Saturday, October 11, 2008

“People with strong numerical and problem-solving skills seem to be appreciated by employers”

Do ya think? That was a key point in a BBC News article on the overall high ranking of US and UK universities worldwide. While the usual suspects (Harvard, Yale, Cambridge, and Oxford, in that order) scored at the top of the “Times Higher Education QS list,” an increasing number of technically-oriented universities are climbing the rankings quickly.

The explanation according to the researchers?

Ben Sowter, from QS, says there is a “reasonably strong trend” of technology-based institutions moving up the world rankings.

Thirteen of those in the top 100 were strong on technology, he said…”People with strong numerical and problem-solving skills seem to be appreciated by employers.”

Such institutions seemed to be becoming more important in many regions of the world, he said.

Now see, I wouldn’t have expected that with the explosion of technology in China and India and a global market dominated by the likes of Intel, Microsoft, and Google. Good thing we have people looking into this.

One interesting point the article made, however, was the relatively minimal funding for UK universities versus their American and, more recently, Chinese counterparts:

“Harvard alone has an endowment that is about the same size as the total annual income for the whole of the UK university sector.”…”As a result of huge investment in higher education and science in recent years, China already looks set to overtake the UK very soon in terms of total research publications, and its universities have been steadily climbing up international league tables.”

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