Oman's MoHE reacts to complaints from some scholarship students in Poland

File photo of Warsaw University of Technology

Muscat - 

The Ministry of Higher Education  (MoHE) has refuted allegations from 30 Omani scholarship students currently studying at the Warsaw University of Technology (WuT) in Poland about the quality of courses and the medium in which the classes were taught in. 

In a written response Ahmed bin Mohammed al Azri, the director of external scholarships at MoHE, said that they were currently 'looking seriously into this matter' and were in contact with the students in Poland, academic staff at the university and a ministerial representative based in the country.

A group of students have complained about course languages, the lack of a foundation year to aid in preparing for the degree proper, and requesting to be moved to a different country.

“When it comes to the courses we selected for our students, the official medium of instruction at WuT is English. Also, classrooms usually consist of both Polish and international students. The WuT is a higher education institution with a long-standing tradition in especially Science and Engineering programmes,” he said.

In response to the allegation of the lack of a foundation year at WuT as was initially stated, Azri said that those embarking on the scholarship programme completed an English language course, and were also given an introduction to the Polish language as well.

Offers from WuT for extra classes to assist students in adapting to their courses have also gone unanswered, he added. “None of our students have shown any interest in participating in extra classes in the Sciences designed for those who may need to close any gap between their school background in Mathematics, Physics or Chemistry and the University level Science courses.

“The students first completed an English language programme and learned some basic Polish as well as this is the mother tongue of Polish residents and it is useful for them for use outside the university’s premises. Just like in several other European study destinations, the following year is the first year of a four-year BSc programme.

“The first year of the four-year BSc programme is designed to further improve the students fundamental knowledge about sciences and offer an introduction to other subjects which is one of the reasons why the duration of the BSc programmes at WuT is four years instead of three. For example, during his or her first year, a Civil Engineering student at WuT will take subjects such as Calculus, Algebra, Physics, Chemistry, Building Materials, Mechanics, Geometry, Technical Drawing, Surveying and Information Technology,” he added.

The students relayed their concerns last year complaining about use of the Polish language by teachers in classes, the lack of a foundation year, a shortage of English language reference material, and a lack of action from the authorities in Oman.

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