Internationalization of Library and Information Science Education in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan: Implications in Central Asia

Internationalization of Library and Information Science Education in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan: Implications in Central Asia

Piotr Lapo (Nazarbayev University Library, Kazakhstan), Gadobek Makhmudov (The National Library of Tajikistan, Tajikistan) and Marat Rakhmatullaev (Tashkent University of Information Technologies, Uzbekistan)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-2273-8.ch010


Internationalization of education is of particular importance both for improving the quality of library and information education and for strengthening scientific, cultural, and political development in countries in Central Asia. The discussion in this chapter is divided into two parts: 1) library and information education in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan as part of the Central Asian republics of the former Soviet Union, which specifically provides an overview of the current policies of the higher education internationalization, current state of library development and library education, the challenges and recommendations for improvement; and 2) challenges and opportunities common in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan and a general conclusion internationalization of Library and information science education in these four countries.
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The Policy of Internationalization in Higher Education

The requirements for the educational process are based on the provisions of Tajikistan Law on Education (2013) (DeYoung, Kataeva, & Jonbekova, 2018). The educational process should be organized in such a way that students acquire self-education skills and learn how to effectively use information in their professional activities. Higher education has become a diversified social and organizational activity, and the development of society depends on the success of higher education.

The importance and significance of issues related to the development of professional and pedagogical competence are noted in such legal acts as the Law of the Republic of Tajikistan on Education (2013), On Education in Higher Educational Institutions and Professional Training after Graduation dated 19.05.2009 (Law on Higher and Professional Education (2003, amended in 2009) and some concepts, such as the Concept on Education in the Republic of Tajikistan, the Concept of the Development of Vocational Training in the Republic of Tajikistan, as well as in state standards on general and vocational education. The approaches defined in the documents are aimed at training a specialist who possesses general cultural and professional competencies corresponding modern requirements for training a specialist, economic and cultural development of a society, and participation of a specialist in mastering a universal culture.

The importance of education in the socio-economic development of modern Tajikistan is determined by understanding that the country's future and the well-being of its citizens depend on how effectively the national education system is able to develop their intellectual potential. The National Education Development Strategy of the Republic of Tajikistan for 2020 defines the role of education as a key resource for the socio-economic development of the country and its citizens.

Entering the Bologna process, the introduction of new state educational standards, and the transition to two-level education have led to the need to modernize the library and information educational system. An analysis of the experience of universities in the republic showed that university graduates were often not ready for independent professional activity matching their qualifications. Therefore, the main strategic direction of improving teacher education is to improve the quality of training of future specialists, including ones in the field of library and information activities.

The entry of the Republic of Tajikistan as an independent state into the world community, the signing of international conventions and acts, integration into the global education system and exchange of students and researchers, the international recognition of Tajik diplomas and many other achievements related to training and research, have opened ways to widespread international cooperation of Tajik higher educational institutions with their counterparts in other countries. In the framework of the state regulations on education, quotas for continuing education of Tajikistani citizens at universities abroad are annually allocated. In 2008, “Durakhshandagon (Shining)” (Durakhshandagon, 2009), the scholarship of the President of the Republic of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon, was established for students seeking to study abroad. Thanks to the scholarship, more than 430 students were educated at leading foreign educational institutions.

From 1994 to 2018 more than 30,000 students supported by the state were sent to universities in 30 countries of the world. UNESCO estimates that in 2015 around 13,000 Tajik nationals studied abroad. This represents about 6% of the total tertiary student body in the country (Sabzalieva, 2017).

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