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News in higher education

University of Tennessee students have earned a high ranking on a list of dubious distinction.

They have prompted the fourth-most complaints nationally from the recording industry about online music piracy.

This school year, the Recording Industry Association of America, a music industry trade group, has sent 959 notices to UT informing the university that a user on its network is offering music for download illegally. That's up from 153 notices in the 2005-06 school year.
University of Tennessee students have earned a high ranking on a list of dubious distinction.

They have prompted the fourth-most complaints nationally from the recording industry about online music piracy.

This school year, the Recording Industry Association of America, a music industry trade group, has sent 959 notices to UT informing the university that a user on its network is offering music for download illegally. That's up from 153 notices in the 2005-06 school year.

In all, the RIAA has sent out 14,646 notices to universities this year compared with 4,916 notices last year, according to data provided by the association.

"If there's one state in the nation that has a music identity, it's Tennessee," RIAA CEO Mitch Bainwol said. "Many kids that graduate from these campuses want to go into the music business. The state universities in Tennessee ought to meet a higher standard." (Knoxville News Sentinel, Feb. 22, 2007)

A new initiative designed to improve mathematics teaching and learning was highlighted last week by East Tennessee State University and Eastman Chemical Co. officials during a presentation before U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander and other leaders and educators.

ETSU's new Center of Excellence in Mathematics and Science Education is the lead player in the Eastman Scholar Mathlete Workshops, an innovative collaboration designed to enhance professional development of elementary and middle school math teachers in Sullivan and Washington counties, as well as in Kingsport.

The intensive two-week summer workshops to train teachers begin this year and will be held from June 11-22 on the ETSU campus, with 29 elementary and 25 middle school teachers participating. The summer workshops will be followed by extensive professional development and training activities for the participants throughout each academic year. (The Elizabethton Star, Feb. 22, 2007)

More than half of all students who enter college in Tennessee are not prepared academically and require at least one remedial course, according to the Tennessee Board of Regents. The problem is growing.

Remedial education costs the state more than $25 million a year and the number of students enrolled in these courses is expected to grow by about 30 percent over the next decade, said Treva Berryman of the TBR, the governing board for 19 of the state's four- and two-year colleges.

To help more students catch up for less money, the state's old-fashioned remedial curriculum will undergo the most sweeping changes in 22 years.
Recently, more than 220 developmental studies instructors from the around the state gathered at Austin Peay State University to get started on a new computer-based curriculum. (The Commercial Appeal, Feb. 21, 2007)

With most states' economies in healthier shape than they have been in years, public colleges and their students are finding plenty to cheer in the State of the State and budget addresses that governors have delivered in recent weeks to kick off legislative sessions.

Among the 44 governors who have given their customary year-opening speeches so far, more than a dozen proposed pumping large sums of money into academic research for the sake of promoting the growth of new industries, especially in the fields of energy and medicine.

Arguing that their states must do more to develop well-educated work forces, an even larger number have proposed giving public colleges large infusions of additional cash to expand or improve their academic offerings or to hold down tuition.(The Chronicle of Higher Education, Feb. 22, 2007)