The Higher Education Support Program aims at ensuring transparency and accountability of the education reform through revision and critique of current policies and building critical support of the faculty and public for upgrade of quality and elimination of corruption.
Up until 2012, the program was involved in direct support to universities through education policy development, upgrade of content quality and professional growth of faculty. The Foundation was the pioneer in funding projects of credit system integration in State Engineering University, in development and integration of purpose-based courses at various universities, in improvement of quality mechanisms though development and adaptation of guidelines and exposing to professional expertise, in providing open access to online courses. At present the program continues to work with the Information Technologies Center at Yerevan State University over a project to develop online courses in consortia with Russian Armenian and State Engineering Universities. Four online courses used as shared platforms and a toolkit for development of similar courses for faculty will be developed by mid 2014.
Starting from 2012, the program has shifted its priorities from support to universities onto building effective educational governance, combating lack of accountability mechanisms, corruption and conflict of interest, protecting scholars and promoting academic freedom. In early 2013, the Foundation commissioned the Center for Policy Research at Central European University, Budapest, Hungary, to conduct an assessment of the higher education area in the country and provide an outsider perspective and recommendations for reform implementation and the current state of higher education in Armenia. This came as an outcry against the situation with tightly controlled education system, inefficiency and unworkability of education quality and its mechanisms, public perception of education among most corrupt areas ( see 2013 Transparency International Global Corruption Barometer http://www.transparency.org/whatwedo/pub/global_corruption_barometer_2013). The report supports the idea that executive control over higher education is massive and academic freedom is at risk despite well-presented national reports.
The public report will be available shortly.
In its strategic years of 2014-17, the program will work to secure autonomy and accountability of the system and improve education standards through instituting academic freedom and integrity.
Publications available for download:
Higher Education Support Program:
Higher Education in Armenia Today: a Focused Review (Arm | Eng)
Status Report on the 10 Action Lines of Bologna (Arm | Eng)
Guidelines for Reform Strategy
Recommendations for Bologna Process Strategy Development
Strategy on QA System (Final)
Bologna Process in Armenia – Guide (Arm)
Quality Assurance University Systems: A Handbook
Design and Implementation of Competency-based Study Programs: A handbook