The Academic Excellence Unit and Quality and Development Deanship at Islamic University of Gaza organised an International Symposium on New Teaching Approaches in Higher Education on 19 March 2019. The symposium was organised in cooperation with Tampere University in Finland within their eTraining FinPal cooperation project.
Dr Nazmi Al-Masri, the local project coordinator, presented the eTraining FinPal project in his opening speech and welcomed the participants.
Dr Camilla Østerberg Rump, Associate professor at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, joined the symposium via online video-conference connection. She presented a pedagogical development programme organised by the University of Copenhagen and research conducted before and after the programme. She introduced the student-centred and teacher-centred approaches to teaching and their connection with the academic pedagogical development. The research findings illustrated the tendency for the academics participating in the development programme to move from teacher-centred towards student-centred approach in their teaching. Dr Rump noted that students are more likely to adopt deep approach to learning when their teachers apply student-centred approach to their teaching.
An online panel discussion followed the introductory presentation by Dr Rump. Dr Vesa Korhonen, Dr Jyri Lindén and Dr Pauliina Alenius (Tampere University eTraining FinPal team) joined Dr Rump in the panel discussion moderated by Vesna Holubek, researcher in Tampere University. The panel discussion addressed several topics: comments and reflections on Dr Rump’s presentation, the meaning of teaching approaches in relation to professional development of academics, examples of professional development practices in Nordic universities, latest trends in pedagogical development in European universities.
In the open discussion that followed the online panel, the symposium participants raised interesting questions and reflections related to approaches to teaching in higher education. The online panel and open discussion were consecutively translated to Arabic.
The second symposium session focussed on discussing the applicability of the international practices in Palestinian context. The academics who participated in the FinPal Training of Trainers shared their experiences and reflections on pedagogical development of Palestinian academics. Prof Alyan Al-Holy from IUG moderated the second session.
The symposium gathered around 50 participants, IUG students and staff, as well as the participants from other universities in Gaza. Several representatives of other education institutions in Gaza and the Palestinian Ministry of Education were also present.
International Symposium at IUG 19.3.2019