In preparation for the exchange programme, I took COVID-19 vaccine while awaiting the decision of Canadian Immigration Agency. Although I was denied the study visa by Canadian Immigration Agency, but determined to proceed through distance learning. During the exchange, I lived in one of the SSSB buildings in Stockholm, Sweden.
north2north education programmes are known for quality and standard in line with sustainable developmental goals. At preliminary stage, I chose three institutions namely Memorial University of Newfoundland, University of Alaska Anchorage and University of Northern British Columbia respectively which I eventually got admitted into Memorial University of Newfound (MUN), Canada. I have learnt what can be adapted to my educational practices from international and comparative education perspective (ICE). The tuition fees was free by the virtue of exchange agreement with my home university, but an administrative fees of $307.21 plus 2.25% convenience fees and $10 dollars was charged for participating online for the three courses I offered.
The following courses were registered after which I dropped one.
1. ED 6100 - Research Designs and Method/Education
2. ED-6203 - Leadership Theory and Practice
3. ED-6803 - Research in Post-Secondary Education
4. ED-6801 - Foundations’ Post-Second Programmes (DR)
Appraisal and challenges
The international coordinators from both universities along with my Tutors at MUN were supportive to solve challenges I initially encountered during the programme. English language was the means of communication. I benefitted from well equipped MUN library via online. Despite above mentioned, some of the challenges I faced some include the refusal of my study permit (I was the only one that was denied study visa among exchange students from Stockholm University to MUN); poor internet connection that did not allow me participate in the orientation programme with initial navigation challenges on Brightspace website. Furthermore, I encountered inadequate support from fellow course mates in Canada; there was no avenue to socialize.
The study space consisted of international students while most lecturers were Canadian. The methodology of teaching in distance learning were more of ‘’self-study’’ approach compared to what I have experienced in my previous education programmes.
Conclusion and Recommendation
I think there could be educational borrow between the universities which can improve educational practices for sustainable growth; and where possible, partner universities could consider scholars to secure study permit to ease some of the challenges encountered.