Several top Czech universities have introduced new electronic tools such as
Turnitin to detect plagiarism following high-profile scandals, the daily
Over the past three years, Charles University has rejected the academic theses of nearly 50 students after software flagged their work for plagiarism, triggering a review.
Palacky University in Olomouc and Masaryk University in Brno are among the institutions of higher learning now reviewing past theses submitted over the past decade or so.
Over the past year, two government ministers were pushed to resign over allegations of plagiarism, as was the head of the Institute of World History at Charles University.
Doctoral students in the Czech Republic are complaining that they don’t
receive sufficient financial support from the state, Czech Radio reported
on Sunday. Although the government recently raised the monthly payment to
PhD students by almost 50 percent, up to 11,000 crowns (around 428 euros)
per month, many of them still have to seek extra income.
According to the data released by the Ministry of Education, the drop-out rate among PhD students is around fifty percent. Nearly 10,000 students started their doctoral studies in the Czech Republic in the academic year 2014-2015, but only 4,749 of them graduated in 2017-2018.
The Ministry of Education has fined six foreign universities or branches of
them on Czech territory, Czech Radio’s iRozhlas news site reported on
Tuesday. The universities lack the required licenses to teach in this
country. The ministry is not permitted to reveal their names.
Officials have also filed criminal complaints against two third-level institutions for failing to return admission fees paid by people who never started courses. Administrative proceedings are also being conducted with five schools.
Sixteen foreign universities have fulfilled all legal requirements to offer services in the Czech Republic and passed Ministry of Education checks.
The head of the Institute of World History at Charles University is stepping down in the wake of accusations of plagiarism, lodged by three doctoral students at the philosophical faculty. Professor Martin Kovář – who denies any wrongdoing – will also be resigning his position as vice rector, in what is seen as an extraordinary case of students holding a prominent academic to account.
Despite the Czech school system maintaining a relatively strong position in international testing, the ratio of what the country’s teachers earn in comparison to other university graduates is among the lowest in the OECD. The government’s manifesto promises to increase the amount of investment in schooling, but it will likely be a long time before the effects become evident.
Charles University is the third-best institution of higher education in
Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia, according to a ranking
published by the British educational society Quacquarelli Symonds.
The Prague-based university, founded in 1348, is on par with the State University of St. Petersburg and ranked below two other Russian universities: Lomonosov Moscow State University and Novosibirsk State University.
Ranked ninth and eleventh, respectively, are the Technical University of Prague (ČVUT) and Masaryk University of Brno. In total, eight Czech universities or colleges are in the Top 100.
When the schoolyear starts on Monday, many principals will still be searching for teachers, especially for maths and physics classes. Although better paid than ever before, the “noble profession” is attracting fewer young people, even recent grads with teaching degrees, and some retirees have been called back into service to offset the lack of qualified educators.
The health ministry is proposing to set aside an extra 6.8 billion crowns
over through 2020 for allowing four medical schools (Charles University,
Masaryk, Palacký, Ostrava) to accept more students.
Minister of Health Adam Vojtěch said action must be taken now to address a
looming, serious shortage of doctors within the next 10 years.
Of the 40,000 doctors now practising some 13,000 will be over the age of 60 as of 2020, or five years short of retirement age. Each year, about 1,400 new medical students are accepted while last year only 1,170 students graduated. Furthermore, an estimated 10-25 per cent of graduates leave the country to practise medicine.