University Support and Workforce Development Program (USWDP) is designed to help Afghanistan’s higher education professionals effectively manage the growth of tertiary education while improving academic quality. Building on the successes of the Afghanistan Higher Education Project and other initiatives, the USWDP project will improve the management capacity of the Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE) and up to 10 public universities to ensure quality education and employment for a larger number of Afghan men and women. It will also assist in developing learning environments that foster well qualified and professional faculty members, highly capable and motivated students, diverse and market-oriented academic programs, sustainable public-private collaboration, international university partnerships, and other innovations that move Afghanistan toward the higher education system it deserves.
The Undergraduate Education Unit of USWDP seeks an STTA to support the MoHE Curriculum Commission coordinate and develop training programs to enhance faculty competencies in building the relevancy of workforce needs into classroom instruction. The overall objective of this effort is to strengthen academic curricula to meet the workforce expectations and demands for social and economic development in Afghanistan.
The Afghanistan higher education system has suffered through decades of civil strife undermining what was at one point a very outstanding higher education system. Since 2002, the MOHE and the development community have made efforts to revitalize higher education through upgrading of teaching staff through scholarships, short-term training in-country and study tours abroad. These efforts have raised the number of qualified teaching staff form what was about 80% with a Bachelor degree in 2002, to 48% based on a USWDP assessment of ten universities. Along with improving qualifications the MoHE was concerned about the university curricula as most have not been updated for more than a decade. Because of advances in the content, technology and teaching methods, MoHE called for a renewed effort to have all fields of study to be updated. In recent years there has been a movement to make curricula more relevant to the workforce needs and expectations as the country’s social and economic conditions are improving. There is a need to strengthen curricula so that graduates not only bring theory to the workforce market, but also the necessary skills needed to be productive contributors to the development of the country.
The consultant will support the curricula development effort by assisting the MoHE Curriculum Commission through:
- Coordinating and implementing the training program Developing Critical Thinking Skills in Higher Education.
- Design, coordinate and implement the Embedding Employable Skills into Classroom Instruction.
- Design, coordinate and implement the Making Classroom Instruction more Workforce Relevant.
Implementation approach required for the STTA
All activities implemented will be strategically aligned with the National Higher Education Strategic Plan II (NHESP) and USWDP development indicators. The STTA will be implemented in a consultative and collaborative manner involving MoHE Curriculum Commission and MoHE’s relevant representatives. The Commission will make final decisions concerning the content and logistics of the training programs. The STTA will work with the USWDP partner Afghan Holding Group (AHG) representatives to oversee the logistics of implementing the training programs. The STTA will develop appropriate programs that draw upon effective teaching and learning strategies. Supervision for the STTA is under the Senior Manager for Bachelor Degrees.