On Campus

Canadian academic profession is a 'monster'

Universities need to control costs by increasing class sizes and mandating a uniform curriculum, Usher

To mark its 225th anniversary, the University of New Brunswick hosted a discussion on the future of higher education Monday evening. Joining four of the province’s university leaders was Alex Usher, a Toronto based education consultant, who said Canadian universities have created a “monster” with the way professors are compensated.

He said that Canadian university professors are paid more than their public counterparts in the United States and that far too many resources have been diverted from teaching and into research. “Someone at some point is going to have to break that cycle,” he said.

To cope with an aging population, fewer domestic students, and shrinking government grants, Usher offered three suggestions. Universities need to train students who contribute to the economy, control costs by increasing class sizes and mandating a uniform curriculum, and diversify their incomes sources by recruiting more international students or setting up satellite campuses overseas.

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