Education Minister: Belarus is determined to join Bologna Process
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MINSK, 4 March (BelTA) – Belarus is determined to join the Bologna Process, Belarusian Education Minister Mikhail Zhuravkov said during his meeting with a delegation of experts of the Council of Europe to discuss the Belarusian education system, BelTA has learned.
“In our work towards joining the Bologna Process we have come to the point when we need to develop a legal framework. Now we can say with confidence that Belarus has a two-stage system of education with bachelor programs (from three to five years depending on the specialization) and master programs. We have started implementing a system of continuous education taking into consideration the two-stage system of higher education. We have introduced the possibility of getting PhD through thesis defense. Besides, now the PhD defense can be conducted in English. All the Belarusian universities started to run courses in English,” Mikhail Zhuravkov said. International experts note that Belarus is ready to join the Bologna Process. “Of course, Belarus has its specifics as any other state, but in general we comply with the guidelines of the Bologna convention. One of our main goals for the future is to improve the academic mobility and to ensure initial employment of university graduates,” Mikhail Zhuravkov emphasized.
For his part, Head of the Education Department of the Council of Europe Sjur Bergan noted: “When the Bologna Process was launched, the countries had their education processes organized in different ways. Today we have a clear application procedure. Therefore it is easier now for Belarus and other countries to join the process. I do not think that the roadmap for Belarus will be more complicated than for other countries.”
Sjur Bergan also said: “Today is an important day. We feel that Belarus wants to join the European Higher Education Area. We saw your eagerness during our meeting with representatives of the Education Ministry. Yesterday's meetings showed us that Belarusian universities have many competent professors and students. The fact that we have come to Belarus proves that we are seriously considering your application. Otherwise we would not be here. We have come to give some recommendations and hope that the Belarusian ministers will adhere to them.”
Minsk is hosting the international information seminar on the implementation of the European Higher Education Area, its problems and opportunities. The program of the seminar includes a number of bilateral meetings. The results of cooperation between Belarus' education system and the European Higher Education Area were presented to the foreign experts at the Belarusian State University on 3 March.