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Distance degrees aren't recognised
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naturegirl321



Joined: 04 May 2003
Posts: 8999
Location: home sweet home

PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2004 9:12 am    Post subject: Distance degrees aren't recognised Reply with quote

This was just posted on the teacher training forum



Anyone thinking of applying for teaching positions with tertiary institutions in the United Arab Emirates should be aware that the Ministry of Higher Education does NOT recognize the legitimacy of Masters or Doctorate Degees earned by distance from Australian tertiary institutions.

My wife and I spent thousands of dollars and thousands of hours of study to earn Masters Degrees from the University of Southern Queensland
only to learn that they are not considered legitimate degrees in the United Arab Emirates. Only residental degree programs are condsidered legitimate.

If you are currently studying by distance with an Australian university, you might want to spend your last semester in residence. This might be one way to avoid the disappointment that we are experiencing. Also, it would be nice if the Australian government would take some positive action in this regard.
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Cleopatra



Joined: 28 Jun 2003
Posts: 3657
Location: Tuamago Archipelago

PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2004 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"It would be nice if the Australian gov. could take some action in this regard"

How is the Aussie gov. supposed to influence policies in the UAE?
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james



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 44

PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2004 11:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear Ms. Cleopatra,

The Australian government through the good offices of its Embassy could ask the Ministry of Higher Education to reconsider its policy. Perhaps, the Australian government could refuse to recognize the legitimacy of degrees earned at U.A.E. tertiary institution. Government to government contact is something nations do all the time. That is why there is a need for diplomats.

I am sorry that my desire for the Australian government to contact the proper authorities with the government of the U.A.E. caused you to be so very condescending. Maybe you are just having a bad day.
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Sadebugo



Joined: 10 May 2003
Posts: 518

PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2004 1:28 pm    Post subject: Distance Degrees Reply with quote

It was my understanding that universities did not indicate on the transcript/diploma that the degree was via distance study. Am I wrong? If not, how would the MOHE know that this were the case?
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refazenda



Joined: 08 Mar 2004
Posts: 70
Location: El Salvador, Central America

PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2004 1:46 pm    Post subject: Job in one place; degree earned in another Reply with quote

That's how they usually know. If you're in Brazil, for example, you are not likely to commute to Australia for classes.

There probably is a diplomatic solution to this problem, unless Australian distance degrees are not up to par. We've had a problem with this here in the US. Some fully credentialled universities offer distance programs; others are fly-by-night corporations. I know one person who earned one of the latter. All he had to do was write a couple of essays, fill out some forms about life experience (which was hardly well-rounded enough to equal a degree, IMHO) and of course, pay the fees, and he was awarded a nice-looking BA degree (which was, ironically, accepted by a federal agency!).
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abudhabi



Joined: 02 Jul 2003
Posts: 34

PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2004 2:06 pm    Post subject: NOT the Ministry of Higher Education, not just Australian Reply with quote

As I understand it, it is the Ministry of Education and NOT the Ministry of Higher Education that doesn't recognise distance MA's. And the Min of Education doesn't discriminate between Australian, British or American degrees - or any other, except for their own, apparently. They won't recognise any distance ed MA's be they from the Uni of Southern Queensland or Oxford. Crying or Very sad

The Min of Ed will in fact contact your uni to check up on the mode you did it in - they don't just look at the degree or transcript, which indeed doesn't mention the mode of study.

But don't despair NarureGirl321, the institutions that are under the Min of Higher Ed should still look at your degree with interest Smile. That doesn't include the MLI as they are under the Min of Education.

I agree with NatureGirl321 and James - there is a case for political lobbying to overturn this anomaly.
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well-travelled



Joined: 19 Mar 2003
Posts: 97

PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2004 5:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just to substantiate what abudhabi said above - there are two ministries involved here - namely The Ministry of Education & The Ministry of Higher Education.

UAE University & HCT come under the auspices of The Ministry of Higher Education who, at the moment anyway, rightly recognise that an MA degree is an MA degree, whether it's been done on site or by distance.

MLI comes under the auspices of The Ministry of Education, who do not recognise distance MAs - although if the MLI want you, they will employ you on BA status for 1,000 dirhams less a month.

The situation is, of course, absurd - and I think the guys at MLI appreciate that, but are not, at present, in a situation to do much about it.

My own feeling, to echo a posting somehere else in the Middle East section of Dave's (perhaps it was Shebab's?), is that a distance MA in APPLIED LINGUISTICS/TESOL - with the stress on APPLIED - is arguably more valid than an on-site MA, as you can actually APPLY what you're learning to your teaching situation etc.....

But what do I know...?

well-travelled
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Cleopatra



Joined: 28 Jun 2003
Posts: 3657
Location: Tuamago Archipelago

PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2004 7:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for your concern, but I am not having a bad day at all.

I was asking a simple question - I am sorry if you perceived it as being condescending. That was not my intention.

However, I am quite sure that the UAE authorities would consider it condescending for a foreign country to ask them to amend their policies. I doubt if Australia - or any other country - would change their employment procedures at the behest of another nation. I'm not saying I agree with the UAE policy on distance degrees, because I don't, but it is not for Austrailia or any other country to intervene in such a matter.
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12756
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2004 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the "authorities" in the UAE are anything like those in Saudi Arabia, the best way to ensure that they wouldn't change their misguided policies would be for another government - especially, a "non-Islamic one" - to request that.
Regards,
John
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holymoly



Joined: 24 Mar 2004
Posts: 8
Location: UAE

PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2004 4:42 am    Post subject: Calling all Australian (USQ) degree holders! Reply with quote

This is the person/office you should be lobbying. I've already e mailed her and told her the situation. More e mails sent to her by others will help her better realize the need for some intervention/representation on our behalf.

Lea Sublett
Consul - Education, Science and Training
Australian Education International (Middle East)
Australian Consulate General
Level 1, Emarat Atrium
Sheikh Zayed Road
PO Box 58010
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Tel - 971 4 315 9510
Fax - 971 4 321 2677
Email - lea.sublett@austrade.gov.au
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Stephen Jones



Joined: 21 Feb 2003
Posts: 4124

PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2004 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the Emirates authorities are discriminationg against Australian distnace degrees in contrast to their treatment of distance degrees from other universities, I can see a case for the Australian authorities to make representations. If they are not accepting distance degrees in general I really can't see how it is any of their business.
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nowasta



Joined: 16 Mar 2003
Posts: 74
Location: uranus

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 6:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The UAE Ministry of Education and Ministry of Higher Education do not accept any distance degrees from any country. The Ministry of Ed. is responsible for evaluating high school/secondary degrees and the Ministry of Higher Ed. is responsible for university/post-secondary degrees. Currently k-12 teachers, MLI staff and other government employees must do this but it has been passed into law and everyone in the Emirates will probably have to do this within the next few years. I have heard, for instance, that Zayed University and HCT may be next. It is already causing problems for many teachers and when it is implemented country-wide it will be an absolute nightmare. It means that no foreign workers with any type of distance degree will be able to work in the UAE.
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cornishmaid



Joined: 02 Feb 2003
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 7:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does this mean that distance degrees which included a direct contact phase, on-site module or residency period will also not be recognised? Naturegirl321 implied in his/her original post that spending some time in residence might be a way around the problem. Does anyone have any info on that?
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Cleopatra



Joined: 28 Jun 2003
Posts: 3657
Location: Tuamago Archipelago

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Stephen - I hardly see how intervention from the Australian embassy (even assuming they are interested in the woes of EFL teachers) would be appropriate here. It is not a bilateral situation.
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Pat



Joined: 05 Mar 2003
Posts: 20

PostPosted: Sat Mar 27, 2004 3:01 am    Post subject: Distance Degrees and the HCT Reply with quote

I work at the HCT and have been informed that the HCT does recognize legitimate online Master's Degrees. When in doubt of legitimacy, the issuing university is researched.

If you are applying to the HCT, I suggest you ask them if the university from which you earned your online MA is accredited.
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