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DOHA: Qatar University (QU) yesterday unveiled the new structure of its Foundation Programme that does not require minimum scores in IELTS or TOEFL proficiency tests.
A passing score of 70 percent in the Foundation Programme will allow students to enroll in their respective college or programme.
The new structure follows the recent decision by the Supreme Education Council (SEC) making Arabic language as the medium of instruction at the University. The decision also abolished the Foundation Programme in all programmes that are being taught in Arabic.
QU Vice President and Chief Academic Officer Dr Sheikha bint Jabor Al Thani outlined details of the new structure which reduces the Foundation Programme to one year instead of two, starting Fall 2012. Al Thani explained that the new Program is structured on Levels 1-4, and will be divided into four 9-week sessions, with an additional 6-week summer session if needed.
Its focus will be on improving students’ language and mathematics skills. A dynamic intensive English component that is attuned to individual student needs forms part of the new structure, while the computer component will be eliminated as ICT skills will be integrated into all student learning experiences at QU, she added.
The Program will be student-centered and project-based, with a focus on creativity, engaging students in tasks and activities that not only spark their motivation, but are related to their prospective field of specialization and to the Core Curriculum Program (CCP).
The CCP is aimed at the acquisition of skills and competencies in general knowledge, communication, research, critical thinking, ethics and civic responsibility, and appreciation of identity and cultural diversity.
The teaching philosophy of the new Program advocates interactive, communicative, and collaborative strategies of teaching and learning, Dr Al-Thani said. To achieve this, class size will be reduced to 16 students per class for Levels 1 and 2, and 20 per class for Levels 3 and 4, and allowed class absence will be reduced from 25 per cent to 10 per cent.
She further stated that students’ duration of study can be shortened, as the new structure has a flexible built-in mechanism that caters to individual learning needs and facilitates movement from one level to the next based on individual progress. Current students will be transitioned into the new structure based on the level they would be moving on to at the start of Fall 2012..