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Wednesday, February 11th, 2004

Issue 4.05 February 11, 2004

LET’S GO CANADA

International Educators Training Program

ABROAD PERSPECTIVE

Study Now Pay Later in the Philippines

OVER THE COUNTER

New TOEFL Details

GLOBE TIPPING

International Airport Tips – Pakistan

LET’S GO CANADA – International Educators Training Program

The 2004 International Educators Training Program (IETP), to be held June 13-16 at Queen’s University, allows participants to learn and develop practical skills pertinent to their profession. According to Coordinator Alison Cummings, the 48 international educators who took part in last year’s Program learned skills that were immediately applicable. The strength of IETP lies in its activity-based learning: group projects, case studies and problem solving can be expected in the sessions.

The training sessions are not only aimed at those in student services, but are also ideal for those in administrative and admissions roles. Cummings recommends the IETP I course for those new to the profession, the IETP II & IETP III courses (full names and descriptions available on the web) for more experienced administrators, while the Foundations & Skills for Intercultural Communication course is also “appropriate for those who deal with an institution’s international student applications.” With “more courses aimed at a far greater range of international educators,” Cummings hopes to double the number of participants this year.

For more information, or to register, visit:
http://www.queensu.ca/quic/ietp

ABROAD PERSPECTIVE – Study Now Pay Later in the Philippines

While some in the Philippines have been receptive to President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s announcement of an interest-free emergency loan program for university students, the reaction of others borders on suspicion and skepticism. One student in Manila (who wished to remain anonymous) said “Everyone knows she’s running [for election] again, so she does all kinds of political gimmicks to make herself palatable to the youth,” while another believed “only those who know people from CHED [Commission on Higher Education] may benefit from this program.”

Students in their final three years of study would qualify for the “Students’ Assistance Fund for Education for a Strong Republic.” Students would be able to borrow up to 8000 pesos (about $188 CAD) a semester and will begin repaying the loan two years after graduation. The funds are intended to cover various expenses, however this may not be enough for some students. According to The International Comparative Higher Education Finance and Accessibility Project (ICHEFAP), tuition alone at public universities can cost nearly 13,000 pesos per year.

http://archives.pia.gov.ph/?m=12&sec=reader&rp=1&fi=p040206.htm&no=4&date=02/06/2004,” Philippines Information Agency, February 6, 2004

OVER THE COUNTER – New TOEFL Details

Integrated tasks will be a feature in the new Test of English as a Foreign Language, set to begin in September 2005. As Teresa Axe of Educational Testing Service (ETS) explains, “in some tasks a test taker will be asked to read a passage and listen to a lecture and then speak or write in response.” ETS feels that this new format will be an “excellent indicator of an individual’s ability to use English as well as to understand it.”

According to a recent report by Shenzhen Daily, the TOEFL examinations experienced drastic drops in the number of Chinese participants. The article claimed that 10,000 students sat the exam in Beijing, compared to 30,000 from last year. Axe disagrees, saying, “Although volumes are down slightly, they are not down to the degree this article indicates.”

No dates have been set yet for the new test. For more information, visit:
http://www.ets.org/toefl

Source: “http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2004-02/04/content_1298252.htm,” Shenzhen Daily, February 4, 2004 (in English)

GLOBE TIPPING – International Airport Tips – Pakistan

Without doubt, Pakistan has the finest airports in the Indian sub-continent (then again, given the sad state of airports in India, it is not the compliment it could be). Karachi’s Quaid- e-Azam and now Lahore’s new Allama Iqbal are the only true world-class international airports in South Asia. The departure lounges are spacious and comfortable, and provide computer terminals with free Internet access. There are duty-free shops with plenty of goods (although alcohol is not permitted).

Upon arrival, immigration lines work very smoothly in Karachi and Lahore and luggage belts are efficient. Both airports are about 30 to 40 minute drives from their respective city centres. There are no special airport taxes. Airport security regularly scans all bags coming in and out of the airport for all flights. Keep your baggage tags as they are often checked upon your exit.

Please direct all questions and comments to editor@higher-edge.com
www.higher-edge.com/oov.htm

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