Distance Learning MА Education Start in Armenia
A working meeting was held at the Public Administration Academy of the Republic of Armenia (PAARA) on July 14. Representatives of the RA Ministry of Education and Science and the “Center for Educational Projects” PIU were present at the meeting.
The purpose of the visit was the monitoring of the ongoing grant projects implemented in the frames of the Competitive Innovation Fund (CIF) of the Armenian higher education. Tereza Khechoyan, the Vice- rector for International Relations of the PAARA the Project Manager for the CIF grant project informed the participants about the ongoing works of the “Distance Learning МА Education with Granting Joint Diploma” grant project implemented within the framework of the C I F. The implementation of the project started within the framework of the “Education Improvement” Projectin December 2015. The implementation of the project was aimed at the investment and development of the distance learning education in the RA, the provision of accessibility of MA education through the application of information communication technologies (ICT) and the creation of joint educational area.
The abovementioned purposes will be implemented due to the investment of the MA distance learning education by the “Business Management” specialty. At the end of this MA program the joint diploma will be granted by the Public Administration Academy of the RA and the Scientific-Educational International Center of the National Academy of Sciences of Armenia(SEIC NASA) being the grant project consortium participant. The Informatics and Automation Problems Institute of the National Academy of Sciences of Armenia (IAPI NASA) is another participant of the consortium. Within the framework of the project it is anticipated to launch distance learning platform, to conduct the training of the teaching staff of the higher education institutions, to develop distance learning courses, as well as to elaborate the format of the joint diploma. The creation of the distance learning MA program is being implemented according to 4 stages set by the grant agreement.
As a result of the monitoring visit at the end of the first stage of the project it was registered that the purchase of stationeries, office furniture and software has already been completed. The supply of a part of the hardware and household equipment purchased within the framework of the program has been completed as well. The higher education institutions has already started the development of the documents related to the distance learning education. The Memorandum of Understanding on distance learning education development between the RA Ministry of Education and Science and two higher education institutions - participants of the consortium, signed on June 23 became an important element anticipated in the frames of the project. It was aimed atthe strengthening the pre-conditions for the development of distance learning in the Republic of Armenia, as well as at the integration of the distance learning national education system in the Republic of Armenia. The Memorandum of Understanding was also aimed at the elaboration of the normative legal acts consonant with the distance learning. The normative legal documents elaborated within the framework of the project will be important both from the viewpoint of the higher education institutions , participants of the project t, and will become the most important stimulus for the development of the distance learning in the sphere of higher education in Armenia.
It should be noted that international double diploma programs have been implemented with the Mykolas Romeris University of Lithuania for the specialties “Electronic Public Management” and “Electronic Business Management” was established in the frames of previous CIF grant project implemented by the PAARA in 2013 as one of the 10 grant projects included in the CIF pilot stage under Education Quality and Relevance Second Project.
This project was aimed at the spreading of the application of information communication technologies in the private and state sectors of the Republic of Armenia. Besides that being a double diploma program, it has been considered as the most important step directed at the internalization of the RA higher education .