|Summary: Clear policies are in place at the university and unit levels for program planning and management. The dean, two associate deans, program coordinators, and faculty participate in a collaborative and well-defined leadership structure to offer well-considered programs to prepare educational professionals. Academic calendars, catalogs, and program requirements are correct, current, and online. Candidates are supported with an array of student services at the university, unit, and program levels. The unit is a leader in providing professional development throughout the university and K-12 schools.|
The College of Education, the unit seeking accreditation, is the only institution in Qatar for teacher and school leader preparation. All activities in the unit are aligned with university-wide policies, such as those in the policy manuals for program initiation, curriculum enhancement, and program review. The dean is head of the unit and has full responsibility for overseeing the academic, administrative, and financial matters within the unit and reports directly to the vice president (Faculty Handbook, 2.2.1, p. 22).
The College of Education has two associate deans, associate dean for academic affairs and associate dean for student affairs. A complete list of the duties and responsibilities of the dean may be found in the Faculty Handbook (22.214.171.124, p. 23).
The unit is composed of four departments. Each department has a department head with authority to manage faculty issues and programs. A list of the duties of the department heads may be found in the Faculty Handbook (126.96.36.199, p. 24).
The departments offer several programs. Each program has a coordinator who is responsible for program development, program management, and student issues. The exception to this is that the four diploma programs have a single coordinator to provide consistency and collaboration among the programs (see Diploma Coordinator Job Description). The duties of the other program coordinators correspond to the description in the Faculty Handbook (188.8.131.52, p. 25).
Collaboration among stakeholders in teacher education occurs at all levels of unit operations. Within the unit, the dean and the associate deans, department heads, and coordinators meet together monthly to discuss and approve academic and administrative issues. These meetings provide an opportunity for those involved in administration to work as a team to discuss and approve academic and administrative issues.
Collaboration is also strong within the university with other colleges that contribute to preparation of candidates. In planning the new B.Ed. in Primary Education (2009), a committee of faculty from the College of Arts and Sciences, including the dean, and faculty from the College of Education met frequently to design a program that was standards-based, rigorous, and consistent with the goals and objectives of the teacher preparation program. Quality assurance for the program includes ongoing meetings between instructors in the Arts and Sciences program and the coordinator of the B.Ed. program (B.Ed. Proposal). Faculty from the unit also work closely with the Office of Faculty and Instruction Development (OFID), providing the majority of the professional development for the university. The unit is also recognized as a leader in professional development in the K-12 environment through its Center for Development and Research and Early Childhood Center.
The Education Partners Committee meets once per semester to give recommendations and suggestions to review unit programs and provide suggestions to improve unit programs and services to the community. This committee includes members from several education institutes within Qatar and from the international community. K-12 partners are key members of this committee.
The unit’s recruiting and admission practices are described clearly and consistently in publications and catalogs, including the unit’s website, recruiting advertisements, and program brochures. The unit observes the University Academic Calendar and grading system (Student Handbook, p. 24). Courses are listed in the University Banner System’s online catalog. All documents must be approved in the department and by the dean before publication.
The Supreme Education Council (SEC) works closely with the unit to disseminate information about the programs and encourage recruitment. Emails announcing registration go to each Independent School, and brochures are available at professional development workshops and other SEC sponsored events. In preparation for the new Baccalaureate in Education (B.Ed.) degree, the coordinator visited numerous government and independent schools to present the program (Schedule and Agenda, School Visit Presentation). In addition to brochures, newspaper ads, and emails to the schools, the masters programs keep on ongoing listserv of all individuals who have expressed interest in the program and present several times per year a educational conferences in the area.
All qualified candidates for the B.Ed. and diploma programs are admitted. The masters programs limit cohorts to 20 candidates, determined by a committee of faculty and department heads.
Candidates in the masters programs are required to pay full university tuition. Candidates in the diploma program who intend to teach in Qatar’s independent schools may obtain a full tuition scholarship for the program, as a result of a partnership between the SEC and Qatar University. To retain the scholarship, the candidate must maintain a 2.5 GPA during the program. Candidates in the B.Ed. program are eligible for a full tuition scholarship and a stipend during the four years they are in the program providing they maintain a 2.5 GPA and take a full load each semester (Scholarship Agreement).
The unit supports its candidates throughout their programs through the office of the associate dean for student affairs. A visual overview of student support services provides a summary of this process. Other activities provided to support candidates through advising, counseling, support, and recognition include:
- Access to the university’s program of counseling and advising.
- Access to an office for personal counseling with faculty members from Educational Psychology.
- Availability for social interaction in unit-sponsored social clubs for both males and females.
- Monitoring of student needs by the Student Support Committee, composed of faculty members and chaired by the associate dean for student affairs, meeting monthly.
- Intervention for at-risk and probationary candidates.
- Recognition of outstanding achievements and scholarship.
- Research into candidate satisfaction with student services.