2015 will see increasing competition in higher education and a shakeup of teacher education and curriculum in schools. These are our 3 predictions for 2015:
1. Overhaul of the national school curriculum – a review by Kevin Donnelly and Ken Wiltshire on the national school curriculum made 30 recommendations to government in October 2014.
The key theme of the recommendations was to streamline the curriculum and increase the focus on literacy and numeracy and Australian history.
Predictions are that the new curriculum will not be rolled out until 2016, but 2015 will see schools, universities and government focussing on teacher quality. The focus will be on not just better standards of job ready teacher graduates, but upskilling the current teaching workforce with a special focus on Science, Technology, Maths and Engineering.
The Improving STEM Education and Skills Conference , held in February, will address how to get students ready for STEM employment, improve access to STEM education from primary to tertiary education and how to improve STEM teacher quality.
2. Deregulation in Higher Education– Minister Pynne’s ambitious plans for Deregulation in higher education and the uncapping of domestic student fees was controversial in the senate and in public opinion. In December 2014 the bill was rejected by the Senate, but Pynne continues to fight, with promises of a plan B expected to be sent to senate in 2015.
The plan B will be likely to push for uncapped fees but propose measures such as scholarships and delayed HECS repayments to make it more palatable for opposing Senators. 2015 is likely to see universities continue to become more competitive as they vie for students to stay financial sustainable in an increasing competitive market. Universities will need to have strong value propositions and better adapt to the changing needs of their customers – students. The Reshaping Student Experience Conference in March 2015 will look how to understand student expectations.
3. International Education – 2015 will see Singapore and Malaysia to continue to push to become International Education Hubs . China has risen to be the 3rd largest study destination for International students. This means that 2015 is likely to see Australian Universities revisit their International Education Strategies to regain their top notch position as a study destination. Universities again will again have to develop a value proposition for International Students and differentiate themselves from competing universities and countries.
2015 will be a very interesting year for universities and schools and it could see some of the biggest reforms implemented in years. Stay posted on our conference calendar to see what conference will be able to assist the evolving landscape.
Image credit: Image http://liberalarts.udmercy.edu/programs/depts/education/