Today's news

November 7, 2005

Psychiatrist faces plagiarism charge
Britain's most ubiquitous psychiatrist was yesterday at the centre of a plagiarism row after it emerged that substantial portions of an article he had written for a medical journal were copied from the work of an American academic. The article written by Raj Persaud in the February edition of Progress in Neurology and Psychiatry was withdrawn and a retraction printed, but it went unnoticed outside the mental health community.
The Guardian

Crackdown fails to stop language schools visa racket
Foreign students are obtaining visas through language schools which offer little education despite government attempts to crack down on such bogus colleges. A Home Office task force set up last year has visited 1,200 independent "colleges" and found a quarter of them to be bogus. Hundreds were merely fronts to help immigrants apply for visas.
Daily Telegraph

New asthma drug could halve attacks
The number of people who suffer severe asthma attacks and need to stay in hospital for treatment could be halved with the introduction of a new injection treatment. Drug regulators will today grant a licence for the use of Xolair, known generically as omalizumab, as a groundbreaking treatment for asthmatics. Clinical trials suggest that the drug cuts hospital admissions by nearly half and reduces asthma attacks in patients who suffer a severe form of the condition by 55 per cent.
The Times , The Guardian , The Scotsman

Academics protest industrial relations plan
Australian academics have targeted the Federal Government over a controversial plan to tie $300 million (£125 million) of university funding to its tough new industrial relations agenda. More than 200 university professors signed an open letter titled Protect University Autonomy, which appeared as a half-page advertisement in a national newspaper today. The National Tertiary Education Union, which sponsored the letter, said the Government should keep its nose out of hiring arrangements, given that it supplies only 40 per cent of funding to universities.
Daily Telegraph (Australia)

Mysterious case of death on the Nile
Archaeologists have begun to piece together the story of a mysterious massacre more than 4,000 years ago in the former royal city of Mendes, which flourished for 20 centuries on the Nile delta north of Cairo. Donald Redford of Pennsylvania State University had begun to excavate the foundations of a huge temple linked to Rameses II when he found an earlier structure destroyed by fire, and evidence of a grisly episode of death on the Nile.
The Guardian

David Reeder: Leicester University historian.
The Independent

From the weekend's papers:


  • The universities of Glasgow and Dundee have been recognised as being among the top five institutions in the world to work for, according to The Scientist magazine. The Scotsman
  • A new scheme is giving aspiring graduate directors a rare chance to break into the film industry. The Guardian


  • The Zimbabwean president, Robert Mugabe, stands to lose his honorary degree from Edinburgh University after students began a process to strip him of the award. The Scotsman
  • Financial advice for a woman who is £29K in debt after university. Independent on Sunday

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