Doha: Qatar University (QU) has launched three open and broad-based online courses on the edX Free Online Courses platform in a new initiative that enhances the presence of QU on the digital platforms and opens a new window to the world.
The online courses, which were announced on Sunday through a press conference, comprise Non-native Arabic speakers, Human in Islam, and Qatar's history and legacy, with the objective of introducing Arab and Islamic culture, including Qatar's history, to a wide spectrum of those who are interested from different territories worldwide.
QU President Dr. Hassan Rashid Al-Derham said that the launch of these online courses is a new indicator of the paradigm of progress QU is achieving and making progressive and steady steps toward enhancing its status in the digital space, especially with the variations imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
He stated that QU has established an office of online education and digital learning and has upgraded a number of academic courses delivered via distance education and blended learning using the best global criteria.
“QU has created an office of digital and electronic education in recognition of its vital significance and profound impact in this age that witnesses enormous technological evolution that can be optimally employed for the transfer of educational practice from conventional techniques to education that is based on comprehension, research, innovation, thinking, and experimentation,” he said.
Dr. Al-Derham affirmed that such digital orientation opens new prospects for students and teachers, as well as upgrades the techniques and tools utilized to make innovation, competition, and excellence in results, planning, information security, and the ability to innovate the suitable solutions for the challenges the inherent tenets of QU's graduates.
In addition, the Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Omar Al-Ansari, emphasised that such courses have been designed with the objective of extending the bridges of cultural and civilised communication between Qatar and the world, in addition to introducing the Qatari identity.
Dr Al Ansari hailed the unwavering efforts exerted by the faculty members and the staff of the Digital Learning and E-Learning Office at QU to finalize this project.
Dr Rana Sobh, Director of (QU) Core Curriculum Program, who oversaw the program, stated that the creation of these courses was based on QU's education and learning strategy, as well as the transition to digital learning.
Mohammad Al-Smadi, Director of Digital Learning and Online Education Office at QU, stated that QU signed a cooperation agreement with edX Free Online Courses by Harvard last June to contribute to achieving QU's mission of spreading knowledge and science on a global scale. He added that the cooperation with edX increases the number of students enrolling in the university, which increases the number of followers and pioneers and contributes to achieving the university's mission.
He pointed out the role of this contribution in enriching the Arab educational content on the internet through offering the opportunity to launch courses in the Arabic language, emphasizing QU's keenness to proceed with its endeavors to combine digital learning and electronic education into college education, in addition to offering the diverse electronic learning and education services for students, as well as local and global communities.
The edX platform is one of the largest platforms for distance education worldwide, and it was founded in a cooperation between Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2012, and the number of registered students is currently about 42 million learners from around the world.
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