The growing youth population of the Arab region has brought about an increased demand for innovative, flexible, and independent learning avenues. In response to this trend, AGF has been working in the online learning space since 2016. AGF has focused efforts on mobilizing relevant stakeholders and advocating for the recognition of e-learning.
Specifically, AGF works with universities to build digital learning capacity and work towards the accreditation of online programs. These efforts aim to make higher education more accessible to the youth of the region, particularly for vulnerable groups including women and refugees.
2016: AGF’s Open Learning Scholars Program facilitates access to MicroMasters from MIT
AGF partnered with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to facilitate access of Arab youth to micro-credentials as part of the Open Learning Scholars Program (OLSP). As a pilot for the region in the online learning space, AGF provided opportunities for youth to enroll in two MIT MicroMasters Programs: (1) Supply Chain Management and (2) Data, Economics, and Development Policy (DEDP). The pilot aimed to enhance youth employability and professional development by supporting a total of 68 students from 13 countries through MITx.
2017: AGF’s Open Learning Scholars Program with Arizona State University (ASU)
AGF’s collaboration with Arizona State University (ASU) was a milestone for online learning advocacy and has enabled 550 young Arab students to pursue their Master’s degree online. ASU is a leading international institution with online learning expertise and experience and has been consistently ranked as the most innovative university in the United States for 5 consecutive years. Through the Open Learning Scholars Program (OLSP), young Arab professionals enrolled in 38 online master’s programs across a range of specializations including engineering, technology and health.
2017-2019: Blended learning in the Arab World with American University of Beirut (AUB) and American University in Cairo (AUC)
AGF has also collaborated with regional centers of academic excellence, the American University of Beirut (AUB) and American University in Cairo (AUC) as part of a two-year (2017-2019) regional capacity building project for online learning in collaboration with MIT. In keeping with the aim of promoting blended learning for capacity building in the Arab world, AGF trained faculty and instructional designers at AUC and AUB to redesign introductory undergraduate courses, and offer online and blended learning courses in Biology, Computer Science and Mathematics. The courses have benefited approximately 1200 students.
2020: The University Consortium for Quality Online Learning (UCQOL)
The University Consortium for Quality Online Learning (UCQOL) reflects AGF’s commitment to providing inclusive, innovative, and wide-reaching education opportunities for Emirati and Arab students. Through strategic partnerships with top universities and the UAE Ministry of Education, UCQOL will make online learning programs available to a larger pool of Arab students from the UAE and beyond. The Consortium, which is expected to scale up with more partner universities in the future, is already collaborating with nine of the country’s top universities: the American University of Dubai, American University of Sharjah, British University in Dubai, Khalifa University, New York University Abu Dhabi, UAE University, University of Dubai, University of Sharjah and Zayed University.
2021: Abdulla Al Ghurair Hub for Digital Teaching and Learning with the American University of Beirut (AUB)
The Abdulla Al Ghurair Hub for Digital Teaching and Learning was launched at AUB’s Maroun Semaan Faculty of Engineering and Architecture (MSFEA) in 2021 to improve access to quality online education for thousands of Arab youth across the region. The pioneering initiative will leverage cutting-edge learning technologies that respond to the rapidly evolving needs of regional and global employment markets. In addition to launching a combination of at least 15 online master’s programs, diplomas, and certificates in its first 3 years, the Abdulla Al Ghurair Hub for Digital Teaching and Learning will fill a gap in the regional higher education and online education market. Existing residential courses will be digitized to enable improvements in the teaching and learning experience for students. At the same time new courses and programs are being developed. For more information about the partnership, please go to https://www.aub.edu.lb/msfea/online/Pages/default.aspx
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