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Leading educators from around the world gather at AUS symposium to promote interdisciplinary learning
American University of Sharjah (AUS) recently hosted the Education Bridging Disciplines Symposium, where over 70 leading educators and researchers from around the world gathered to share insights on promoting interdisciplinary approaches to teaching and learning.
In his opening speech, Dr. Mahmoud Anabtawi, Dean of the AUS College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), emphasized the significance of interdisciplinary education in shaping well-rounded individuals.
"Education is not just about acquiring knowledge in a single field, but rather it should aim to provide a holistic learning experience that involves different areas of study. As educators, we have a responsibility to cultivate interdisciplinary education and create opportunities for our students to broaden their perspectives and develop a versatile skill set," Dr. Anabtawi said.
The symposium provided a platform for educators and researchers to share insights and collaborate on innovative pedagogical strategies aimed at developing students’ critical thinking skills, curiosity and engagement. Attendees learned about a variety of approaches to curriculum integration and pedagogy.
Dr. Norita Ahmad, Director of the AUS Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning (CITL), said: “CITL is very proud to collaborate with Dr. Nidhal Guessoum, the Sheikha Nama Majid Al Qassimi Endowed Chair in Education Across Disciplines, in hosting this symposium. By bringing together experts from diverse fields, attendees can learn about innovative approaches to curriculum integration and pedagogical strategies aimed at developing students' critical thinking skills, curiosity and engagement.”
Distinguished speakers from the United States, the United Kingdom, Pakistan, Qatar, Egypt and the UAE provided valuable insights to promote interdisciplinary education and create knowledge from diverse perspectives, which are core values of the Sheikha Nama Majid Al Qassimi Endowed Chair in Education Across Disciplines at AUS.
During her keynote address, Dr. Gillian Roehrig, a renowned professor of STEM Education from the University of Minnesota, emphasized the significance of interdisciplinary approaches to teaching and learning. Her speech delved into innovative pedagogical strategies that cultivate critical thinking skills, curiosity and engagement among students.
Other renowned experts presenting at the symposium were Dr. Heba El-Deghaidy, Chair of the Department of Educational Studies and Professor of Curriculum and Science Education at the American University in Cairo, Egypt; Dr. Lee Hazeldine, Senior Lecturer in Education and a Research Fellow for the Epistemic Insight initiative at Canterbury Christ Church University, UK; Dr. Tasneem Anwar, Assistant Professor of Science (STEM) Education at the Aga Khan University’s Institute for Educational Development, Karachi, Pakistan. Dr. Nasser Mansour, a leading STEM educator in the College of Education at Qatar University; Dr. Athar Osama, the Executive Director of World Science Collaborative Limited; and Dr. Sami Bachir Mejri, Professor in Education and Manager of Pedagogical Enhancements at Khalifa University.
“As specialists from around the world told us today, a paradigm shift is currently taking place in education, promoting inter- and trans-disciplinarity, and it is important that AUS and the UAE be part of that global discussion,” said Dr. Guessoum, who is also a Professor of Physics at AUS.
He expressed his delight with the significant participation of the Ministry of Education and numerous public and private schools which confirms that the UAE education community is eager to be at the forefront of any important transformations in the field.
The Education Bridging Disciplines Symposium and the Sheikha Nama Majid Al Qassimi Endowed Chair in Education Across Disciplines in the AUS College of Arts and Sciences share a common goal of promoting interdisciplinary education and paying tribute to the legacy of education in the UAE. Both initiatives aim to bridge the gap between different academic areas and encourage the creation of knowledge from diverse perspectives. To know more, please click here.