arbitrarily privilege particular indicators, and use shallow proxies as correlates of quality”.
Actually, QS themselves have "been surprised by the extent to which governments and university leaders use the rankings to set strategic targets. We at QS think this is wrong. …" And added: "Ranks should not be a primary driver of university mission statements and visions. …. "
NTU became a full-fledged University in 1991. It is noteworthy that by April 2001, NTU's research had resulted in 20 spin-off companies with many funded by venture firms, with 150 disclosures, 76 patents filed and 30 patents granted. The research papers of its staff and students in refereed international journals also won numerous awards in international competitions and conferences.
In the recent 8 years, NTU has re-directed its energy and resource to satisfy the bogus criteria/standard of dubious University excellence purveyed by Rankers such as QS and THE. And as it improved on its meaningless Rankings on the QS and THE, its earlier highly visible impact of entrepreneurship, patents and innovations disappeared strangely from its list of true achievements. These never returned.
The impact of NTU and NUS on Singapore students and society cannot be measured by the degrees of newly ascribed dubious proxies of excellence defined by bogus “World University Ranking” Standards. It can only be measured in terms of their contribution to the happiness and well-being of stakeholders and of the Singapore and global communities to which we belong and serve.
It is more important what we think of our own Universities and what they have achieved for our young people, our communities and our nation. What foreigners think of us using irrelevant and bogus criteria should not make us unhappy.
A University’s contribution to society is its sufficient measure. The important thing is to let other people think whatever they want, and not to lose one’s self-esteem by letting others diminish the accolades of our genuine acclaims and true achievements, so that we can lend them our excellent reputation of authenticity and honesty to cover up their lack of credibility, validity and reliability.
Thursday, March 10, 2016
students must be in déjà vu with the recent announcement by the Dean of NUS Law
Faculty that there will be more First Class honours graduates from the
faculty. Now, how can they be so sure
that there will be more First Class honours graduates? Are they going to teach
them better or are they going to admit more better grade students and coach them
better to get the First Class honours? It is quite easy really, no need to work
so hard or teach so hard.