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Avicenna Virtual Campus

BUILDING THE UNIVERSITY OF THE FUTURE IN IRAQ  

The use of technology in education has become a standard component in many  countries. With the challenges hampering access of Iraqi students to universities, the  choice of developing e-learning emerged and an Avicenna Project for Iraq has been developed. Avicenna Virtual Campus for Science and Technology is an e-learning  knowledge network in the Mediterranean which has become a model for quality  online  student education and teacher training. Participating universities may share,  adapt and  translate teaching modules via the open virtual library. Although it is a  ‘campus’,  Avicenna  does not actually award degrees itself. That remains the  prerogative of the universities  concerned. In addition to producing courses,Avicenna helps to establish local  infrastructure and to transfer best practices and  professional  know-how within the  participating universities.The establishment of Avicenna Virtual Campus in Iraq (AVCI) project has seen substantial  progress to date. 
Firstly, an agreement was reached to extend the network of e-learning centers from three, to nine universities (Bagdad, Basra, Salahaddin, Kufa, Mousel, Al-Anbar, Wassit, Muthanna and Sulaymaniyah).
 A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed with an established Avicenna hub, Philadelphia University in Jordan, to support this process, and a hosting server for the Iraq Avicenna center was installed at the university. 

Four e-learning centers have been developed, and their equipment process is underway (Bagdad, Basra, Salahaddin, and Kufa).  To support the instructional side of distance learning, 87 Iraqi professors were trained as trainers on on-line course development through a total of five technical workshops.  In addition to increasing the capacity of the trained professors, this process also supported the development of a total

 of 34 online modules which have been produced in three of the e-learning centers (Bagdad, Basra and Salahaddin), and a scientific board for the evaluation of developed courses was formed based on the Avicenna Network recognized experts.  As an additional means to coordinate and share information and resources between teaching staff and students, an Iraqi Avicenna Virtual Campus Portal and Virtual Library has been launched in 2011.  As a final achievement in this area, an additional 151 teachers/tutors were trained inside Iraq, through a multiplier effect training programme, and a total of 29 seminars were organized in the newly-developed AVCI inside Iraq (Baghdad, Salahaddin and Basra).

Specific achievements of this project included the following:

  1. Development and Launch of an Avicenna Portal and Virtual Library.
  2. Production of 45 online courseware in the 3 centres established in Baghdad, Basra and Salahaddin universities.
  3. Training of 105 professors and MOHE representatives.
  4. Training of 180 university teaching staff/tutors trained inside Iraq in a multiplier-effect training program.
  5. Organisation of 40 seminars/workshops for the newly established AVCI.
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