19.10.2015 - UNESCO Office in Dakar

Harmonization of training opportunities for the member universities of the REESAO

From 19 to 23 October 2015, the Regional office of UNESCO in Dakar organized a workshop to support the harmonization of training opportunities regarding the License-Master-Doctorate (LMD) system in the member universities of the Network for Excellence in Higher Education in West Africa (REESAO).

Systems face many challenges

In the last few decades, higher education in West Africa is marked by an expansion and a diversification of education. This expansion generates many problems such as financial insufficiency imposed by the economic crisis, the unemployment of graduates, and the low efficiency of higher education productions and services. These issues have prompted a search for answers in the West Africa Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA), and have posed the difficulty of change and the transformation of governance.

The REESAO, an innovative approach to partnership

The Support Plan for Higher Education (PAES) implemented by UEMOA countries aims to improve higher education systems, and to support mobility and integration throughout the region via the implementation of the License-Master-Doctorate (LMD) system. As a result in 2005, the UEMOA universities adopted a new approach that developed partnerships among members through the creation of the Network for Excellence in Higher Education in West Africa (REESAO).

A need for the harmonization of curricula

Unfortunately, even if the majority of the region adopted the LMD system, the harmonization of curricula remains incomplete. In response to this challenge, the REESAO symposium held in Niamey in February 2015 featured the Conference of Rectors, Presidents and Managing Directors (CRPDG), which included in its priority action plan the execution of harmonization training opportunities. In this context, UNESCO reaffirmed its commitment to West Africa universities and the importance of regional and international organization support regarding the harmonization process.

The workshop was an important milestone in the future of higher education in West Africa, as more than ever it is necessary to build a common regional vision based on higher education curricula. It was attended by LMD domain managers, leaders in curricula design from the seven UEMOA countries, representatives from the African and Malgasy Council for Higher Education (CAMSES), the national Authority of Quality assurance in the higher education in Senegal (ANAQ-SUP), and the regional Office of the university Agency of the Francophonie (AUF) in Dakar.




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