Panels Held on First Day of Vice Chancellors’ Forum

July 26, 2017 / Ankara


Four panels were held on the first day of the "Vice Chancellors' Forum" which will last for two days with the participation of the university rectors of the Islamic countries with the aim of forming a new higher education area among the Islamic countries and establishing collaborations accordingly.


The forum entitled "Forming the Higher Education Area of the Islamic World" started with a ceremony held in the Presidential Complex under the auspices of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.


After the opening ceremony, panels were held at Bilkent Hotel and Conference Center.


In addition to CoHE President Prof. Dr. M. A. Yekta Saraç, directors of public institutions, Turkish ambassadors to Islamic countries, CoHE members, 120 university rectors from more than 30 Islamic countries, university rectors of state and foundation universities in Turkey and CoHE officials attended the panels.


CoHE President Saraç made a speech at the opening of the panels.


CoHE President Saraç said that the forum, which was organized to develop cooperation between higher education systems and universities in the Islamic world, was an important opportunity to solve the problems of higher education in the Islamic world.


CoHE President stated that the meeting would be carried out as a forum rather than a conference, the standard statements would not be included and that it would be carried out through interactive discussions.


President Saraç said that they aim to form a new higher education area among the Islamic countries without drifting away from the Bologna Process. He added that they know that the universities in the Western countries have been carrying out joint degree programs with many universities in the Islamic world but that they do not do the same among themselves.


CoHE President Saraç noted that quality framework and quality assurance, credit transfer system and mobility, QA agencies and recognition and equivalency and joint/dual/double degree programs were the topics that would be discussed by the rectors of the Islamic world and said:


"With the common higher education system to be formed among the Islamic countries in this manner, the mobility of students and graduates will be possible. Thus, students will be able to spend certain periods of their education at a university in a different Islamic country without losing a period of study. This will lead to significant gains in many aspects, primarily academic and cultural gains.


Joint degree programs which are considered as a higher level of mobility are also among the topics that will be discussed in this forum. This topic is among the priorities of CoHE. Thanks to these programs, students can have two or even three diplomas within the same duration of study.


Initiatives to be launched in this manner will not be limited to student exchange and education process. The exchange of faculty members and researchers will also contribute to the process of increasing cooperation. This will contribute to the power of the Islamic world in science."


CoHE President added that the network which will be formed through strong ties will ensure a global higher education system and the independence of the life of science in the Islamic countries. He emphasized that Turkey has the most appropriate potential for this big initiative in the Islamic world.


At the end of the second day of the forum, Saraç said that they would summarize the topics they had discussed in the meeting with a final statement and concluded his speech by hoping to establish a common perspective among the countries.


Following the speech of President Saraç, the university rectors and representatives of the Islamic countries gave speeches.


The panel sessions entitled "Quality Framework and Quality Assurance", "Credit Transfer System and Mobility", "QA Agencies and Recognition and Equivalency" and "Joint/Dual/Double Degree Programs" were held after the speeches.


The first day of the forum was concluded with the dinner hosted by the Governorship of Ankara. It will continue with the evaluation of the panel sessions and future prospects the next day.