For the first time, I have attended in OBE-SCL workshop for 12 days which was held in Shaikh Zayed University in April 2017. After completion workshop we supposed to submit our teaching portfolio and I also submitted my portfolio to HEDP. After evaluation of my portfolio, I shortlisted for interview and after conducted interview, I selected for advanced OBE workshop which held in UTM, Malaysia. Finally, I could take as qualified training candidates to go to Johor Bahru, Malaysia which has done in April, 2018 and had the privilege and proud of attending the workshop in UTM.
In the first OBE workshop which held in my university (Shaikh Zayed University) I studied about what are OBE and its benefits. I also learned about program educational outcomes (PEO), program learning outcomes (PO), course outcomes (CO) and learning outcome (LO). I also got information about assessment, types of assessment, assessment cycle, teaching and assessment planning and continues quality improvement (CQI). I have also studied about informal cooperative learning structure, supporting students learning, cooperative learning and design an effective learning environmental using cooperative learning.
Surly, before taking this workshop I also used and implemented some parts of OBE system in my teaching such as making syllabus, course outcomes, group activity, formative assessment and rubrics system.
These things I have learned in Purdue university at USA in 2011. For the first time I made course syllabus which has course outcomes, goals, teaching and learning activity, assessment, policy and grading criteria. But after OBE-SCL workshop at SZU I got better and wider concept about OBE-SCL. During workshop not only, me but also other lecturers had a lot of questions and misconception about OBE-SCL implementation in ministry of higher education especially in our university. I really had problem with PEO (Program Educational Objectives), PO (Program Outcomes), and Course Outcomes mapping and their alignment with instruction (teaching and learning activities) and assessment. After discussion with participant and working in groups and brings examples or story of UTM then many misconceptions were solved.
In the workshop, we have OBE-SCL four books and well-organized power points slides which made by UTM professors. If I had some misconceptions I asked from UTM professors and for better understanding I can search in google and read about the issue in details.
I think that this workshop was the best way to deliver the OBE-SCL approach and contents to encourage the lecturers to handle the 21th century needs and challenges. OBE covered many parts and all the parts were important and have link with each other’s. but in my opinion, I like particularly the PEO, PO, CO and LO and their mapping to inform lecturers, students, stockholders and society of their responsibilities and achievements. So, this is why in this workshop I made the defined my own faculty PO and my course CO. the second main important issue was the Constructive Alignment because the very pathway and roadmap for our progress and what we align our outcome we must design our teaching and learning activities and finally we have chosen that kind of assessment which can easily achieve our outcomes. For the long-term achievements CQI is the best way to continue. In any university OBE-SCL can be implemented, but best opportunities make way for best implementation.
Definitely, the advanced OBE and SCL workshop have met my standards which I desired in professional and academic life. Those points (PEO, PO, CO and LO mapping, rubrics for assessment and constructive alignment) which were not so clear for me, now it is cleared. This workshop covered and meet all the standards which related to OBE-SCL and explained by well qualified professors.
My goal was to attend the OBE-SCL workshop to know more about OBE system. Because our ministry of higher education has clear mission to implement OBE-SCL in public universities. I also want to become good champion (in order to develop curriculum in the light of OBE and SCL), to utilize from oversea professors’ and champions’ experiences, understandings and impressions in relation to the contemporary approaches and educational systems, to change the current outdated teaching and learning approaches to OBE-SCL system. When I learned and change myself then I can easily implement and share with my lectures in our university through workshops. Finally, after obtaining this workshop I complete agree and satisfied that OBE-SCL education approach is the only way to solve the 21th century challenges and response to the society need.
First time I think this system will not work or implement in Afghanistan situation but after completion the workshop and learned about UTM OBE story, I understand that OBE-SCL can implement in any situation just it need strong commitment and without OBE-SCL system our graduates will not know about their responsibilities. As a lecturer now, I have a lot responsibility to change the traditional system to OBE system. For that purpose, I need regularly conduct researches in terms of updating and redefining the process of learning. As a learner, I found that OBE-SCL is a long-life process to be learnt and follow the CQI cycles.
After the completion of OBE-SCL workshop, I understand that our current education system need to improve specially to publish PEO, PO, CO and LO and their exact mapping. In the current system our PEO, PO, CO and LO are not off to marks and need to improve. This is why the OBE-SCL system is very important and it starting with clear picture (PEO, PO, CO and LO). I understand the importance of constructive alignment and how to implement in real lesson. We all the champions have strong commitment for further improvement.
After the completion of OBE-SCL workshop some of my ideas are change such as OBE-SCL will not implement in large class in term of students, stock holder opinions regarding curriculum, rubrics for assessment and so on. Now I understand, that for faculty need to have well organized PEO, PO and LO and their mapping.
One thing I personally would like to improve upon is define course outcomes, design teaching and learning activities and assessment to assess the target outcomes. In our faculty all lecturers will redefine their course outcomes, teaching and learning activities and assessment according to the OBE-SCL standards.
In my opinions, some of activities need to be done in the class or give it home task to done it home. For examples, every participant need to define or redefine their course learning outcomes, teaching and learning activities and assessment for complete course during workshop.
OBE- SCL have many concepts, but for me making PEO and PO and their assessment is very important and this might be done with help of stockholders and alumni association. So, we really need the two sectors contributions.
I had few academic trips to foreign countries but this I found this academic trip regarding advance OBE and SCL workshop one of the meaningful and constructive events of my life because it genuinely helped me to view teaching and learning from a different and very positive perspective. Therefore, I alternatively used OBE and SCL in my own classed and I found from students feedback the OBE-SCL approach interactive and students welcomed it.
Definitely, as a dean of faculty I will truly support OBE and SCL in my faculty. First, I will start from myself and already I started and then motivate other lecturers to conduct OBE-SCL approach in their classes. I also conduct holding workshops at faculty and university level. Moreover, our faculty created criteria to evaluated lecturer’s performances at faculty level and implementation of OBE-SCL is the huge part of criteria.
For other lecturer’s motivations we need show our OBE-SCL implementation advantages that we got in recent time. We need to general seminars, workshop about OBE-SCL awareness to all lecturers. Ministry of Higher Education will make some policies of OBE-SCL for examples, those lecturers who are not willing to join workshop and implanting OBE-SCL in their class their academic promotion will be postpone.
In my opinions, OBE and SCL can be institutionalized if the Ministry of Higher Education truly supports and create the best atmosphere for OBE and SCL implementation through financial and academic support. For examples, creating laboratories, hiring staff and improve infrastructures. Ministry of Higher Education create opportunities for conducting workshops about OBE-SCL and force universities for implantation.