I want to pursue my Education. I go on the net and put a search for the subject I want to specialize in, what do I get? Three million pages of websites that I need to surf in to make my choices.
It does not stop here, as within each website there is like 3000 pages of calendar that I have to search through to achieve my objective. Is this what I want? Maybe this is better? Oh that sounds more interesting! And being intrinsically inquisitive we tend to become so googlised to the extent that we forget at times why we went to the net and what on earth we are searching for. The battle of choices grows bigger when we think of where to go and how much to spend etc.

And then I start to think, why can’t there be a university that is so international that a student can go to and find his or her ultimate objective. I can be studying a course from Harvard, another from Oxford, a third from INSEAD, the fourth from Auckland and so on; I will have my credits weighed on an internationally recognized standard and the lectures can be seen and heard on video conference, chat room, emails and the thousands of other electronic and telecommunication devices available these days. Almost all universities use blackboard, Moodle and Web CT these days and the choice of on-line degrees is growing by the minute.

But will this be acceptable? I don’t think so; hold on a second, why did we approve of globalization in every aspect of life, but not in education?

I would think that globalizing education is the easiest of all especially trade. Think about it this way:

All educational products are in a form that is easily transmitted electronically (words) The theories and practices that all the institutions teach are globally recognized. The lecturers are available internationally – and the experts in each field are easily found. The textbooks can be bought over the net.

The list goes on – and the advantages in globalizing education are yet to be determined. Wouldn’t this make our life that much easier?

Think of the savings that can be achieved?? Think of the time that people can save in the process of achieving their aims. Also people like us will have easier time finding out if a student’s credits are transferable or not; all the streams of accreditation bodies will have a much easier time as all the subjects are standardized.

However is this achievable? No, and definitely not. The reasons are obvious. First, we are all proud of where we studied and would like our kids to go to the same place, we donate money to our university, and we back the research that is done by our university’s researchers and professors. Secondly, the university itself values itself more than any other. And thirdly, education is a business like every other product, and every business wants to survive and most importantly be better than the others. No wonder all those ranking bodies are flourishing, and the stream of accreditation bodies are increasing, as most of the world’s universities are not generating appropriate graduates for what the industry needs

To all the educators out there, let’s have this objective in mind to save the future generation from being lost.

Contact me if while you are reading this blog, you get a hint of an idea on how to achieve the above goal.

Suad Alhalwachi
Director, Education Zone