In November, six colleagues (Palestinian partners visit Shakespeare country!) from Birzeit University and Hebron University in Palestine visited CCCU on a Study Visit as part of the European Commission Erasmus+ funded “Raising the Quality of Teacher Education Programmes in Palestine Project.” This was a study visit with a difference. Read More
When it comes to quality in education, teacher training is of the uttermost importance ( Time to teach the teacher ). By funding projects aimed at improving the pedagogical skills of teachers both within and outside Europe, Erasmus+ is helping raise the quality of education around the world.
is doing just that. With funding from the ‘Capacity-building in Higher Education’ action of Erasmus+, a British coordinator, together with a Finnish and Dutch partner, is working with 3 Palestinian universities in Gaza and the West Bank to reform their Primary Education degree programme.
Time to teach the teacher: an example from Palestine
Following a needs analysis, the new programmes are being built to include more technology-enhanced teaching, learning and assessment, in addition to promoting social inclusion in the classroom. Among the targeted universities, the revamped degree programmes will be more student-centred, interactive and include state-of-the-art pedagogical skills. To promote links between theory and practice, courses will be designed to showcase the experience of teaching in a classroom.
One partner working on the project has attested to the fact that ‘RQTEPP is truly a ground-breaking project that is contributing immensely to upgrading the design of teacher education degree programmes in Palestine to international standards’ and that the courses ‘are the first of their kind in Palestine, and are already causing great excitement among students’.
Complementing the main initiative, a capacity-building programme in research is also included so that staff can keep up-to-date with the latest developments in teaching and learning and, ultimately, continually improve their courses. Almost one-third of the project budget is being used to fund equipment such as a tailor-made digital learning platform for the programmes and learning rooms in each university.
The project coordinator, Tony Mahon of Canterbury Christ Church University (UK), believes that ‘the process of working collaboratively with counterparts in the Palestinian universities to create innovative new degree programmes has challenged the existing knowledge, skills and assumptions about teacher education of the CCCU team of colleagues and provided exceptional capacity-building which benefits our own degree programmes’.
You can read more about the project on RQTEPP-TELTA.
Each year, Erasmus+ selects around 140 capacity-building projects which improve teaching and management in higher education institutions so that they can play their part in their country’s development. Projects are selected under the annual Erasmus+ call for proposals, issued each October.
Projects are selected under the annual Erasmus+ call for proposals
Tony Mahon, Claire Hughes-Lynch and Lorna Hughes from CCCU and Antti Ronkainen from UEF met with colleagues at Hebron and Birzeit University to continue work on WP1, WP2 and WP6. Tony Mahon worked with colleagues to develop programme handbook, year handbooks and course outlines. Claire Hughes-Lynch, Lorna Hughes and Palestinian colleagues developed a range of new courses for the Diversity, Inclusion and Special Education Needs track ready for next academic year. Antti Ronkainen worked with the WP6 teams to finalise aspects of the tender for equipping the Smart Learning Rooms and map out options for the training manuals
Bart Coppes and Stefan van Beurden travelled to Hebron and Birzeit Universities to continue work on developing courses for the WP2 TELTA track. Progress is good and most of the courses are now developed and ready to be offered to students in the upcoming academic year.
One of the undoubted highlights of the visit was Stefan’s workshop for students at Birzeit University on ICT tools and gamification which generated a great deal of excitement at the possibilities technology offer to education.
Seven colleagues from the three partner universities in Palestine visited Christ Church University Canterbury to work on WP1 BA Education degree programmes and WP4 Higher Education capacity building.
An intensive and varied programme was provided which included visits to a range of university sessions to observe different approaches and styles of pedagogy and discuss benefits with academic colleagues. Significant progress was made in identifying a range of competences for teacher educators in Palestine. All felt that this was an incredibly useful outcome and colleagues returned to Palestine with an action plan to try out new and innovative practice. Colleagues also started work on developing programme handbooks.
Bart Coppes and Stefan van Beurden travelled to Hebron and Birzeit Universities to finalise details for the Introductory course and the first two courses of the TELTA track.
Viv Wilson and Tony Mahon held meetings and delivered workshops for University colleagues in the West Bank and Gaza aimed at developing capacity in Higher Education pedagogy and developing aspects of the BA Education degree programmes
Colleagues from UEF, Hebron and Birzeit University travelled to Fontys University to take part in workshops for Technology Enhanced learning teaching and assessment.
The team were able to participate in an annual children’s media festival and also visited local primary schools.