Studying for an online Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree offers teachers a unique opportunity to further their knowledge and career, regardless of where they live. Learn how the IB scholarship to the University of the People (UoPeople) is helping address the global shortage of educators worldwide.
When Anthony Abaidoo read he had been awarded the IB’s scholarship to earn his Master of Education (M.Ed.) with the University of the People (UoPeople), he took a deep breath to savour the moment his dream came true. A teacher at the Morgan International Community School in Ghana, Abaidoo is one of 100 educators awarded a fully-funded scholarship to pursue an M.Ed. in Advanced Teaching developed by UoPeople, which is dedicated to increasing access to higher education globally.
The IB and UoPeople collaborated to offer the M.Ed. degree in 2018 to help educators dedicated to their community and IB pedagogy, like Abaidoo, empower students in communities across the world.
Many educators are unable to pursue advanced degrees because they cannot afford to, do not have the time or lack advice and support. These barriers can stifle a teacher’s professional development. At the same time, the global shortage of teachers takes time and resources to overcome. In 2016, UNESCO estimated that the world needed 69 million more teachers to achieve universal education by 2030 and 17 million of those were required in sub-Saharan Africa.
Against that backdrop, the IB scholarship programme aims to take a step in the right direction by supporting the UN’s mission to make quality education more widely available, easier to access and less costly for educators to extend their studies as lifelong learners.
Furthering professional goals
The M.Ed. in Advanced Teaching, developed by UoPeople, offers teachers across the world the chance to advance their careers, no matter what they can afford or where they teach. The M.Ed. is focused on developing globally-minded educators with an in-depth knowledge of curriculum, the IB pedagogy and assessment to support student-directed inquiry, inter-disciplinary learning, inter-cultural competence and critical thinking.
Luciana Gugliada S., an educator at Colegio Williams in Mexico City, says the IB scholarship has made a tangible difference to her work: “Being well-prepared, along with having a passion for education and a genuine concern for students, can lead us to become an inspiration for students to develop fully and challenge them to become the best version of themselves”.
The good news for passionate, dedicated educators keen to seize the opportunity to be the “best version of themselves”—and help their students do the same—is that applications are now open again for scholarship awards.
The growth in online learning
The global pandemic, which at one point affected the education of 1.2 billion students in 186 countries, according to the World Economic Forum, has also spurred many governments and universities to look afresh at distance learning both as a short-term, emergency plan and a long-term strategic solution to the many challenges facing the education sector.
Distance learning has been available since 1965, when the British government launched the Open University. In the next decade, such countries as Canada, Germany, Spain and the U.S. followed suit. In 1985, the Nova Southeastern University in Davie, Florida launched America’s first accredited, online degree. The spread of the Internet has exponentially increased the availability of online learning. Even before the pandemic, Statista estimated that 16.6% of higher education students in America were learning entirely online in 2018.
UoPeople is a non-profit, privately owned distance-learning institution founded by educational entrepreneur Shai Reshef in 2008. It gained national accreditation in 2014 after a grant from the Bill and Melissa Gates Foundation.
Online degrees have become increasingly popular and sought after. In the past decade some of the world’s most prestigious universities—including Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Oxford University and Zhejiang University—have decided to offer online courses.
At first, the principal attraction of studying for a master’s degree online was convenience. Students did not have to uproot themselves to move to a distant campus, found it easier to support themselves financially (in part because the courses themselves did not cost as much) and were better placed to manage the extra demands on their time.
As tools and access to affordable higher education increase, see if they are the right fit for you and apply for the IB’s fully-funded M.Ed. degree scholarship today.
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