Update: 13:10

September 27, 2002

A-level controversy report expected today
The inquiry into this summer's A level controversy will recommend that some entries may have to be regraded, PA News reported today. Inquiry chairman Mike Tomlinson's report will also say there has been no political interference in the exam process by education secretary Estelle Morris, and that Qualifications and Curriculum Authority chairman Sir William Stubbs acted within his powers as regulator, according to sources. However, the report will also say that Sir William acted in a way that was perceived by the boards as putting pressure on them to get tough on grades. But the report will say that he was trying to maintain standards from year to year. The report is thought to say that the problems that have engulfed A levels this year arose from the fact that the new version of the qualification introduced in 2000 was complex and there was disagreement, and misunderstanding, about how it should be interpreted. The chief executives of the three boards Oxford and Cambridge and RSA (OCR), the Assessment and Qualifications Alliance (AQA) and Edexcel were also found by Mr Tomlinson to have acted within their powers under the exams code of practice. The report is being published later today.

Suffolk campus could be set up in Ipswich
Suffolk could be in line to get its own university campus capable of catering for 8,000 students. Norwich-based University of East Anglia officials said "early discussions" were taking place about setting up a campus in Ipswich.

Northern Ireland campus project to be reviewed
Northern Ireland's minister for employment and learning, Carmel Hanna, is launching an urgent investigation of the Springvale campus project involving Ulster University and the Belfast Institute of Further and Higher Education following concerns about its affordability and long term sustainability. Gerry McKenna, UU's vice-chancellor, said it would participate "fully and enthusiastically" in the review.

Central Scottish airport feasibility study announced
Edinburgh and Glasgow universities are to carry out a joint feasibility study into the potential benefits of a central Scottish airport replacing both Edinburgh and Glasgow airports. The researchers believe a high-speed rail link between the two cities via a new central airport has potential advantages over the alternative of links to two separate airports, and avoids the potential pool of air passengers being divided.

Arizona State tops Playboy 2002 party list
Arizona State University is Playboy's top party school for 2002, in the first rankings conducted by the magazine since 1987.

Australian v-cs focus on student financial support
Australian vice-chancellors have called for a fresh look at student financial support in a submission to the government's review of higher education, issued today.

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