The Colombo Plan Staff College (CPSC) welcomed 18 academic officers from the North Sumatera State Institute of Islamic Studies (or IAIN-Institut Agama Islam Negeri) on a five-day capacity building on Professional Development and Curriculum Development in Higher Education from September 15-19, 2014. This collaboration between CPSC and IAIN-North Sumatera was the second of this kind for this academic year (see related news

Envisioning to be the center of multidisciplinary development of Islamic studies in Indonesia, IAIN North Sumatera is mandated to provide international competitive Islamic education in the fields of science, technology and arts. It is also committed to develop Islamic studies research relevant to the needs of the community and promote Muslim community empowerment.

Currently, IAIN aspires to transform itself into a university, in which the upgrading of systems and services is of utmost importance and priority to them. Thus, CPSC has been selected by IAIN to assist in the capacity building aspect of such goal, and equip the institute’s heads of study programs with the necessary knowledge and competencies that will enable them to achieve that goal.

The program aims to encourage the interest of the participants regarding the regional and country-based curriculum development trends and their implications for sustainable human resources development with reference to the ASEAN countries context. The training program is also designed to enable the participants to identify practices and systems for educational excellence through curriculum development and have an understanding of need for professional development concepts, practices and directions for the future. At the end of the program, the participants are expected to prepare an Action Plan that will guide the institute towards becoming a full-fledged university.

The delegation is led by Prof. Dr. Amroeni Drajat, MA Taskforce for Academic Affairs of IAIN North Sumatera. The delegation is composed of heads of the different study programs currently being offered by the institution.

Overall supervision of the program is being provided by the CPSC Director General, Dr. Mohammad Naim Yaakub. Dr. Hazrat Hussain, CPSC Faculty Consultant, is in-charge with the program coordination while Dr. Zulkifli Zakaria, CPSC Short-Term Faculty Consultant, is also providing his expertise as a Resource Person.

The opening program commenced with the exchange of well-wishes and appreciations. Dr. Naim, addressing the participants in Bahasa Indonesia and English, commended the efforts of IAIN in developing their human resources through intensive trainings on management. He also cited the importance of the upcoming ASEAN integration and its impact in the development of economies in the region. He also mentioned CPSC’s success in inculcating the lessons from the training programs to its participants, citing a case of one trainee participant from Indonesia applying the management techniques that she learned in CPSC to efficiently manage her division.

Dr. Drajat, representing IAIN North Sumatera, conveyed his appreciations to CPSC in its efforts for the program on behalf of the delegation. He also expressed the relevance of the program in fulfilling their aim in making the institute a center of development of multidisciplinary Muslim Studies in Indonesia.

Some of the participants during one of the lectures The five-day program tackles topics that talks about professional and curriculum development. This includes the following: (1) Analysis of Needs for Curriculum Development and Training, (2) Current Practices in Curriculum Development in Higher Education, (3) Pedagogic and Instructional Practices in Current Educational System and (4) Training and Development for Continuous Professional Development. A special lecture about the new paradigms of education in the modern era was also delivered by Dr. Naim in Bahasa Indonesia and English.

To further refine their skills in curriculum enhancement and development, tasks such as the Training Needs Analysis, Curriculum Analysis and Formulating Institutional Objectives are being given as exercises. At the end of the seminar, participants are expected to come up with an action plan that will guide the institute towards becoming a full-fledged university.

The program also included visits to relevant universities in the city such as the Asian Institute of Management in Makati and the University of Asia and the Pacific in Ortigas. A half-day tour around the city of Manila is also included in the program to spark the interest of the participants on the history and culture of the city.

The IAIN delegation at the Asian Institute of Management (AIM), Makati.