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Reflections of a Higher Education Leadership and Management Program in Indonesia

Wednesday, February 3, 2016   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Dr. David Stein, The Ohio State University
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David Stein has been participating as a Short Term Technical Assistance Consultant for the USAID project on Higher Education Leadership and Management for Indonesian Universities since May 2014. He has made two trips of approximately three weeks each time, visiting the four partner universities in the Leadership and Management Program. His role is to provide support for alternative delivery of content using electronic technologies.  This is a collaborative project under the direction of the Indiana Alliance. The Alliance is composed of three US universities: The Ohio State University, responsible for the technology/alternative delivery component; The University of Illinois, responsible for the curriculum component; and The Indiana University, responsible for overall coordination of the project and for developing research capabilities among the four Indonesian partners.

The Government of Indonesia has made important strides in higher education: increased enrollment and education attainment; improved percentage of teaching staff with advanced degrees; internationally competitive staff/student ratios; and reinvigorated research capacity and knowledge generation. However, the demand for skilled human resources and new knowledge is accelerating, and Indonesian higher education institutions lack the management and quality needed to meet the demands of national development. USAID’s Higher Education Leadership and Management (HELM) project will provide technical assistance, training, and other support to strengthen capacity in the Indonesian higher education sector to increase effectiveness in the following four core management areas:

  1. General administration and leadership
  2. Financial management
  3. Quality assurance (QA)
  4. Collaboration with external stakeholders

To strengthen graduate-level programs in higher education leadership and management, the project, in partnership with three universities in the Indiana Alliance (IA), and in close collaboration with the Indonesian Directorate General of Higher Education (DIKTI), is developing post-graduate programs designed to develop and strengthen four centers of post-graduate education and research in higher education leadership and management in Indonesia.  These centers will offer master degrees, doctoral degrees, and executive education programs, and will be invigorated through ongoing research programs of faculty and graduate students. The concentration of scientific knowledge on higher education will provide a foundation for development of executive education model programs for developing the capacity of structural leaders. As part of this work, development of alternative and online delivery of teaching and learning is required.


During 2014, the following activities in country were accomplished. These activities were designed to lay the foundation for a sustainable effort in providing online teaching and learning.


Consultation with teaching staff of HELM's partner post-graduate programs on their plans for developing alternative and online delivery of teaching and learning was accomplished by meeting with faculty, program managers, directors of postgraduate programs and graduate students at each of the partner universities. 


An informal assessment of the capabilities of the institutions to deliver distance learning as well as assess the possible technologies that could be used in each location was conducted.


Two participants from each university were recruited to participate in a planned follow-up training in the US on post-graduate teaching and learning.  Meetings were conducted with directors of postgraduate programs who would be attending the follow-up training. Topics included how the training would be structured, particularly at The Ohio State University. Reading materials were supplied on trends in ICT and the meaning of “blend” in blended learning. Online resources were discussed and illustrated that might prepare participants for the opportunities available to better engage in online teaching and learning.


During 2015, the theme of sustainability of online learning directed the activities conducted in the United States and in Indonesia. An online course was delivered to five faculty representing each of the four partner universities; the course focused on the theme to build sustainability for online education using a train-the-trainer model. The online course was delivered to prepare faculty for their role as online trainers. The course was offered from August to November 2015.


In-country activities commenced on 29 November 2015 and ended on 22 December 2015. These activities were specifically related to preparing for online teaching and learning methods. At each of the four centers of post-graduate education in the field of HELM, Dr. David Stein held a two day workshop in Jakarta with the five participants as a group to take the next steps in designing their courses.  Visits were made to partner universities to collaboratively plan workshops for a selected group of five to 10 faculty members at each university who are interested in designing additional online courses. Workshops were jointly conducted by Dr. Stein and a senior lecturer with follow up activities being led by the senior lecturer. Thus, at the end of the in-country visit, each university will have the capability to continue to build online learning. 


In this phase of building capability, joint research and writing projects have been established. In addition, joint research projects are now in process with lecturers at UNY and UT related to distance and online teaching.

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