LUMS Vice Chancellor Participates in Second HEDP University-wide Meeting
On March 18, 2022, HEC’s Higher Education Development Program (HEDP) hosted the second university-wide consortium meeting at NUST, Islamabad. Vice Chancellors and representatives from 11 universities convened to further define the road map for PakistanEdX. This national online learning platform will host high-quality asynchronous online courses as part of a new undergraduate core curriculum in the country. Representing LUMS at the meeting were Dr. Arshad Ahmad, Vice Chancellor, Dr. Suleman Shahid, Director, LUMS Learning Institute, and Dr. Muhammad Tariq, Associate Professor.
Lt. General Bukhari, Rector, NUST, welcomed the group and said, “This initiative is crucial for the long-term growth of higher education in Pakistan and beyond.”
Ms. Maryam Riaz, Project Coordinator, HEDP, shared, “Each university is doing wonderful work in their own domain. Through this consortium, we are joining hands and bringing this work together. We want to build a model that fits the requirement of our students and is designed in the context of higher education in Pakistan.”
The session featured discussions around quality assurance and sustainability models for the platform. “In Pakistan, we have millions of students who don’t have access to quality education. This collaboration will make quality courses available to students at every university in the country. This is an opportunity to think about the minimum quality standards that these courses should meet, and we shouldn’t compromise on them,” said Dr. Ahmad.
The proposed quality framework consists of six domains: Instructional Design, Content Quality, Learner Experience, Assessment and Evaluation, Publishing and Authoring, and Technology, Accessibility and Usability.
“This initiative is a huge opportunity for far-flung areas, but also for major cities. It is a win-win for everyone,” shared Dr. Tariq.
The need to consider the level and requirements of the learner while designing these courses was also discussed.
Vice Chancellors and senior leaders from Aga Khan University, Allama Iqbal Open University, BUITEMS, COMSATS, Hazara University, Lahore College Women University, University of Baltistan and Virtual University were also present at the meeting. The consortium will continue to convene regularly in the coming months to fine-tune the quality assurance model, discuss best practices and determine course offerings.