IUG-TAU Symposium: New Teaching Approaches in Higher Education

24 - Mar - 2019

In collaboration with Tampere University and University of Copenhagen, Denmark; the IUG Academic Excellence Unit did organize an international symposium, entitled "New Teaching Opportunities in Higher Education". This event comes as part of e training FinPal Project to Develop Pedagogical Practices in Palestinian Higher Education, which funded by the Official Development Aid from The Ministry For Foreign Affairs Of Finland. The " Online Training of Trainers: Initiative to Develop Pedagogical Practices in Palestinian Higher Education" project is a fruitful outcome of the development cooperation between higher education in Transition research group operating at Tampere University in Finland and the Academic Affairs of the Islamic University in Gaza.


This project tries to advance the pedagogical competencies and academic teaching capacity of staff members at the Islamic University of Gaza. Furthermore, it works on establishing a university pedagogy unit which would offer a study programme for the academic teaching in Palestinian higher education institutions. The supreme goal is to enhance the quality of the educational process that will lead to supporting sustainable and societal development. The e-learning FinPal project lasts three years and would have been finished by March 2022.


This symposium had fruitful experiences for improving higher education. The University of Copenhagen has developed a one-year intensive programme which works on investigating teachers' methods of teaching. Prof. Camilla Rump, Associative professor at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark; mentioned that the programme encompassed three categories of teaching methods that teachers use in the educational process: teacher-centered teaching, teacher-student Interaction teaching, and student-centered teaching.


The first category is a strategy used to disseminate information to students; thus, teaching is a mean for publishing information. The second category is a strategy that enables students to acquire the main concepts of their majors. The last strategy aims at altering concepts and images of the students. It's revealed that the student-centered teaching method proves worthy learning outcomes and uses deep learning style. While the teacher-centered teaching method is of a superficial learning pattern and has low learning outcomes. Therefore, the focus is given to the student's centered approach as a mean to enhance academic achievement in Denmark. Prof. Rump, in addition, spotted lights on the results of some research that attach great importance to higher education and conducted mainly on the university courses.


The Agenda of this symposium included a panel discussion moderated by Ms. Vesna Holubek, Researcher and Assistant Coordinator for FinPal project, in participation with the teamwork of Tampere university  included Dr. Vesa Corhonen, Dr. Jyri Linden, and Dr. Paulina Alienius. The second session moderated by Prof. Alyan Al-Holy from IUG was entitled, "Employability of Best International Practices into Palestinian Context". The participants presented a number of pedagogical experiences in training teachers in Palestinian Higher education.