Mason Provides Quality Assurance Training to Administrators from Kurdish Universities

Posted: June 9, 2011 at 1:01 am, Last Updated: June 9, 2011 at 4:07 pm

By Steven Harris-Scott, Research Assistant, Office of Global and International Strategies

For two weeks in early May, Mason hosted five delegates from the Kurdistan region of northern Iraq for a specially designed training program in quality assurance best practices.

Mason’s Office of Global and International Strategies and the Center for International Education coordinated the training, which was part of the Development Partnerships in Higher Education in Iraq (or DelPHE-Iraq) Program.

The DelPHE-Iraq Program, sponsored by England’s Department for International Development and managed by the British Council, supports and facilitates partnerships between higher education institutions in Iraq and other countries.

Last year, Mason’s Office of the Provost and Kurdistan’s Ministry of Higher Education submitted a successful joint proposal to the British Council to establish a system of quality assurance and accreditation for public and private universities in Kurdistan.

Mason administrators and faculty members who participated in the training included Provost Peter Stearns and members of the Office of Institutional Research and Reporting, the Office of Institutional Assessment, the Center for Teaching Excellence and the College of Education and Human Development.

Salahaddin Abdul Messiah, the delegation leader from Kurdistan’s Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, expressed his gratitude for Mason’s “overwhelmingly warm welcome” and the opportunity to “benefit from [Mason’s] experiences through the accreditation and quality assurance processes.”

Abdul Messiah added that the Kurds “have suffered from a long period of isolation from the rest of the world.” He and other delegation members hoped that their visit to Mason – the first of two scheduled under the auspices of the DelPHE Program – would help “correct” some of the consequences of that isolation for Kurdish education administrators.

In addition to Abdul Messiah, the delegates were Maysoon Tahir Al-Haideri from Hawler Medical University; Kawa Abdul Kareem Sherwani, director of quality assurance and public relations for the Kurdistan Information and Strategic Studies Center; Shler Ahmed Ibrahim Amedi from the Directorate of Quality Assurance of the University of Dohuk; and Saladin O. Abubakir, director of planning and quality assurance from the University of Salahaddin-Erbil.

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