Science news

National Student Fee and Support Systems in European Higher Education

The levels of student tuition or administrative fees, grants and loans highlight stark differences across Europe, according to a report published on 22 October by the European Commission's Eurydice network. The report, which covers 33 European countries, reveals that fee systems have remained relatively stable across the continent, despite some notable exceptions. Germany is the only country to recently abolish tuition fees, despite introducing them only in 2007.

Improving the quality of teaching and learning in Europe’s higher education institutions

Recommendations:

    The European Commission should support Member States in developing and implementing comprehensive national frameworks for diversifying provision and integrating new modes of learning and teaching across the higher education system. It should promote mutual learning on key aspects including skills development, infrastructures, legal frameworks, quality assurance, and funding, in particular by exploiting the potential of the Erasmus+ programme.

Policies put the EU on track to meet its 2020 climate and energy targets but bigger push needed for 2030

European Union (EU) greenhouse gas emissions fell almost 2 % between 2012 and 2013, putting the EU very close to its 2020 reduction target, according to new analysis from the European Environment Agency (EEA). The EU is also on track to meet two other targets to boost renewable energy and energy efficiency by 2020.

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Varying planetary heat sink led to global-warming slowdown and acceleration

A vacillating global heat sink at intermediate ocean depths is associated with different climate regimes of surface warming under anthropogenic forcing: The latter part of the 20th century saw rapid global warming as more heat stayed near the surface. In the 21st century, surface warming slowed as more heat moved into deeper oceans. In situ and reanalyzed data are used to trace the pathways of ocean heat uptake.

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