WOU-ISP pact to upgrade qualifications and skills of teachers

WOU aims to meet the nation’s demand for highly-qualified teaching professionals with its offering of education programmes to teachers within the International Schools Partnership (ISP) Malaysia fraternity.

This has been made possible with the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) between WOU and ISP Malaysia, which operates and owns Tenby Educare Sdn Bhd and Tenby Education Sdn Bhd.

Signing in progress.

The teachers of both schools, along with all employees of ISP Malaysia and its affiliated schools, will surely benefit from this collaboration. They can leverage on the partnership to pursue their Post Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) at WOU, and enjoy credit transfers for a faster pathway towards obtaining their Master of Education (MEd).

WOU offers MEd in four specialisations to meet the aspirations of teachers: Teaching of English as a Second Language (TESL), e-Learning, Education Management, and Early Childhood Education (ECE). “We will start to offer MEd in Early Childhood Education from the September 2023 intake,” said Prof Dr Lily Chan, Chief Executive and Vice Chancellor of WOU.

Exchanging of the documents.

The agreement also covers the other bachelor’s degree programmes from WOU’s School of Education, Humanities and Social Studies (SEHS), including the fields of Primary Education, Psychology, English Studies, and Liberal Studies.

ISP has in fact expressed interest in the PGDE and MEd programmes at WOU. “With the Post Graduate Diploma in Education route, teachers will save time and money, as the courses taken can offset the credits needed to graduate with a Master of Education,” Prof Chan added.

She explained, “The PGDE focuses on teaching pedagogy and has a teaching practicum component, while the MEd focuses on theories, principles and research. With these twin qualifications, the teachers from the ISP community would be better qualified and become more in demand.”

Prof Chan welcomes the collaboration.

On its part, ISP Malaysia will commit to offer internship opportunities for WOU students and also recruit suitably qualified WOU graduates, thus expanding the learners’ practical skills and career opportunities.

ISP is a growing global network of international schools, which oversees 62 schools in 17 countries. Nine of those schools are in Malaysia operating under three separate brands – Tenby Schools, Asia Pacific Schools, and Straits International Schools.

“We welcome this collaboration with ISP Malaysia, an esteemed and globally recognised education provider, and appreciate the golden opportunity to offer our accredited programmes to empower their employees,” Prof Chan said.

The MoA will further facilitate collaboration between both parties in curriculum development, research, talks and other academic activities.

Prof Chan and Sallis (centre) pose with their team members.

The agreement was formally signed at a hotel in Kuala Lumpur on 9 May 2023 by Prof Chan and ISP Malaysia Regional Managing Director Iain John Sallis. The witnesses were Assoc Prof Dr Thomas Chow Voon Foo, Dean of WOU’s School of Education, Humanities and Social Sciences, and Azlan Sharom, Director of National Schools, ISP Malaysia.

Sallis lauded WOU for its “flexible and adaptable” approach, and for recognising work-based learning for admission into its programmes.  He believed “flexible learning is the way forward” to produce amazing, qualified teachers for ISP Malaysia and the country.

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