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2011

BREAKING NEW GROUND Oman’s education sector is pushing the envelope with courses aligned with industrial needs


EDITORIAL 2011

BREAKING NEW GROUND Oman’s education sector is pushing the envelope with courses aligned with industrial needs

Gearing for change

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uilding a talented pool of qualified youth to match the requirements of the job market has always been a challenge all over the world and cuts across demographical and social barriers. Oman is hardly an exception to this norm. The silver lining comes from the knowledge that the Ministry of Higher Education has been proactively pushing the barriers to enable knowledge seekers get the right stripes and at the right time.

Concept and content by Visvas Paul D Karra Sushmita Sarkhel Muhammed Nafie Ghalib Abdullah Al Fori Business Head Jacob George Sales & Marketing Avi Titus Arif Abdul Bari Sanjeev Rana Senior Art Director Sandesh S. Rangnekar Design M. Balagopalan Khoula Rashid Al Wahaibi Translator Mostafa Kamel Production Manager Govindraj Ramesh Photography Rajesh Burman Motasim Abdulla Al Balushi CORPORATE Chief Executive Sandeep Sehgal Executive Vice President Alpana Roy Vice President Ravi Raman Senior Business Support Executive Radha Kumar Business Support Executive Sarah Salim Al Saadi Published by United Press & Publishing LLC PO Box 3305, Ruwi, Postal Code - 112 Muscat, Sultanate of Oman Tel (968) 24700896 Fax (968) 24707939 Email: editor@oeronline.com Website: www.umsoman.com All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. The publisher does not accept responsibility for any loss occasioned to any person or organisation acting or refraining as a result of material in this publication. OER accepts no responsibility for all advertising contents.

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Scholarships announced by the government have also aided students who have the thirst for knowledge but could not afford to pay for their education. Recently, HE Abdullah bin Mohammed Al Sarmi, Undersecretary, Ministry of Higher Education, said that the ministry would soon be announcing the qualifying norms for awarding of 1,000 higher education scholarships. Al Sarmi said that the scholarships would be distributed over the next five years, with 200 scholarships being awarded every year. Steps such as these have resulted in the employability of thousands of students in the job market. More than 74,000 new job opportunities have been created in different sectors till the end of July. The number of citizens who have been employed was over 55,000, including 23,000 in the public sector and 32,000 in the private sector. The jobs provided by the private sector included 6,500 jobs for females. The most notable thing is that the job opportunities provided by the private sector were distributed among different educational levels. Nearly 15,000 of those employed were university degree and diploma holders while over 12,000 were for those who had undergone vocational training. This comes from training programmes provided either through vocational training centres or training centres at the Ministry of Manpower. Greater cooperation between the various educational institutes and the government bodies like the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Higher Education as well as the Ministry of Manpower will definitely bring benefits to the youth of the country. The fourth edition of Education Review gives an insight into the various educational institutes which are not only in Oman but also all over the world giving Omani students a world of opportunities. Happy reading. Visvas Paul D Karra

Presentation

Copyright Š 2011 United Press & Publishing LLC Printed by Oriental Printing Press

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CONTENTS

OVERVIEW

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Study UK Kate Clarke, Managing Director and Education Advisor, Al Ahlam Higher Education and Training

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Establishing a sound foundation The ministry of higher education is in the vanguard of creating job related skills

10 Get the edge

Lawrence Alva, CEO, NTI tells how to put your career on the fast track

14 For a paradigm shift

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Capacity Building Dr Ahmed Hassan Al Balushi, Acting Dean, Caledonian College of Engineering

Time to assert change with a greater willingness, says B N Sarkar, Principal, ISS

16 Investing in education

Indian education market is slowly becoming the top ten educational destinations

22 Honour Roll

Your guide to the best educational institutions across India

26 College Confessions

Student life is all about pulling pranks and random funny moments

Sponsored Features 27 University of Wollongong in Dubai

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Destination Abroad Kala Rao, Business Unit Manager, IDP Education

28 Sultan Qaboos University 30 Murdoch University 32 Kaplan International Colleges 34 University of Southern Queensland 36 Navitas: International studies

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OVERVIEW

ESTABLISHING

A SOUND FOUNDATION

HE Dr Rawiyah Bint Saud Al Busaidiyah Minister of Higher Education

The Ministry of Higher Education is pursuing a variety of programmes ranging from infrastructure development to scholarships and from academic chairs to creating job related skills

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he Ministry of Higher Education has taken steady and advanced steps for establishing an infrastructure for the higher education system in the Sultanate built on reputable and prestigious universities and organisations. These institutions and organisations would open broader horizons and provide more work opportunities for Omani students and scholars to meet the requirements of the Omani labour market. The royal directives of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said gave the green light to competent officials and stakeholders to act and proceed with this development.

HIGHER EDUCATION ADMISSIONS CENTRE (HEAC) It is one of the most important achievements of the Ministry of Higher

Education. The Admission Centre uses IT for servicing the community and to facilitate procedures. To secure easy and quick transactions, the centre manages electronic admissions, the Higher Education Statistical System and Graduates Survey Project.

ELECTRONIC ADMISSION SYSTEM This enables all graduates, who have acquired the general education diploma or its equivalent, to file one electronic application to join higher education institutions and then enables individuals to register and complete their admission procedures online or via SMS. The system provides 24 services, secures fair and transparent handling of all applications and gives priority to the highest school qualifications. Moreover, the system maintains statistics for all

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students enrolled inside or outside the Sultanate along with providing proposals and recommendations on admission, available seats and students’ population in these available seats. Annually, 50,000 students use this system, apart from the 61 academic, higher education and government entities and 2,072 schools as per the data of the Ministry of Education for the academic year 2010-2011.

HIGHER EDUCATION STATISTICAL SYSTEM (HESS) This is an electronic system designed to collect and disseminate detailed data about students, academics and administrators in all higher education institutions in the Sultanate regarding Omani students who (will) study


abroad, financial data on each Higher Education Institution, as well as data on graduated students. The HEAC also verifies, documents, and provides data to Higher Education institutions, government entities, research and study centres as well as other concerned entities. The HESS provides information on higher education in the Sultanate of Oman in order to assist decision makers in the country and other agencies in developing their strategies and plans that seek to further develop higher education in the Sultanate.

THE GRADUATES SURVEY PROJECT The Graduates Survey Project is an instrument that allows the Ministry to collect data on graduates’ whereabouts and their competency to enter the job market. The survey is expected to

provide valuable data and indicators on the link between higher education and the job market, which in turn provides higher education institutions with feedback on the skills, competencies and specialisations of graduates that are required by the job market. It also allows these institutions, if required, to enrich and enhance their programme offerings. Furthermore, the results provide graduates and professional advisory institutions, students, their parents and families, as well as the society at large, with valuable information on the required programmes for the job market.

PRIVATE HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS (HEIS) Private Higher Education has become a key resource for investment as it significantly contributes in qualifying

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cadres and empowering them with the requisite skills to meet the job market requirements in the Sultanate. It’s role became persistent to increase available sources for higher education and meet the increasing demands on higher education inside or outside the Sultanate. The opportunity to proceed on one’s studies and receive higher education programmes are no longer limited to graduates of public education diploma but also includes private and public sectors’ employees and staff.

COLLEGES OF APPLIED SCIENCES The Students’ Service Centre of the General Directorate of Colleges of Applied Sciences supports education at the colleges of applied sciences, using a package of activities and events related to its majors and programmes. These activities and events would


OVERVIEW

build positive approach towards the student’s personality, environment and community and enables student to join the labour market.

SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH CENTRE Scientific research has been supported to develop the community, encourage higher education institutions to conduct research and studies at the colleges of applied sciences, support, develop and benefit from scientific research to develop programmes for the Colleges of Applied Sciences, in this regard, a Scientific Research Centre was established at the General Directorate of Colleges of Applied Sciences in 2010. This centre follows-up on the development of strategic plans, annual plans for research projects and issuance of bi-annual Omani magazines for Colleges of Applied Sciences.

CAREER COUNSELLING Students’ Service Centre in coordination with the Career Counselling Centre at colleges helps students to choose and plan their careers by giving them a future vision of the after college period and communicating to them the means and tools to prepare and apply for a job and get appointed. The centre provides distinguished and diversified services to the students and graduates of Applied Science Colleges and business sectors. At the time of preparations for the first graduation class of Sohar Applied Sciences College, the centre organised an exhibition at Sohar Applied Sciences College in 2010, which hosted 36 private and public sector entities.

ACADEMIC ELECTRONIC SYSTEMS CENTRE The centre plays a major role as it integrates and completes the IT infrastructure of the Applied Sciences Colleges. The centre develops and executes strategic plans relating to education, supervises and manages the e-education platform, manages LAN

and WAN networks of the Applied Sciences Colleges and develops and executes IT strategic plans and identifies the requirements for academic programmes of labs, devices, software and all other related IT items.

SCHOLARSHIPS Internal scholarships: The Ministry strives to serve all segments of society especially social security and low income families. The Ministry aims at promoting these families and qualifying them with knowledge in different fields, and so makes them productive and effective parties in society and major players in the comprehensive development of different sectors in the Sultanate. To serve this end, the Ministry provides internal scholarships in different educational entities, which reached 25 entities in the academic year 2009-2010. The Ministry allocates fully paid scholarships inclusive of school fees and charges in addition to the monthly allowance to the social security families at the diploma level. Moreover, the Ministry pays 75 per cent of the total school fees for lowincome families; Internal Scholarships Department supervises, monitors and supports them academically and financially as it would mitigate the challenges and difficulties which they face during their study. The Ministry continues to support distinguished students of the sons of social security students who got the highest degrees during the diploma stage. External scholarships External scholarships are very important to develop human resources in rare and required specialisations. The External Scholarship department plays an effective role in sending graduates of public education diploma or its equivalent to study abroad. The department provides help to the students on full/partial external scholarships via brochures, pamphlets, and annual lectures to students

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interested in studying abroad in order to familiarise them with the applicable laws and regulations, academic systems, language, climate, currency and admission procedures and requirements. This enables students to overcome any difficulties that they face. The department also follows-up on these students and encourages them to be better representatives of their countries. The department urges them to adopt the concept of “excellence” in all their dealings and in their study, and adhere to good ethics. The department also handles the identification and qualification documents of the nominees through attachments of our embassies abroad, which register envoys, follow-up on their academic achievements and progress, and report such progress to competent entities. The department strives to accommodate the annual growing increase of diploma graduates; additional fully covered scholarships reached 30, in addition to 15 in veterinary medicine and 22 scholarships, granted by some administrative entities in the state.

HIGHER EDUCATION SERVICES OFFICE In compliance with the Ministry’s policy in regard to involving the private sector in the activities of Higher Education, private sector educational entities have been authorised to open offices to practice and provide higher education services subject to the conditions and standards set forth in the regulations of the organisation of the Higher Education service offices as promulgated by the Ministerial decree No. 28 of 2005 dated on March 28, 2005. To encourage these offices to advance their service quality, they have been categorised into first and second classes in accordance with technical, administrative and academic standards. The number of authorised offices is 24, classified into 11 offices within the first class and 13 within the second class of offices.


POST GRADUATE STUDIES The department handles the completion of procedures, required for postgraduate studies, i.e. Master’s and Doctorate, for the stakeholders interested in proceeding on their studies, whether they are private or public sector employees or individuals from different authorities of the state. The department makes lists of the holders of doctorates and approves them by competent entities, opens new channels for postgraduate studies in other countries, communicates with the students who conduct their postgraduate studies on their expenses to get their documents for authentication and registration at the Ministry, answers their inquiries,

directs them to approved and proper universities, and provides them with the required help. The department created integrated database for postgraduate students inside and outside the Sultanate. The department organises forums on sister and friendly universities for orientation purposes. Moreover, the department considers challenges and difficulties facing students inside and outside the Sultanate to propose proper solutions.

SULTAN QABOOS SCIENTIFIC CHAIRS Given the research, educational, historic and academic relations between Oman and other countries and in accordance with the Sultan’s directives and care of

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His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said, the Ministry of Higher Education supervises five of the 14 academic chairs, which are honoured to carry the name of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said at world universities. The Sultanate is keen to establish more chairs; and work is in progress for new chairs in Asian and European countries. In order to followup and report on affairs and activities related to the Academic Chairs, a Committee of all authorities supervising the Chairs was formed, chaired by the Ministry oHigher Education and the membership of supervising entities. In addition, the Committee is mandated to consider the establishment of new Academic Chairs and make recommendations in this regard.


INTERVIEW

Kate Clarke, Managing Director and Education Advisor, Al Ahlam Higher Education & Training, gives prospective students insights on what it’s like studying in the United Kingdom

STUDY UK What does holding a UK qualification mean for a student from Oman? I think that most of our students feel that anyone who holds any overseas qualification, not just from the UK, has the edge over job applicants holding local degrees. Having said that, the UK has a reputation for high quality education and once more, students feel that it would give them the edge in a situation where students with overseas qualifications were on the final shortlist for a job. I am sure that 95 per cent of our students are studying not for the love of their subject, but because it is the next step on the path to a good career! How are the courses taught, mostly? Degree programmes are taught on a full time basis but in fact this often means only one or two lectures per day (especially at Masters level). Students fall into the trap of thinking that if there is no lecture they don’t have any work but in fact, much of the learning requires long hours of research and selfstudy. This is not something that can be crammed in at the end of the academic year, just prior to the exams, so I tell students to treat their study as if it was a job – go to the university around 9am each day and don’t leave until 5pm. Do all your internet research and reading, make notes and start early to collect material so that assignments can be completed without delay.

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What kind of support is available for international students? These days, every university has an international office and even before reaching the UK many students already know their Middle East representative and some have even met them on visits to Oman. Of course, the Accommodation Office is the first port of call. Having safe and comfortable accommodation is essential and the staff are on hand to help with any difficulties. Every university has counsellors available to help students who are homesick, finding it difficult to settle in and make friends, or who are facing difficulties in their studies. Finally, an increasing number of universities have an Omani Society, made up of Omani students, and they provide valuable help especially in Fresher’s Week in helping new arrivals. It’s also nice on special occasions like National Day to get together with your countrymen and celebrate. What are the general entry requirements? One of the most important entry requirements, which foreign students shouldn’t neglect, is English language proficiency. Omani students have to consider that they are going to study subjects through the medium of English and they need to have comparable language skills to those of the British students. This is why it is essential to take an IELTS test early on and take steps to improve their language skills to the required level (4.5 – 5.0 for entry to Foundation courses, 6.0 for entry to a Bachelor’s course and 6.5 for entry to a Masters course). As for academic requirements, the general rule is that the higher ranked the university, the higher the entry grades. Would you kindly tell us a little about UCAS? All applications to Bachelor’s courses must be made through UCAS – The Universities Central Admissions System.

Al Ahlam services to students We provide a full range of services, from the moment a student first begins to think about overseas study, until the day he comes back to Oman with his hard earned degree. We provide information on the various courses and universities, advise on university rankings and suitability for the student according to his academic background. We do a course search and help the student to select the most suitable institution and location. We check all supporting documents and submit the applications, following up to receive offer letters. We assist the student, if required, to make his final choice and to accept the offer. We help him with a deposit payment or sending his sponsorship letter to the institution. We receive his CAS and check it carefully, later we will complete his visa application form and check all the supporting documents to ensure that his visa application will be successful. We book hostel accommodation or guide the student to information on private rented accommodation. Even when the student is in the UK we keep in touch to get feedback on their experience and to see how they are getting on. We meet a large proportion of our students on their return to Oman after their studies and keep in touch with them for years afterwards, exchanging Eid greetings, etc. Study abroad is a life-changing experience and we are privileged to help Omanis to achieve their dreams. The closing date for applications is June 30 of the year of entry. Applications can be made after this date but they will be processed through “Clearing” which is when unclaimed courses are once again offered. This takes place at the end of August and not all courses will be available through Clearing, so it is advisable to get applications submitted before the June deadline. The visa application procedure and the rules governing them has undergone some restructuring and most students find the whole

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procedure quite daunting. What would your advice be? Yes, the UK visa system has had a complete overhaul in the last two years and the procedure for making an application is certainly one that requires a lot of thought and preparation. All information is found on the Border Agency website (www.ukba.homeoffice. gov.uk/studyingintheuk) and the Visa Application Centre at Ghubra. I would recommend that students complete the paperwork for admission to university as soon as possible and submit their visa application in good time to avoid delays and unnecessary anxiety. The visa takes up to two weeks to process and in the busy season (the months of June and August), it can take longer. In general, what would your advice be to prospective students? I would encourage students to start their planning for overseas study early on. Keep all documents in a safe place and collect references from teachers or from places of work to support future applications. Be prepared to do a lot of research into the different universities and courses that are available. Think carefully about your career plans and choose a programme of study that will enable you to achieve those goals. Be realistic about what you can do, if you are a C and D grade student, there is no point in aspiring to a high ranked, academic institution – failure is terribly demotivating. Your self-esteem will nosedive if you find yourself, academically, out of your depth. They say that your student days are the happiest days of your life – make sure you can cope with your studies and you will enjoy your programme and get maximum benefit. Above all, be focused. Do not get distracted by other people who have yet to work out what they want to do with their lives. Remember that you will be returning to Oman to carry on the great work of building up this country and helping it to hold its own on the world stage.


INTERVIEW

Get the Edge

Get your career on the fast track. Lawrence Alva, CEO, National Training Institute, says how

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perating in Oman for the last 25 years, the National Training Institute has seen the changing needs of the local market and has diversified into different areas to meet the same. Today NTI provides training in six different areas namely – IT, Business Skills (Soft Skills),Health Safety Environment (HSE), Industrial Technical training, Financial Studies and Executive Development Programs. Their learning solutions are designed and delivered to ensure that training creates measurable business value for clients and are customised according to their specific learning environment and business needs. Their clientele ranges from Corporate firms from the Oil & Gas, Telecomm, Banking and Financial Institutions, Automobile industry etc together with the government sector Who are the courses meant for? Majority of the participants undergoing training at the five different divisions of NTI are the employees of the Government and Private sector. The entire programme portfolio offered at NTI focuses on building Knowledge, Skills and Attitude of the participants attending the course, this makes NTI the chosen training provider for the corporate and the Government sector. How do the certifications help secure better jobs? Today’s employers need people who are professionally qualified so that they can be productive from day one. The skill-building approach of the courses offered by NTI helps participants

gain practical knowledge and local market requirements combined with international standards in the delivery of the programme, enhances the knowledge and skills of participants that complement their technical/ academic qualifications and make them ready for entering the professional sector. Kindly tell us a little about your IT courses and design courses. The IT division of NTI is represented by New Horizons Computer Learning Center, a US based company with around 385 centres worldwide. NTI is an authorised training and testing centre for Microsoft, Oracle, CompTIA, EC-Council, ICDl, ICCKE as well as higher end certifications like PMP, ITIL, VMware and Bluecoat. New Horizons helps companies increase the productivity of their employees by helping them get the most out of their technology. Mentored Learning is the solution developed by New Horizons to cater to their clients’ requirements. It is a new training alternative to our valued customers, to reinforce their trust in us, to let them know that we keep innovating and committing ourselves to understand their needs and provide appropriate solutions. It is not a product that we sell, instead it is a service that we provide to those who partner with us to provide solutions. Through this, we aim at providing targeted, time-bound solutions to the consumer segment, maximum training ROI to the corporate and a hard nosed competition to our competitors.

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What’s new for NTI this year? Keeping abreast with the increasing demand in the industry for higher professional qualifications and certifications, all divisions of NTI have geared up to offer the latest qualifications and certifications required by the industry. The IT division of NTI, New Horizons Computer Learning Center has become the only authorised centre in Oman to offer the high-end professional certifications like VMware and Bluecoat. The upgradations in technologies related to Microsoft, Oracle, CompTIA are anyway a part of their on-going development programme. In view of the recent developments, the Business Skills division of NTI, BizPro has designed a programme on Employment Readiness that has helped many corporates recruit and train their new recruits in the most efficient and effective manner. In addition to providing CAT and ACCA qualifications, the Financial Studies division of NTI is now an authorised centre for providing CIMA qualifications. The HSE division of NTI has also started providing IOSH in Arabic. The Executive Development Programmes are offered by the Gulf School of Business, a division of NTI that has a wide range of programs to be offered to the corporate sector.


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INTERVIEW

Dr Ahmed Hassan Al Balushi, Acting Dean, Caledonian Engineering College speaks about the collegeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s aims and goals What attracts students to Caledonian Engineering College? I think what attracts students is our reputation. In Oman, reputation is very important and the word of mouth is very strong. People trust nothing more than a reference. So we definitely get a lot of recommendations from our past students. We have parents from Buraimi, Sharqiyah, and Batinah. They have options to study near their houses but they want to come here. This indicates that what we are doing is right and this indicator gives me confidence and comfort that we are going in the right direction. Mainly, I would say, students are attracted by the quality of education we offer and the variety of programmes as well as the facilities we provide. And moreover, we keep on adding value. There are other colleges who will be providing similar type of programmes but we want to provide that competitive advantage as we understand how the core values work. So I keep on adding value which our competitors cannot imitate. So I reach a stage where others copy and try to catch up with us but by then we are already in an advanced stage. The other main advantage is we lay emphasis on practical studies. In technical education, it is important for students to get exposed to the industry and receive hands-on training. This requires a lot of effort and investment

CAPACITY

BUILDING 12


and have invested a lot in providing the right facilities for practical classes. Can you tell us about some of the new programmes that Caledonian is offering? In September 2011, we will be proudly introducing a Masters programme (MSc) in Maintenance Management in affiliation with Glasgow Caledonian University from UK. This is targeted towards oil and gas professionals. In the past it was delivered by faculty from GCU. But we have now agreed that GCU will train our faculty to deliver the modules. We don’t want to import knowledge. This is in line with His Majesty’s vision, as we create knowledge and learn from other experiences and share. Every year we have around 450 students graduate and so far we have produced more than 2500 graduates. We produce around 50 per cent of the engineers in the country. The complete capacity of the college is 750 students. Do you have any tie-ups with industries in Oman? Caledonian College is unique because of its relationship with the industry. We have the industry liaison group, where we have different members from the industry who have formed a committee, which meets twice a year. We get feedback from this committee about not only our students but also the requirements of the industry because they recruit out students. This group is very effective. We visit their organisations to get feedback, and they meet us every semester. We hold workshops where we get to learn about the future trends in the industry. So we incorporate these learnings into our programmes. We have made so many changes in the programmes based on the recommendations of this committee. There is nothing better than having a direct link with the industry because they will give you feedback about the quality of your graduates. We have been told that students of

Caledonian College are better than others in team work, critical thinking and leadership. The soft skills add value to our graduates and help them excel and differentiate themselves from the others. This is the educational part which is different from the content of the engineering curriculum. What about staff development? We support our students when they go to present papers in other universities and colleges across the world with an all expenses paid trip. The other thing that differentiates our college from the others is the staff development. We fund around 80 per cent of the total cost of staff development initiatives, for example encouraging faculty members to pursue further studies. This is not found in other colleges. We do this to attract high calibre staff. We also encourage Omanisation through schemes for Omani teachers and students to become academics. We do have very attractive schemes for Omanis to become academics. What, according to you, is the direction that the Omani education system needs to take for students to become worldleaders? What we are doing in Caledonian reflects the whole Omani education system. Our focus and emphasis is on adding value to the current programmes, which have been existing for the past 15 years. The other goal is bringing in programmes that is needed for future like the aforementioned Masters in Maintenance Management. Some courses might not be feasible now but they have the potential for the future. We have a strong brief that we want to be the pioneer in the sector in bringing programmes. It doesn’t matter if others copy us but we want to be the first to bring the programmes in the country. Let others learn from us, we don’t mind. That is the vision and strategy.

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The other thing is contributing to building the local capacity. We, in our own small way, are contributing to the research and development because one of our strategic goal is to be active in research. We have taken good steps in the area of engineering and we are concentrating on renewable energy because we believe that this will be the future of our country. We are going to have a centre of excellence with international research facilities and centres. We already have a few of our staff who are actively involved in this research. They have publications, research collaborations and they have interest in that field. They are also doing their PhDs in that area. Thus we are contributing to the global Omani vision of building capacity. My own personal interest and goal is to add value to our students and I see this as a very important vision for myself. I want our graduates to become experts in their field. When they hold a degree in their specialisation, they should be able to defend their degree. When they are studying for five years in our college, my desire is that my students should be knowledge creators and knowledge seekers and not just passive learners in the class. That is my personal interest. I want to see my students doing research and challenging the books and theories. That comes only when they dig deep into the knowledge they take from the classroom. And I always tell my students, don’t accept minimum from what you get in the class. The real knowledge comes when you go and search for that knowledge by reading and research. Only when you go deep, will you be able to defend your knowledge when you are sitting with an expert. We are the facilitators, but you do the research and challenge the knowledge by doing critical analyses. (For more information about courses, visit www.cce.edu.om)


VIEWPOINT

For a Paradigm Shift It is high time we asserted change with a greater willingness to be more dynamic, more challenging to enable the youth to participate and progress without any inhibition, writes B.N. Sarkar, Principal, Indian School Al Seeb

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here is now a unique shift in our approach to survive on this planet, though life appears to be stuck up between a preferable past and an uninviting present. In a strange way, probably, we are coming under the spell of economic imperialism. Changing life patterns are making excessive demand upon our individual self and circumstances. Hence, a modern professional outlook is desired for all of us, that too, immediately among our young generation. This, however, must envisage a new value chain dovetailed with greater socioeconomic accountability. Then, elements catalysing change need be crafted into a variety of dynamic opportunities –enabling youth to act, enjoy and grow with all sustaining virtues. Even the outlandish or out-dated strategy or plan of action could be revamped to encounter the unforeseen and resolve challenges.

The art of remaining engaged in any field to earn a living carries a hidden motto: one need not require the symbolic ‘albatross’ of shame and penance to be hung around one’s neck while working to sustain life. In the ever expanding

professional arena, youth is expected to have a mind-set to understand that no job or involvement is inferior and every type of work-culture has its own social and economic relevance. Young people now are exposed to the heat of a variety of political and economic disparities added with a number of other motion offences. However, beyond this harsh reality lie hope, aspiration and the inner urge of many venturesome minds to ride over

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the waves and feel the pulse of their successful future within their easy reach. Consequently, such a mixed scenario demands community leadership and social activism in order to establish a happening society. It also requires a sensible polity, allowing youth to participate and interact with all mechanisms of governance. In this, policy makers as well as the knowledge managers have to re-endeavour to provide empathy and values to accommodate non-linear programmes while engaging the young. These efforts must be more inclusive in nature and less tokenistic. Besides this, a synthesis of local and global cultures is also urgently needed to channelise young minds through many a subtle thought processes into life-excelling purpose and action. These are to be done without violence and emotional upsurge.

FAST TRACK THINKING AND PERFORMING While thinking deeply about engaging community to mobilise the young unto thought and action, stimulating “profession-cum-life – attributes” become the key rider. Good score is no longer the only indicator to justify


and ensure individual’s qualitative transformation and progress. Rather, fast track social order demands fast track ‘thinking and performing mind’-to absorb change and navigate difficult decision-making routes without losing direction. Once the elderly generation understands this aspect, they could become the real source for helping youth apply their mind to strengthen themselves in setting stimulating goals. Today, the capacity to engage oneself with full potential, under any given situation for a sustainable cause, is the vital demand of the hour. There’s a whole school of thought that asserts about teens knowing the actual difference between what is real and what is not. Probably, it is a myth and not always correct. If that would have been the case, then they would have not mostly followed the beaten track in attempting to choose their professional life! Undoubtedly, peer group does generate some kind of fraternity influence. But, the honest strive to settle down in life with age old professional degrees and diplomas without weighing their long term benefits could have forced many brilliant minds to disappear into oblivion. Ironically, academically weak, who once had no specific choice of careers, no dreams either, could possibly be seen enjoying life by virtue of their engagement, as if they had been already destined for it! Now, what could be the logic behind both of these varying situations! Let’s struggle a bit to understand this phenomenon with a normative thought process. However, in trying to do so, we might at one end stumble upon the youth affected by grinding unemployment and the ill effects of poorly organised rural, semi-urban or urban sector while at the other end, we could still find entrepreneurial ventures tempting the mortal might to go further in enhancing material success. Yes, matter is eclipsing the mind, compelling

precious human labour to glorify infrastructural design to intimidate nature and the very existence of all other forms of organic life on earth. In the last four decades, we have experienced monumental heights of success in the name of liberalisation followed by their wearied consequences, affecting human civilisation with utter scepticism and despair. The earth has been greatly disturbed and the earthly folks are in the misery of all sorts of unusual self-made complications. It certainly has an alarming impact upon the young generation for they need to live better and save this habitat in the future.

TORCHBEARERS OF THE FUTURE We need to draw a line of demarcation somewhere and urgently unlearn and use the current situation to pave the ways ahead. Each mistake must ensure a new beginning, new commitments and new realisation. Youth in this venture must be treated as absolute “beginners.” The old idea of becoming an apprentice to master a trade for a living , to be a copy writer to discover creativity to fulfil a great urge to express in the future, to be an assistant to a chemist or a scientist , to be sub-assistant to a renowned editor, to persist night after night the subtle nuances of a piece of dramatic action in the backyards of the theatre, to practice mathematic problem hour after hour, in spite of having degrees or qualifications in innumerable such fields, definitely draws our attention. The beginners in spite of requisite qualifications must undergo severe field training, to have greater affinity with their trade as they are to embrace it as well as their livelihood. Hard work and consistency with patience to master skills and attributes that define a profession could enable the one to discover more than it is initially perceived. Moreover, this precisely demands constant monitoring and mentoring by seniors who have

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already groomed themselves in order to make themselves worthy of their calling. A similar set of training schemes could be worked out for other professions too and the programme of learning pattern in such cases could be more emphasized. Subjects that demand high order thinking pattern also could be reworked upon to harness the knowledge-domain to help ‘the beginner ‘attain mastery on it. What we discover in the process is that we do not disown conventional wisdom but give a new approach to prevailing sets of learning modules. And we are asserting change with a greater willingness to be more dynamic, to be more challenging while expecting more ground made available to the young to participate and progress without any inhibition. This sort of planning is expected to be thought about in our academic institutions with much more precision and care. In the process, many courses would be required to be re-worked, many more new professional programmes would require to be added, further many policies pertaining to academic attainment would undergo change. And government or semi-government agencies funding them would have to work again and refashion their schemes to enable youth to gain larger share of advantage in seeking a career and in establishing their lives. The role of professional counselling would become enormous. Students seeking professional success have to become more knowledgeable and aware about their competence in terms of their choice. They would need to learn the art of remaining connected. Their communication skills must have greater competence. And last but not least, they would gain to mould their contemporary time to act to their suitability as they would become the torchbearers of a meaningful future. Ultimately, the selection of a career for a dynamic young life will mean a larger participation in society and in life.


INDIA OVERVIEW

Investing in

EDUCATION

Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode

The Indian education market has acquired the status of being one among the top ten educational destinations. This has prompted a beeline of not just students to the universities but also investors have begun to queue up to cash in on this boom

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he size of the Indian education sector is expected to double to $50bn by 2015 with the rise in government expenditure along with an increase in middle-class income, according to a study conducted recently. According to the report, the size of the education sector currently is pegged at $25bn, with higher education market estimated at $15bn. The government is planning to spend

about five per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) in the next five years on education, as per the study. The education sector in India is witnessing growth in private equity (PE) investment, according to HDFC. The company plans to foray into the sector, which according to Keki Mistry, Vice Chairman and CEO, HDFC, has touched $190mn in 2010.

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The education sector is also witnessing increase in hiring activities as per the employment indices of online job portals Naukri.com and Monster India. In the month of June 2010, the indices for Monster India and Naukri.com went up by nine per cent and 10 per cent, respectively. India was ranked number four on the list of the top 10 preferred destinations


for B-school aspirants, according to the findings of a survey conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC). Further, according to a worldwide survey of ‘Universal Business Schools with major international influence,’ conducted by French consulting firm SMBG amongst deans of 1000 business schools, the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (IIM-B) has been ranked 24th while IIMAhmedabad ranked 55th.

TECHNICAL EDUCATION Taking a step further, the government has approved the intended investment of $519mn to initiate the second phase of the Technical Education Quality Improvement Programme (TEQIP). Of the total project expenditure of $519mn in the second phase, the World Bank will contribute $298mn, the Centre’s contribution according to 11th Five-Year Plan is $106.8mn, while the states and private unaided institutions will invest $110.7mn and $3.42mn, respectively. The project will be open for competition and participation by all the engineering institutions approved by the AICTE.

of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), will soon sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the University of Petroleum and Energy Studies. Under the MoU, the IAU will organise workshops and conferences, and provide inputs from experts for curriculum development.

E-LEARNING Kapil Sibal, the Indian Union Minister for Human Resource Development has announced government’s plans to launch a scheme, which would bring in information, communication and technology (ICT) into elementary education. The scheme which is likely to be on the lines of the ICT scheme for higher education, would focus on the development of e-contents which would be used by students at primary and upper-primary classes for learning purposes.

Mumbai University

The minister recently unveiled a $35 low-cost computer in an attempt to revolutionise classroom education across the country. The device allows students to write and store text, browse the Internet and view videos, among other regular features. Educomp Solutions has announced an agreement with China Distance Education Holdings Ltd (CDEL), a provider of online education in China, granting the latter exclusive rights to licence and distribute Educomp’s products in China (excluding Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan).

TRAINING The training industry in India is a sunrise industry with a lot of potential. IndiaCan Education Private Limited, a 50:50 joint venture with Educomp Solutions Limited and US-based Pearson Education, plans to open 250 centres across India by the end of this financial year. It aims at training over 500,000 persons annually and to make them ‘ready-to-deploy’ in the industry by 2012. “Currently with 50 centres, we plan a pan-India network of more than 600 vocational training centres in the next 12-18 months. Each centre can realistically enrol about 1,000 students,” as per Srinath Venkatesh, Vice-President (sales, marketing and operations), IndiaCan.

The TEQIP scheme has been on since 2003, with World Bank’s assistance. The scheme was envisaged as a longterm programme of about 10-12 years, to be implemented in three phases for transformation of the technical education system. The first phase of TEQIP ended on March 31, 2009, covering 127 institutions in 13 states.

Recently, Sharekhan and Californiabased Online Trading Academy have entered into a joint venture to provide trading and investing education in India.

The Orissa government has signed memoranda of understanding (MoUs) with eight mega industries for setting up quality Industrial Training Centres (ITCs) in the state in the first phase.

Core Projects and Technologies Ltd has signed an MoU with Gujarat Knowledge Society (GKS) to impart job-oriented skill upgradation courses to students from various disciplines in colleges across Ahmedabad and Surat districts.

The Industries Association of Uttarakhand (IAU), an organisation

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?? INDIA OVERVIEW

Tata Consultancy Services Ltd (TCS) is opening its first learning and development centre for its campus trainees. The new centre is equipped to train 6,000 professionals in a year. HCL Technologies Ltd has announced a tie-up with the business process outsourcing (BPO) training institute, Orion Edutech. As per the agreement, Orion will customise its Diploma in BPO Management (DIBM) to suit HCL’s industry specific talent requirement.

FOREIGN INSTITUTES IN INDIA Many overseas business schools have come to India seeking a big revenue boost, and a chance to understand the concerns of a developing economy. In order to regulate the operation and entry of foreign educational institutions in India, the government has introduced the Foreign Educational Institutions (Regulation of Entry and Operations) Bill, 2010, in the lower house of the Parliament on May 3, 2010. Earlier, the Bill was cleared by the Union Cabinet, which proposes to allow foreign education providers to establish campuses in the country and offer degrees as well. The Indian School of Business (ISB) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy, Tufts University, US, to support the setting up of the Bharti Institute of Public Policy at the upcoming ISB campus in Mohali, Punjab. INSEAD, the business school headquartered in Fontainebleau, Paris, plans to offer a dedicated, 12 month programme in business management for mid to senior-level Indian executives, with about 10-15 years of work experience. University of the West of Scotland (UWS) has tied up with Punjab-based

GGS Group of Colleges as its India partner, besides Hyderabad-based Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University (JNTU). Yale University has signed an agreement with two of India’s leading institutions, the Indian Institute of Management-Kozhikode (IIM-K) and the Indian Institute of TechnologyKanpur (IIT-K), to develop training programmes that will create academic leadership in the country. The University of Atlanta has announced the opening of its first study centre in Indian Subcontinent at Ahmedabad. Maastricht University (UM), based in The Netherlands, inaugurated the Maastricht Education and Research Centre (MERC), in Bangalore. A subsidiary of the Maastricht University, the MERC will foster academic collaboration with Indian institutions and conduct joint researches of social relevance in India. Ahmedabad-based Indus Institute of Technology and Engineering (IITE) has collaborated with Georgian College, a leading college in Canada, to provide a unique Advanced Diploma in Mechanical Engineering Technology — Automotive Manufacturing for Indian students. “India will import about $320bn in electronics goods by 2015, from the present $32bn, which means there is huge demand and production gap,” according to Srikanth Jadchela, CEO, Synopsys Electronics Education and Research (Seer) Akademi. Infrastructure major GMR Group and Schulich School of Business of York University in Toronto, Canada, have entered into an understanding to develop a Schulich campus in Hyderabad.

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The shipping ministry has allocated $65.9mn to the Indian Maritime University to create infrastructure facilities including academic complex, administrative building, library, hostels and residential accommodation over the next five years.

GLOBAL FOOTPRINTS Indian institutes are now collaborating and establishing offshore campuses in order to increase their global footprints. The Institute of Clinical Research India (ICRI), has entered into a strategiccum-academic alliance with the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) to offer two new courses - Masters in Health Administration and Master of Science in Clinical Research. These courses will be offered through ICRI’s six campuses in Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Dehradun and Bangalore, apart from its overseas campuses in Singapore and the UK.

INVESTMENTS The education sector is one of the thrust areas for investments as emphasis is being laid on revamping the systems through increasing investments. According to the Kaizen Education Report released by Kaizen Mgmt Advisors, the pre-school segment is worth an estimated $500mn currently and is expected to grow to $1bn in the next two years. Further, the segment is growing at a compounded annual rate (CAGR) of 30 per cent. International university endowment funds have stepped up their presence in the Indian stock markets to cash in on the high returns. The number of such funds investing in India has increased from six in 2008 to around 20 in 2010, as per Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) data. Sequoia Capital, the Indian arm of the US-based venture capital firm, has


India at the forefront of cutting-edge medical technology announced its second round of funding for $5.54mn to K12 Techno Services Pvt Ltd, which runs 70 Gowtham Model School units in Andhra Pradesh. Edutor Technologies plans to raise $3mn to expand its rural customer base for the launch of new content through its handheld learning device. The company has decided to tie up with Government schools to tap the rural market. Hewlett-Packard (HP) has announced its contribution of $1mn – to the newly set up Education Innovation Challenge Fund for India – to support innovative initiatives in science, math and technology education among students and teachers in India. PE firm Mayfield India announced that it has invested $8.73mn into Bharti’s Centum Learning. According

to Sanjeev Duggal, CEO and executive director, Centum Learning, they would need to invest close to $21.83mn in the next two to three years in various activities as he observed that there are a lot of opportunities in M&A’s in the vocational training space. Educomp Solutions Ltd, an integrated education company, has bought strategic stake in engineering test prep player Vidya Mandir Classes Pvt Ltd (VMC) for around $7.34mn. Everonn Business Education Limited (EBEL), a Chennai-based education services firm, plans to open 500 Indigrow Institute of Professional Studies (IIPS) centres by 2015. The company would invest $216,679 in each centre. Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), a premium

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management education provider with centres in Mumbai, Shirpur and Bangalore, has begun operations from a new facility in Hyderabad and plans to set up an integrated campus with an outlay of $22.59mn at Jedcherla. The second campus of the Indian School of Business (ISB) is coming up in Mohali. Parkash Singh Badal, Chief Minister of Punjab, laid the foundation stone for the campus, which would start the first academic session in the city for the post graduate programme in management in April 2012. The Government plans to set up four new Indian Institutes of Mass Communication (IIMCs) from the next academic year in Kerala, Jammu and Kashmir, Vidarbha in Maharashtra and Aizwal in Mizoram, as per Ms Ambika Soni, Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting.


INDIA LISTING

HONOUR ROLL

Your guide to the best institutions across India

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he Indian education system enjoys an elite position in the global arena today. And with each passing year, students from all over the world head towards the country to pursue various academic degreees. According to statistics, India has the second largest higher education network in the world. There are universities focusing on the study of medicine, arts, languages, journalism, social work, business, commerce, planning, architecture, engineering, and other specialised

studies. The medium of instruction in most of the institutes is English and some even conduct special language classes for students who speak English as a second language. With over 343 universities and 17000 colleges, it maybe hard for students to decide which institutes are the best. We have narrowed down some of the names of the prestigious and famous institues for your easy referenceâ&#x20AC;Ś

ENGINEERING One of the most popular choices

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for students, India has a plethora of colleges and universities offering degrees in various engineering specialisations. Among these, the Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) are at the top with IIT â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Kanpur ruling the roost. Traditionally there are seven IITs: IIT Kharagpur, IIT Bombay, IIT Madras, IIT Kanpur, IIT Delhi, IIT Guwahati, and IIT Roorkee. But recently eight new IITs have been introduced as well. The National Institutes of Technology (NIT) are equally revered, for instance NIT Warangal and/or NIT Trichy. But apart from these there are many


• University Visvesvaraya College of

• KPB Hinduja College of Commerce

Engineering (UVCE), Bangalore • PSG College of Technology, Coimbatore

• Mount Carmel College, Bangalore

MEDICINE It is no secret that India has some of the best medical colleges across the globe. Be it medical research or doctors at the forefront of groundbreaking surgical procedures, India is a beacon of light for healthcare development in and across Asia. The most renowned medical institutes are: • All India Institute of Medical Sciences

(AIIMS), New Delhi

and Economics, Mumbai

SOCIAL SCIENCES AND HUMANITIES From journalism to history to linguistics – for those looking for a degree in liberal arts, India houses some excellent institutions. Some of the best ones include: • Lady Shri Ram College for Women,

New Delhi • St. Stephen’s College, New Delhi • Loyola College, Chennai • St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai and

• Maulana Azad Medical College, New • • • • • • • •

Delhi University College of Medical Science and Research Centre, New Delhi Christian Medical College, Vellore Armed Forces Medical College, Pune Lady Hardinge Medical College, New Delhi B.J. Medical School (BJMC), Ahmedabad Grant Medical College, Mumbai Kasturba Medical College, Manipal Seth GS Medical College, Mumbai

COMMERCE

more engineering institutes worth considering:

Let’s talk business. Not all of want to be doctors and engineers. And with the workforce really opening up, commerce subjects have become very popular. Wondering which ones are the best? We’ll tell you: • Shri Ram College of Commerce, New

• Delhi Technological University • Birla Institute of Technology and

Science, Pilani • Vellore Institute of Technology • International Institute of Information • • • •

Technology, Hyderabad RV College of Engineering, Bangalore College of Engineering, Pune Sardar Vallabhbhai National Institute of Technology, Surat Netaji Subhash Institute of Technology, New Delhi

Delhi • St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata • Loyola College, Chennai • Lady Shri Ram College for Women,

New Delhi

• • • • • •

SCIENCE The study of sciences has always been popular. We all realise the crucial role science plays in our lives. From electricity to biology – everything in and around us revolve around science. If science has piqued your curiosity and you are keen to pursue a career in the field, then why not consider some of the colleges in India associated with the finest degree programmes in science. • • • • • •

• Shri Narsee Monjee College of

Commerce and Economics, Mumbai

• Symbiosis Society’s College of Arts &

Commerce, Pune

• RA Podar College of Arts and

Commerce, MUmbai • St. Joseph’s College, Bangalore

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Kolkata Christ University, Bangalore Miranda House, New Delhi Fergusson College, Pune Stella Maris College, Chennai Sophia College for Women, Mumbai Symbiosis Society’s College of Arts & Commerce, Pune

• •

St. Stephen’s College, New Delhi St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata Miranda House, New Delhi Mount Carmel College, Bangalore Sri Venkateshwara College, New Delhi Osmania University College for Women, Hyderabad Mithibai Arts Chauhan Institute, Mumbai Sri Bhagawan Mahaveer Jain College, Bangalore Scottish Church College, Kolkata Ramnarain Ruia College, Mumbai


INTERVIEW

DESTINATION ABROAD

IDP just might be the answer if you’re looking for some assistance with your university applications. Kala Rao, Business Unit Manager, IDP Education explains how… Kindly give us a quick history of IDP and its core services. IDP is the pre-eminent placement and support service for people pursuing an international education experience and a leading provider of English language proficiency services. IDP Education Pty Ltd is the world’s largest student placement provider. For 40 years, IDP Education has played a major role in international education and development. IDP is co-owned by 38 Australian universities and Seek Ltd, Australia’s leading online employment and training company. During this time, IDP has placed more than 300,000 international students. Each year, students from various countries choose IDP to help them transform their dreams of international study into reality. Whether it is counselling support by a qualified student counsellor to make the right choice of international education destination, providing accurate information, smoothing out the application process or managing visa applications, international students really are better placed with IDP. IDP endeavours to stay in touch with the students we have placed and help them transition into their new environment. You have also recently started helping students applying to the US as well. Kindly tell us a little more about that. Recently, IDP has commenced recruiting

turnaround time much faster. Visa applications maybe a daunting task. In what ways does IDP help prospective students through the application process? All our education consultants are aware of the visa procedures for different countries. Hence they are able to guide the students well and help them present all the documents in the correct order.

international students for select institutions in the United States, Canada and the UK. We have contracted with a number of universities in these countries. In what ways would you say applying through IDP is better than individual applications? All our counsellors are well qualified to impart the right information. They are committed to helping students make the right education choice in the best possible course and institution. This personal connection is invaluable in course selection, application, enrollment, student visa application assistance and pre-departure advice to ensure you are well prepared and committed to reaching your full potential. We also have direct contacts with the universities that are contracted with us, making the application

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Do you also help students secure aid/scholarships? IDP does guide the students by advising them of the various available scholarships and the process involved in seeking these scholarships. Do you help students with predeparture formalities as well? Pre- Departure is one of the most important part of our service. Our counsellor will assist with accommodation, airport reception and organise a pre-departure briefing for the student to help orient him/her to life and study in the new destination. What would your advice be to prospective students? Seek advice from an IDP counsellor and start the process at least a year in advance. Requirements are country and university specific for admissions as well as visa processes. Hence, seeking guidance at the right time would ensure a smoother journey for the student.


ON THE LIGHTER SIDE

College Confessions College life is all about pulling pranks and random funny moments. Well, maybe not entirely…but here are some confessions from roommates we simply had to share Gift Wrap This one time, my friends and I decided to pull a prank on our college roommate while he was on vacation. We wrapped everything that was his with cling film. His clothes, shoes, pillows, the pens and pencils on his desk, and even the TV in his room! He was stunned when he returned and we had a good laugh over it (and helped him ‘unwrap’ everything after that)!

Twilight Zone I like to put glitter on my friend’s freshly washed face towels. Why? I think it’s funny to see his face all sparkly after a wash – just like Edward Cullen (Twilight).

Dental Trauma I just realised my roommate and I have been using the same toothbrush for months now. I guess the joke’s really on both of us.

What’s In A Name? My roommate’s a foreign exchange student from Korea. We’ve lived together for the past five months and I

still don’t know her name. I’ve resorted to calling ‘hey’ since it’d be a little too awkward to ask her now, “So, what’s your name again?”

roommate’s iPod and replaced them with Rebecca Black’s Friday.

Pizza Delivery

My brother and a bunch of his friends decided to pull a prank on one of their roommates. So they carried his smart car through the entrance hall of their campus and put it into one of the 10person elevators. It took him seven hours to eventually find his car (by accident on his way upstairs) and another two to actually get it out of the elevator.

During my freshman year, I had a super annoying roommate. After she moved out, I posted fliers around the entire dorm telling people to text their favourite colour followed by their favourite pizza topping to her number to win a free pizza. For a month she kept wondering why kept receiving random texts saying “Pink Pepperoni” or “Blue Chicken ‘n’ Cheese”.

Snow Patrol

Resident Evil

Last year, in my sophomore year at university, it’d snowed three feet. Being unable to drive because the roads were unploughed still, my roommates and I sneaked over to our neighbour’s entry way at midnight. We made a snow wall covering their whole doorway, about eight feet high, six feet across and four feet thick. We still don’t know who our neighbours are.

I live in an on-campus apartment complex with two guys per room. For the entire first semester, I “accidentally” left things up on my monitor like, the Wikipedia page for schizophrenia or websites for ‘Managing Your Anger’ or ‘Dealing With the Voices’. Finally, I made sure to leave out long documents about unsolved murders, with notes and highlights all over them. Needless to say, it spooked him out and he avoided me as much as possible. But the rest of us found it so funny.

Carpool

Music Mismatch I deleted all the songs on my

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SPONSORED FEATURE

University of Wollongong in Dubai

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he University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD) is one of the UAE’s oldest and most prestigious universities. Established in 1993 by the University of Wollongong in Australia, currently ranked in the leading universities in the world, UOWD represented a very early Australian initiative in the Gulf region. As an independent UAE institution of higher education, UOWD attracts students not just from the UAE and Australia but from all over the world. Approximately 3,500 students representing almost 100 nationalities are currently enrolled at UOWD and enjoy a quality academic experience. UOWD offers a variety of specialist Undergraduate and Postgraduate programmes in the areas of Business, Finance and Information Technology. All UOWD degree programs are accredited by the UAE Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research and are also audited by the Australian Universities Quality Agency. Their internationally recognised qualifications enable UOWD graduates to pursue rewarding careers in Dubai’s burgeoning employment market. UOWD programmes include: Undergraduate ¡ Bachelor of Business Administration ¡ Bachelor of Commerce (with specialisations in Accounting, Finance, HRM, International Business, Management, Marketing) ¡ Bachelor of Computer Science (Digital Security Systems, Multimedia Technology) ¡ Bachelor of Internet Science & Technology ¡ Bachelor of Information Technology (MIS) Postgraduate ¡ Master of Business Administration (MBA)

¡ Master of International Business ¡ Master of Quality Management ¡ Master of Strategic Human Resource Management ¡ Master of Strategic Marketing ¡ Master of Information Technology Management ¡ Master of Engineering Management ¡ Master of Applied Finance & Banking ¡ Master of Science (Logistics) ¡ Master of International Studies ¡ Master of Mass Media and Communication

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Research ¡ Doctor of Business Administration ¡ Doctor of Philosophy Contact details: IDP Education Pty Ltd, Behind Madinat Plaza, Madinat Qaboos,Oman Tel: +968 24696452/ 53 or University of Wollongong in Dubai, Blocks 5, 14 and 15, Dubai Knowledge Village. Ph: 800-UOWD. Email: info@uowdubai.ac.ae Website: www.uowdubai.ac.ae


SPONSORED FEATURE

SULTAN QABOOS UNIVERSITY

Future starts here

T

hose who seek excellence and want to be unparalleled in science and knowledge, Sultan Qaboos University (SQU), which was founded in 1986, is the right place to satisfy their aspirations. The university provides its students with all sorts of necessary support to help them succeed and achieve academic excellence. It has state of the art laboratories and equipment, five technical and general libraries, and hosts and participates in various national and international conferences, seminars, and symposia. Backed by specialised centres such as the Centre for Career Guidance, Student Counselling Centre, Centre for Educational Technology, Information Systems Centre, Language Centre, nine scientific and research centres, the deanships of Admissions and Registration, Student Affairs, Research, and Postgraduate Studies, students enjoy the best services that provide them with an ideal environment for academic achievements. Academic Programmes: Besides research, community service, and international cooperation, teaching is considered the university’s foremost mission. SQU offers Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctoral degrees in its colleges of Arts and Social Sciences, Commerce and Economics, Education, Agricultural and Marine Sciences, Medicine and Health Sciences, Nursing, Law, Engineering, and Science. The nine colleges offer 56 Master’s and 27 Doctoral programmes. Students wishing to complete their studies in Master’s and Doctorate programmes can apply according to certain conditions and standards associated with each specialisation. SQU also provides a number of full and partial scholarships on

an annual basis. For a Bachelor’s degree, students are admitted to the university after completing their general diploma in school through the Higher Education Admission Centre. Since graduate programmes constitute an integral part of building research capacity and provide the country with highly qualified and specialised cadres, the University will expand its Master’s and Doctoral programmes in areas of importance to the Sultanate. As the largest scientific edifice in the Sultanate, the university is proud of its standards of scientific quality. A number of its academic programmes have gained academic accreditation from various international institutions. In order to develop this aspect, the university drafted its strategic plan 2009-2013 to enhance the research capacities and basic infrastructure of the university and provide necessary expertise to effectively contribute to the development of the economy, enrichment of human knowledge and adoption of deliberate strategies. This is in order to achieve its ambitious goals and develop itself to become a first-degree research institution that plays its role in the dissemination of new knowledge on a large scale and contributes to the development of Oman and the world in general.

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Research and the march towards achievement Research is considered a focal point from which the university moves to the future. Due to the availability of a solid ground and generous support for research provided by His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said - may God protect him - SQU launched strategic research to achieve accelerated success in addressing many issues and topics in the areas of environment, energy, health sciences, humanities and social sciences, communications, and industrial resources. The university has funded 87 research grants and signed 31 research agreements in 2010. Along with the scientific advisory services, the university carries out joint scientific projects with various universities. In 2010, the university also organised 26 conferences and symposia and published 380 papers in renowned international scientific journals. In light of these numbers that demonstrate the size of scientific activity of the university, the postgraduate students, in master’s and doctoral degrees, can also be part of this scene through presenting their ideas and research projects and serving the community and the nation. For more information, visit: www.squ.edu.om


SPONSORED FEATURE

MURDOCH UNIVERSITY

Research at Murdoch University, Perth, Western Australia

M

urdoch University is a dynamic, modern university with a national reputation for excellence in teaching, research, and student satisfaction. Established in 1973 as a research university, it is conveniently located approximately 11 minutes by train from Perth’s city centre and 10 minutes by car or bus from the social and cultural centre of Fremantle. Sophisticated yet uncomplicated, the lifestyle in Western Australia is a relaxed one. Located in Perth, Murdoch University gets the privilege of enjoying the gorgeous West Coast sunsets, beautiful white sand beaches, scenic natural landscapes as well as a cosmopolitan city setting, with blue skies and sunny climate almost all year round! Murdoch University is committed to the pursuit of excellence and has achieved an international reputation for the quality of its teaching and research. With reputable industry partners, Murdoch is one of the leading research universities in Australia. The research conducted at Murdoch makes a difference – many of Murdoch’s research projects have resulted in benefits to society, including plant disease control, animal health, clean air, waste treatment, and environmental technology. The University takes pride in the fact that it has some of the best-qualified academic staff in Australia. The university community also believes that a student’s time as Murdoch is

much more than getting a degree. Thus, Murdoch places much emphasis on the whole university lifestyle. After all, university education is not just about research, lectures or the tutorials, it is not only what one learns in class or in the laboratory, it is really what an individual gains from the entire experience. With a student population of 18,000, including some 3000 international students from over 100 countries around the world, excellent staffstudent relations, state-of-the-art facilities, excellent student services, and a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses, Murdoch might just be the experience that you are looking for!

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Murdoch has an open door academic policy, which means that students can approach academic staff at any time, rather than only during a set appointment time per week. Academic staff are always very approachable and friendly, and questions are always welcome. There is always great communication between students and staff, which is probably one of the reasons why Murdoch is the only Australian university to have achieved a 5-star ranking for Graduate Satisfaction 15 times (Good Universities Guide).


Discoverers Welcome

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SPONSORED FEATURE

Kaplan International Colleges

K

aplan International Colleges (KIC) is part of Kaplan Inc., one of the world’s leading providers of lifelong education, owned by The Washington Post Company. Headquartered in London, United Kingdom, KIC has partnered with some of the UK’s top universities and offers international students preparatory courses that when completed successfully at the required level, guarantee students a place on their chosen degree programme at their partner university.

KIC’s Foundation Certificate and Diploma programmes prepare students for undergraduate studies, while it’s Graduate Diploma and Pre Masters programmes prepare students for postgraduate study. These programmes

are a combination of academic skills, English language skills and subject modules, delivered by tutors who are highly qualified and experienced. KIC also offers academic programmes integrated with English language preparation for students with a low English level. Students completing pathway programmes at our colleges can progress to a range of exciting degrees at the college’s partner university in the broad subject areas of science, engineering, business, law and social sciences. KIC’s network of partner universities is growing continuously. Currently, KIC have colleges in partnership with the universities of Bournemouth, Brighton,

32

City University London, Cranfield, Glasgow, Liverpool, Nottingham Trent, Sheffield and Westminster. Each of the Colleges offers students a unique study opportunity. Whilst most of the KIC Colleges are located on the campus of the partner university, for those students who want to experience different study environments, there is also the opportunity to study at a purpose built college, before progressing to the partner university campus. KIC is committed to equipping international students with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed at a university in the UK, so when they step out of KIC and into university, they’re confident, fully prepared and on the path to success!


Achieve university success in the UK Enrol on a Foundation, Diploma or Pre-Masters course and get guaranteed progression (on successful completion) to one of nine prestigious universities in the UK. - Bournemouth University - Nottingham Trent University - University of Liverpool

- City University London - University of Brighton - University of Sheffield

- Cranfield University - University of Glasgow - University of Westminster

Art and Design t#VTJOFTT t$PNQVUJOH t&OHJOFFSJOH t-BX t.FEJBt4DJFODF t4PDJBM4DJFODFTt4DIPMBSTIJQTBWBJMBCMF

For more information and to apply, please contact Al Ahlam Higher Education and Training Services, official representative of Kaplan International Colleges in Oman. Address: Villa 485, Way No 1007, off Seih Al Maleh Street, Qurum Block 210, Muscat Tel: +968-24562623 / +968-99473709 Email: info@ahlameducation.com Web: www.ahlameducation.com

www.kic.org.uk

Al Ahlam Higher Education & Training Services


SPONSORED FEATURE

UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN QUEENSLAND

Distance education

T

he University of Southern Queensland (USQ) is an Australian and Queensland Governmentaccredited University with multiple awards for providing quality teaching and student support and recognised both nationally and internationally for its outstanding distance education programs. For over 40 years, we’ve been driven by personal support, understanding, and respecting each and every student’s goals. Many of our students study online, and we provide distance education for students in over 80 countries. USQ was also the inaugural winner of the International Council for Open and Distance Learning (ICDE) prize for institutional excellence for its global education initiatives and expertise in providing flexible learning opportunities around the world Distance study provides you with the opportunity to study regardless of location, and can allow you to continue meeting other life commitments such as work, family or travel. We provide specialised online programmes designed to make your distance education experience a rewarding one. You can vary the number of courses you take each semester to further suit your circumstances. You can also choose to study part of your program by distance and part on-campus at our Toowoomba, Springfield or Fraser Coast campuses. So whether you are studying towards your first career, want to improve your current situation or are looking to broaden your horizons and study something you love,

we’re ready to work alongside you to see your goals fulfilled. As a distance education student, you will have access to the same high level academic and student support that oncampus students receive. You will have access to all USQ resources, including; • online access to USQ library resources, • UConnect (our online study environment), • free email accounts, • online counselling. The only real difference is that you do not have to attend lectures, with the majority of your communication between lecturers and students readily available via email, online discussion boards, video chat, intensive residential (on-campus) schools and telephone rather than face-to-face.

34

Studying via distance education, or online, means you are provided with all your study materials for each semester, either through the mail or online. These materials are divided into comprehensive weekly portions, keeping your studies in line with what’s happening on-campus – but you are in control and have the flexibility to tailor these materials so that you can study at your own pace during the semester. At USQ, studying online doesn’t mean that you have to feel separate to everyone else. We understand the challenges of studying via distance and provide a high level of individual support and assistance, and the internet means your study community is as close as your computer. Want to know more? Please contact us: Email: international@usq.edu.au Web: www.internationalstudy.com.au


No time to study on campus?

Study via distance education and fast track your career

With 40 years experience in delivering internationally awarded distance (online) education – USQ prides itself on the support we offer you. Studying with us means you will be studying with an Australian accredited University that offers internationally recognised programs and provides you with the skills and support to help you succeed in your chosen career. Regardless of your location, we will do our best to keep you connected to your future ambitions. You can choose to study from a wide variety of degrees including: • English Language and Pathways • Business and Law • Creative Arts

• Education • Engineering and Spatial Science • Health

Our distance (online) programs are offered at a number of levels including: • Diploma • Bachelor • Postgraduate Certificated

• Postgraduate Diploma • Masters • Doctorate Distance Education

• Humanities and Communication • Information Technology • Research

Contact us Email: international@usq.edu.au Web: internationalstudy.com.au Skype: usq.international Toowoomba

Springfield

Fraser Coast

CRICOS: QLD 00244B NSW 02225M

Imagine not having to give up your job to study what you love, or being able to raise a family, work in your business and learn all at the same time. With the University of Southern Queensland's (USQ) distance education, you can.


SPONSORED FEATURE

Navitas: International Studies

N

avitas is the world’s leading pathway provider allowing students all over the world access to higher education in United Kingdom , Australia, USA, Canada and Singapore. Navitas teaches only international students and as a result, students get a personalised experience with smaller class sizes and extra lessons around their lectures to ensure that students get the best results possible. Navitas operates on a tri-mester system meaning that students can join in either September, January or May ensuring that no time is lost. Navitas offers a range of Degree pathways at both Undergraduate and Postgraduate level and guarantees to bring out the best potential in all of its students. We look forward to welcoming you to one of our colleges soon. What we can offer you Navitas offers a wide range of education services to suit your individual situation and your aspirations. We tailor our courses to meet your specific needs, from fast-track academic studies to additional English language support. With flexible entry dates, you can choose when you want to start your programme. And you also have a choice of exciting, friendly, multicultural destinations for your study – from the beaches and rainforests of Australia, to the mountains and lakes of Vancouver, or the cultural heritage of England. University programmes If you’re planning on going to university, Navitas offers pathway programs to help you get there. Combined with our academic and student support services, Navitas programmes help you feel much better prepared for university life. High school and foundation programmes, degree transfer programmes (DTP)

and English preparation are available at many of our campuses. Through our colleges and our campuses at leading universities, you can also study a range of university level programs. Some of these will enable you to fast track your studies and even earn two qualifications (for example, a Diploma and a Bachelor degree) when you graduate.

Quality education and training Our partner universities are internationally renowned for teaching and research, and most of our colleges are located directly on their campus. You will enjoy full access to all university facilities and services, including libraries, computer labs, sporting facilities, on-campus accommodation and employment services.

English language Navitas is the largest provider of English language training in Australia. Through our wide range of programmes, we help students, teachers, travellers and migrants develop their English language skills for further study, work and life. Our specialist language school, ACL, is world-renowned for teaching international students the skills they need for academic study. We also provide settlement and integration programmes for migrants and refugees through the Adult Migrant English Programmes.

All Navitas colleges and campuses are accredited by the appropriate government organisations for their country, including the Australian Government Department of Education, Science & Training (DEST) and the British Council. They all report regularly to, and are audited by, government departments and industry associations in each country, to ensure they comply with all current legal guidelines. With up to 26 years’ experience in education and training, Navitas training providers are respected members of key industry organisations, including English Australia and the Australian Council for Private Education and Training (ACPET).

You can choose to study General English, English for Business, International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC) preparation, as well as many programmes that combine English language skills with unique cultural experiences. Workforce Navitas provides workforce programmes, offering employers business training solutions to meet their requirements for ‘work-ready’, skilled employees, and to provide learners and clients with relevant, practical tertiary and vocational skills, work experiences and support in their career development and working lives. Employees can obtain a range of professional qualifications, and improve their communication and management skills. We can also help our graduates with work placements when they have finished their studies.

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Supporting your study Study with Navitas, and you’ll be part of a supportive community that will help you develop personally, and maintain a balanced lifestyle, as well as achieve your full academic and career potential. We offer more academic and student support than traditional education providers. We know you’ll need some help adjusting to your new home, so our campuses have a range of student support services. Most of our lecture classes contain less than 40 students, and tutorial and workshop groups are small. Academic English programmes have a maximum of 12-18 students per class. We also provide more teaching hours – a four hour teaching block per course per week in most classes – so you have the opportunity to fully understand your studies, and fast-track if you want to.


LISTING

UNIVERSITIES AND COLLEGES IN OMAN PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS Sultan Qaboos University Tel: 24141111 Fax: 24413391 Website: www.squ.edu.om

College of Banking and Financial Studies Tel: 24505796/ 24505843/ 24505832/ 24502288 Fax: 24502525 Email: info@cbfs.edu.om Website: www.cbfs.edu.om

Ibra College of Technology Tel: 25587800 Fax: 25549020 Email: information@ict.edu.om Website: www.ict.edu.om

Higher College of Technology Tel: 24473600 Fax: 24473699 Website: www.hct.edu.om

Institute of Sharia Sciences Tel: 24700042 Fax: 24780199 Website: www.iofss.net

College of Education (Rustaq) Tel: 26876202 Fax: 26877026 Website: rustaq.mohe.gov.om

Former College of Education (Sohar) Tel: 26721091 Fax: 26720160 Website: www.mohe.gov.om

Former College of Education (Sur) Tel: 25544150 Fax: 25544751 Website: www.mohe.gov.om

Former College of Education (Nizwa) Tel: 25431376 Fax: 25431112 Website: www.mohe.gov.om

Former College of Education (Ibri) Tel: 25690159 Fax: 25691696 Website: www.mohe.gov.om

Former College of Education (Salalah) Tel: 23226611 Fax: 23225620 Website: www.mohe.gov.om

Nizwa College of Technology Tel: 25431021 Fax: 25431020 Website: www.nct.edu.om

Musanna College of Technology Tel: 26869080 Fax: 26869257 Website: www.manpower.gov.om

Shinas College of Technology Tel: 26852800/ 26852900 Fax: 26747426 Email: shinas@ctshinas.edu.om Website: www.ctshinas.edu.om

Salalah College of Technology Tel: 23226277 Fax: 23226267 Website: www.sct.edu.om

Ibri College of Technology Tel: 25690664 Fax: 25690676 Email: ibrictwebteam@yahoo.com Website: www.ibrict.edu.om

Institutes of Health Sciences Tel: 24560085 Fax: 24560384 Website: www.moh.gov.om

Oman Assistant Pharmacy Institute Tel: 24564042 Fax: 24564042 Website: www.moh.gov.om

Oman Nursing Institute Tel: 24562775 Fax: 24562388 Website: www.moh.gov.om

Muscat Nursing Institute Tel: 24562676 Fax: 24565879 Website: www.moh.gov.om

Rustaq Nursing Institute Tel: 26877181 Fax: 26877182 Website: www.moh.gov.om

Nizwa Nursing Institute Tel: 25425907 Fax: 25425908 Website: www.moh.gov.om

Ibra Nursing Institute Tel: 25570073 Fax: 25570076 Website: www.moh.gov.om

Sur Nursing Institute Tel: 25543901 Fax: 25543902 Website: www.moh.gov.om

Salalah Nursing Institute Tel: 23216535 Fax: 23216049 Website: www.moh.gov.om

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PRIVATE INSTITUTIONS Sohar University Tel: 26720101 Fax: 26720102 Website: www.soharuni.edu.om

Majan College Tel: 24730400 Fax: 24730490 Email: admissions@majancollege.edu.om Website: www.majancollege.edu.om

Modern College of Business And Science Tel: 24583583/ 24583538 Fax: 24583584 Email: info@mcbs.edu.om Website: www.mcbs.edu.om

Caledonian College of Engineering Tel: 24536165 Fax: 24535675 Email: cceng@omantel.net.om Website: www.cce.edu.om

Al-Zahra College for Girls Tel: 244607299 Website: www.zahracol.edu.om

Mazoon University College Tel: 24513315/ 24513316/ 24513343 Fax: 24513364 Email: mazoonco@omantel.net.om Website: www.mazooncollege.edu.om

Oman Medical College (Bowshar Campus) Tel: 24504608 Fax: 24504820 Website: www.omc.edu.om

Oman Medical College (Sohar Campus) Tel: 26844004 Fax: 26843545 Email: sohar@omc.edu.om Website: www.omc.edu.om

Sur University College Tel: 25542888 Fax: 25540737 Email: suc@suc.edu.om Website: www.suc.edu.om

Waljat Colleges of Applied Sciences Tel: 24446660/ 24449194/ 24449155/ 24446899 Fax: 24449196/ 24449197 Email: waljatcm@omantel.net.om Website: www.waljatcolleges.edu.om

Middle East College of Information Technology Tel: 24531400 Fax: 24446028 Email: info@mecit.edu.om Website: www.mecit.edu.om

Al Buraimi University College Tel: 25641866 Fax: 25641855 Email: info@buc.edu.om Website: www.buc.edu.om

Scientific College of Design Tel: 24513232/ 24513233 Fax: 24513213 Email: info@scd.edu.om Website: www.scdoman.info

Muscat College Tel: 24501181/ 24594376/ 24503821/ 24501161 Fax: 24504954 Email: info@muscatcollege.edu.om Website: www.muscatcollege.edu.om

Oman College of Management and Technology Tel: 26893366/ 26893003 Fax: 26894070/ 26893068 Email: omancollege@omancollege.edu.om Website: www.omancollege.edu.om

International College of Engineering and Management Tel: 24512000 Fax: 24521355 Email: info@icemoman.com Website: www.icemoman.com

Oman Tourism and Hospitality Academy Tel: 24521105/ 24521150 Fax: 24522283 Email: office@otha.edu.om Website: www.otha.edu.om

University of Nizwa Tel: 25446234/ 25446200 Fax: 25443400 Website: www.unizwa.edu.om

Dhofar University Tel: 23225061 Fax: 23225064 Email: du@du.edu.om Website: www.du.edu.om

Gulf College Tel: 24600665 Fax: 24600226 Email: gcollege@omantel.net.om Website: www.gulfcollegeoman.com

International Maritime College Oman Tel: 24521466/ 24521499 Fax: 24521446 Email: info@imcoman.net Website: www.imcoman.net

Oman Dental College Tel: 24696171 Fax: 24696174 Email: info@omandentalcollege.org Website: www.omandentalcollege.org

German University of Technology Oman Tel: 24493051 Fax: 24495568 Email: info@gutech.edu.om Website: www.gutech.edu.om

Bayan College Tel: 24691183 Fax: 24693311 Email: amaal@bayancollege.edu.om Website: www.bayancollege.edu.om

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