Tashmin, a Zairi Awardee in the centre with two dignitaries on two sides posing for a picture

Professor Tashmin Khamis, Vice Provost (Quality, Teaching and Learning), receives the Zairi International Award for AKU's teaching and learning programme.

We are delighted to announce that IIS faculty will now have access to the Aga Khan University (AKU) Continuous Professional Development (CPD) scheme accredited by Advanced HE. The scheme is part of AKU’s globally renowned Network of Teaching and Learning, which secured AKU the Zairi International Award for Excellence in Disruptive Education in March. 

IIS teaching faculty—across our graduate and Ismaili community courses—will now be able to access the whole suite of support offered by the scheme and apply for Fellowship or Associated Fellowship via the CPD route. This will give them the opportunity to engage in reflective and scholarly teaching practice and gain international recognition for their roles as teachers or teaching support staff. 

The scheme, officially titled TEACH (Teaching Enhancement Accredited Certification of the Higher Education Academy), provides access to a digital bootcamp, EdTech lounges, teaching webinars and three short courses: the Teaching and Learning Enhancement Workshop, Rethinking Teaching Workshop and Online Teaching in Higher Education. Faculty members can use these for CPD and, once a course has been completed, they will be able to proceed with an application for Fellowship status if needed.  

In March the AKU won the inaugural Award of Excellence for Disruptive Education of the Zairi International Award in Higher Education 2022 on the basis of its Network of Teaching and Learning, which supports excellence in academic programmes. The award recognises innovative higher education institutions that stand out in their approach to shaping and re-imagining the future of higher education to meet the challenges of the future.  

According to Professor Tashmin Khamis, who heads the award-winning network and is also an IIS governor:

We know the amount an institution invests in the education development of faculty, the greater the impact on the quality of the student outcome. So the significance of this for IIS is that, by enabling more faculty to access CPD, you are actually guaranteeing a better learning experience for your students.

IIS Fellows will also become assessors and mentors, who help to administer the CPD scheme. For this reason, Professor Khamis sees the move as “a win win” for both institutions.  

“It's not just AKU helping IIS out. I see this as IIS also helping AKU, because it grows our pool of assessors and mentors to run the scheme.” 

“When you're undertaking CPD or applying for Fellowship, you have to talk about how your practice is informed by research and how you are involving yourself in the scholarship of teaching and learning,” Professor Khamis adds. So membership of the scheme will only strengthen the IIS’s work in understanding and enacting “teaching as a discipline that is evidence-based and research-led like any other discipline”. 

Dr Laila Halani, Head of Graduate Studies at the IIS, is delighted that our faculty can join the scheme and said:

At the IIS, we subscribe to a Connected Curriculum approach, where faculty engaged in cutting-edge research are also involved in disseminating the findings of their research in the classroom, thereby ensuring an organic link between research and teaching. Just as ongoing research ensures grounding in their discipline, ongoing CPD, with the TEACH scheme, will enable our faculty to benefit from developments in the field of education, and keep their practice current and dynamic. 

Ian Hall, Head of Membership (International) at Advance HE said:

It is great to see AKU opening up its accredited programme to staff from IIS. This will provide IIS staff with access to a programme that has been accredited against the Professional Standards Framework for Teaching and Supporting Learning, and for successful IIS staff to join a global community of over 150,000 Fellows in more than 100 countries recognised for their support of learning and teaching in higher education. It’s also very pleasing to see the institutions collaborating on mentoring and assessment – to exchange practice across the institutions - which we’re delighted to have approved and support.

Learn more about TEACH