UHS, Sheffield Varsity launch training of medical teachers

LAHORE:The University of Health Sciences (UHS), in collaboration with the University of Sheffield, UK, has launched a training programme for the medical teachers so that future doctors are prepared to bring knowledge and skills to solve problems and make timely decisions.

The inaugural ceremony of the programme was held here at the UHS on Friday. British Council’s Director Education Dr Nishat Riaz, UHS VC Prof Javed Akram, Pro-VC Prof Maroof Aziz, Director Medical Education Lt-Col (retd) Dr Khalid Rahim and Prof Farkhanda Ghafoor attended the ceremony. University of Sheffield’s Head of Medical Education Prof Michelle Marshall, Dr Benjamin Jackson, and Dr Amir Burney attended virtually.

The programme consisting of six workshops of a 3-day duration each will be funded by the British Council under its ‘Going Global Partnerships’ grant supporting partnerships between universities, colleges, education policymakers, civil society organisations, and industry partners in the UK and around the world.

The workshops will be organised by the UHS Medical Education Department. This specific grant is for developing skills in development in science, technology, engineering, and math, collectively termed as STEM Education Initiative.

Two of the six workshops will be held in Lahore and one each in Gujranwala, Faisalabad, Multan, and Mirpur, Azad Kashmir, in which medical teachers will be trained in the latest teaching techniques of transformational, problem-based, and blended learning.

Under the programme, 150 nominated teachers from different medical and dental colleges of Punjab and Azad Jammu and Kashmir will participate in the workshops who will be trained as the master trainers. No fee will be charged from any participant. Workshop facilitators will include British and Pakistani experts. Almost half of the participants and facilitators of the workshops would be female.

In her address, Dr Nishat Riaz thanked the UHS authorities for involving the British Council in the noble cause of teaching the teachers.

She said that if we wanted a nation where our future leaders, professionals, and workers could understand and solve some of the complex challenges of today and tomorrow, and meet the demands of the dynamic and evolving workforce, building students’ skills, content knowledge, and literacy was essential.

Prof Javed Akram said that the British Council had been instrumental in promoting education in Pakistan. He added that COVID-19 hit the economies hard all around the world, which had made it all the more necessary to pool, the available resources.

Prof Michelle Marshall said that it was an honour to work with Pakistani institutions and the cooperation in this regard would be further strengthened. Dr Benjamin Jackson highlighted that new challenges in the health sector had created new challenges in the field of education.

Dr Asad Zaheer said that with the INSPIRE grant of the British Council, the university started a certificate programme in medical teaching back in 2010 which was still running successfully. Director Medical Education Dr Khalid Rahim Khan said that under this programme, 150 master trainers would be trained who would change the old mindset regarding medical education.