USQ now hiring in mathematics and statistics

Several months ago, we reported here on the crisis at USQ regarding severe cuts in the department of mathematics and computing as part of its larger restructuring program; as a consequence, the department has shed eight net jobs (most of which by voluntary redundancies).  This was less than the number of cuts initially planned before the campaign to support the department, but still clearly a severe blow to what had been a department of about 25 staff.

However, there is now some positive news; the USQ administration has apparently realised that they no longer have enough staff to cover their needed mathematics, statistics, and computing teaching, and are now hiring the following positions:

I am told that the department is also still looking to fill a statistics consultancy position, which was introduced as part of the restructuring process.

While on the topic of academic staff positions, it seems that the forced redundancies proposed by Victoria University (that we recently reported on here) are to be converted to voluntary redundancies, and possibly reduced in number, following pressure from the NTEU, and the discovery that the apparent budget savings arising from such a program was less than expected.

Maths majors in Australia in decline

Over at the Funneled Web, fellow contributor Peter Hall reports on the continued decline in the number of maths majors in Australian universities, and a related decline in the number of high school students taking advanced maths courses.

[Update, Dec 9: By coincidence, the 2007 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) on fourth and eighth grade mathematics ability was released today.  According to the report, fourth grade achievement in Australian students has improved somewhat (just behind the United States, Germany, and Denmark, and just ahead of Hungary, Italy, and Australia), but eighth grade achievement has slipped (below Armenia, but above Sweden).]


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