University receives almost £900k to improve teaching in Palestine
25 January 2016
Improving teaching quality in Palestine has been a focus for many organisations across the world for nearly a decade, but despite significant improvements, the performance level of Palestinian school children remains below the international average.
Teams from the Faculty of Education at Canterbury Christ Church University have been awarded almost £900,000 (€890,000 and US$300,000) in funding to lead two high profile projects to develop, strengthen and sustain the teaching quality and teaching community in Palestine.
Teaching in Palestinian school
The first project, Raising the Quality of Teacher Education Programmes in Palestine through Technology Enhanced Learning Teaching and Assessment , will be undertaken over the next three years. It aims to develop innovative primary education degree programmes in three Palestinian universities that allow students to follow specialist pathways in teaching, including: diversity, inclusion and special education needs or technology enhanced learning teaching and assessment.
It will also focus on nurturing skills in higher education teaching methods and developing practice-based research for academic staff in the Palestinian universities.
Technology enhanced learning environments comprising of state of the art Smart Learning Rooms, as well as online learning spaces, will be developed to enhance the learning and teaching aspects of the degree programmes.
The project received €890,000 of funding from the European Commission’s Erasmus+ Key Action 2 Higher Education Capacity Building project and is one of 140 projects chosen from over 500 funding applications.
Canterbury Christ Church University is the lead partner for this project working with Faculties of Education at Al-Azhar University Gaza, Birzeit University, Hebron University in Palestine, Fontys University, Netherlands and University of Eastern Finland, Finland.
From left to right: Dr. Abdullatif Abu Hijleh, President, Birzeit University and Tony Mahon, Director for International Development in the Faculty of Education at the project launch.
The second project, which has received US$300,000 of funding from the World Bank, is for the expansion of the previous Teacher Education Improvement Projects (TEIP) undertaken in Palestine between 2012 and 2015. The initial projects aimed to enhance the teaching practice of undergraduate degree programmes through staff development and develop training modules to upgrade the teaching competences of practicing teachers. The success of the project, and the impact it has had over the past three years, has led to the project being expanded nationally with three additional universities involved in teacher education.
TEIP will continue to enhance the quality of both pre-service and in-service teacher training through wide-ranging programmes of curriculum renewal and skills development and mentor training to transform the quality and effectiveness of the entire teacher education system in Palestine.
Project Leader for both projects, Tony Mahon, Director for International Development in the Faculty of Education at Canterbury Christ Church University, said: “I am delighted that we have been awarded funding to continue our work and make further contributions to improving the quality of education in Palestine.
“It is a tremendous recognition of the hard work and commitment of the Project Teams, the support of many colleagues throughout the University and our inspirational colleagues in Palestine.
“We are extremely grateful for the additional funding provided by the European Commission and World Bank. This will ensure that our work is sustainable and ultimately contributes to raising the professional and social status of teachers, positively impacting upon the quality of children’s education in Palestine for generations to come.”
Notes to Editor
Canterbury Christ Church University
Canterbury Christ Church University is a modern university with a particular strength in higher education for the public services.
With almost 18,000 students across Kent and Medway, its courses span a wide range of academic and professional subject areas.
- 95% of our UK graduates were in employment or further studies six months after completing their studies*.
*2012/13 Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey