UT researchers help the Tajiks create modern study programmes

From 20 to 27 March, the University of Tartu in collaboration with Dresden and Olomouc universities host the Tajik delegation who are coming to Estonia to explore the organisation of studies and curricula in our university.

Researchers of the University of Tartu, TU Dresden and Palacký University, Olomouc have decided to support the project for modernisation of studies in different universities of Tajikistan. The competence of the Dresden and Olomouc universities is to develop the area of the humanities (researchers of TU Dresden teach culture theory and European diversity, people from Olomouc offer language studies). The role of UT is to provide insight into social sciences. Modernisation of curricula is necessary for the graduates’ skills and knowledge to meet the needs of the present-day labour market, and the Tajikistan society as a whole.

According to Vice Director of UT Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies Olga Bogdanova, the role of our teaching staff in this project is to help the Tajiks in the development of European Union subjects. “In the course of the planned project we share our skills and knowledge so that the new curriculum would contain both innovative teaching and study methods. For example, we teach the functioning, history, processes, integration policy and geopolitics of the European Union,” Bogdanova described how the Estonians will help to create the first English-taught curriculum in Tajikistan to meet Bologna requirements.  “In addition to curriculum development, the project is a good opportunity for developing interpersonal contacts, enhance intercultural awareness and understanding,” Bogdanova added.

In Tajikistan, the old education system of the Soviet period is still used, and it does not meet the needs of the modern society. “The whole system needs renovation, particularly in the area of didactics – why and how to learn and which skills need to be developed, so that the acquired knowledge could be used later. Topics also include the skills needed in the labour market in the area of international relations and policymaking, as Tajikistan is about to actively develop their economy and relationships with neighbouring countries,” said Bogdanova. For the Tajiks, it is an extremely large-scale project, involving the country’s academy of sciences, several universities and the EU representation in Tajikistan.

The study visit to Tartu is the first experience of its kind for Tajik lecturers, because there are still very few instruments supporting mobility in their country. During the visit they meet the UT teaching staff and attend several lectures to get an idea of the possibilities and methods of teaching. In autumn the delegation of Estonia goes to an official visit to Dushanbe.

Additional information: Olga Bogdanova, Vice Director of UT Johan Skytte Institute of Polictical Science, 737 6375, olga.bogdanova@ut.ee

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