The second round of FinPal pedagogical training started with an opening event held on 29 July 2019 at Islamic University of Gaza. A group of vice presidents for Academic Affairs in Gazan universities attended the event together with IUG faculty deans, FinPal project team and programme’s trainers and trainees.
In his opening speech, Dr Salem Hellis, Vice President for Academic Affairs at IUG, pointed out that the training programme is one of the most significant outcomes of the FinPal cooperation project. Dr Nazmi Al-Masri, local Project coordinator, emphasized that the programme is a result of close cooperation between the project members in Tampere and Gaza. Dr Alyan Elholy, the project’s Performance appraisal coordinator and researcher, highlighted that ‘Excellence in Higher Education Skills’ is a continuation of FinPal cooperation that aims at improving the teaching skills and developing pedagogical competencies of academics working at Palestinian higher education institutions.
A trainer in the programme, Dr Faten Abu Shoga, shared her experience of promoting student engagement by applying innovative teaching methods in her course. Dr Refaat Alareer, also a trainer in the programme, pointed out that the major goal of the training is to enhance the quality of academic teaching in Palestine by sharing the Finnish experiences and enhancing pedagogical cooperation across the Palestinian universities. The trainees welcomed the initiative, highlighting that FinPal training offers a rare opportunity to participate in a programme aimed at both enhancing the academic teaching competencies and encouraging cooperation among Palestinian universities and colleges.
The training programme ‘Excellence in Higher Education Skills’ is organised by IUG’s Academic Excellence Unit in cooperation with Academic Affairs and the Quality and Development Deanship. Nine trainers who completed the FinPal Training of Trainers (Aug 2018 – Jan 2019) jointly designed the training programme with the support of FinPal project team. The first training sessions were held on 3 August 2019 led by the team of nine IUG trainers. 121 academics from eight Palestinian universities and colleges participate in the programme that will cover four main themes: (1) Student learning and engagement, (2) Designing learning processes and environments, (3) Special features of teaching in university, (4) Expertise in academic teaching in higher education. The 60-hour training programme will continue until 25 September 2019 after which a joint certificate from the Islamic University of Gaza and Tampere University will be awarded to the trainees.
Opening event of the second round of FinPal training at IUG (29 July 2019)
Training sessions of the second FinPal training at IUG (3 August 2019)