6.5 Cross-border learning mobility
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In the Law on the Organisation and Duties of the Ministry of National Education (Milli Eğitim Bakanlığı’nın Teşkilat ve Görevleri Hakkında Kanun), organising and performing services on education and training of the Turkish nationals abroad are listed among the duties of the Ministry.
Two duties of the Head Council of Education and Morality under the Ministry of National Education in the mentioned Law regarding the abroad learning mobility are:
- To follow and assess domestic and abroad education movements,
- To examine the education plans to be taken as basis for teachers and students sent to foreign countries.
Duties of the Higher Education General Directorate in this context are:
- To carry out works and processes of the students that are to be sent abroad for higher education on education fields, qualities to be sought in these students, their numbers, states of scholarship and credit and their education abroad and planning,
- To take necessary measure for employment of the manpower educated abroad in line with their education aim.
Abroad Postgraduate Education Scholarship is an abroad postgraduate education scholarship program carried out by the Ministry of National Education within the scope of the Law on Students to be sent to Foreign Countries no. 1416 (1416 1416 sayılı Ecnebi Memleketlere Gönderilecek Talebe Hakkında Kanun) for the purpose of meeting the need in educated human resources of Turkey. Works and processes of the student sent abroad within the program regarding selection, placement, staring the education, monitoring their education, scholarship and school fee payments, health expenses, travel expenses, exam fees, stationary aid, placement in the relevant institution after the education and monitoring are carried out by the Ministry of National Education.
Since the first years of the Republic, abroad education scholarship has been granted to meet the educated human resources of public institutions and organisations, particularly higher education institutions, aimed at realisation of science and technology transfer needed by Turkey.
In accordance with the Law on Students to be sent to Foreign Countries no. 1416 (1416 1416 sayılı Ecnebi Memleketlere Gönderilecek Talebe Hakkında Kanun) that entered into force in 1929, sending student abroad in exchange for compulsory service was started. While only 120 students were granted scholarship at first, between 1929 and 2005, totally 9689 students were given the opportunity to study with scholarship. With the “Project of 5000 Students in 5 Years” launched in 2006, the program gained momentum and between 2006 and 2015, totally 7673 students were entitled to receive postgraduate education abroad within the program.
The legislation covering the legal basis of the works and processes performed within the LYSY (Abroad Postgraduate Education Scholarship) Program are given below:
a) Decree Law on Organisation and Duties of the Ministry of National Education
b) Law on Amendment of the National Education Basic Law no. 6528 and Some Laws and Decree Laws,
c) Law on Students to be sent to Foreign Countries no. 1416,
d) Bylaw on Turkish Students’ Education in Foreign Countries,
e) Notification regarding the Payments to be done to the Students to be sent Abroad,
f) Guidelines of the Higher Education and Abroad Education General Directorate (YLSY).
For the year 2017, the Higher Education and Abroad Education General Directorate that is the unit that handles cross-border education mobility within the Ministry of National Education is allocated a budges for 573.963.900,00 TL.
The Bylaw on Sending Ministry of Youth and Sports Personnel Abroad for Education (Gençlik ve Spor Bakanlığı Personelinin Yetiştirilmesi Amacıyla Yurt Dışına Gönderilmesi Hakkında Yönetmelik) is the legal instrument enabling the Youth and Sports Ministry which is the main element of the youth work to increase knowledge and experience through internship abroad and do master and doctorate degrees. The aim of this Bylaw is to regulate procedures and principles on selection of the personnel to be sent abroad by the Ministry as to train as intern, increase knowledge or do postgraduate degree (master/doctorate) in foreign institutions or organisations and international private or public education and research institutions on the service and to determine rights and liabilities to which these personnel will be subject during the said programs.
Assessment of the impression of the students that benefit from the Abroad Postgraduate Education Scholarship program are carried out in workshops organised annually after the program. The education institutions in the programs must be in the first 500 (five hundred) in one of the world university ranking by Times Higher Education, Academic Ranking of World Universities (Shanghai), QS World University Rankings-Top Universities and University Ranking by Academic Performance (URAP) in general or field basis in the last 3 (three) years. However, there is no performance criteria or standard system for program’s quality assurance.
The European Union and Foreign Relations General Directorate under the Ministry of National Education is one of the important institutions on the cross-border education mobility. With the scholarships given to Turkey within the framework of bilateral agreements, students and academicians at the higher education level are sent abroad from our country through education institutions of other countries for the purposes of undergraduate, graduate and post graduate educations and language acquisition. Undergraduate programs takes about 3-4 years, graduate programs about 1-2 years, postgraduate program about 2-3 years and language education about 3 months to 1 year, and they vary from country to country. The entirety of the mobility is funded by the countries providing the scholarship. Services of accommodation, travel, scholarship, materials etc. rendered to students differ from country to country, where some countries provide scholarship, some countries met the whole or part of the costs. In order to monitor and assess the mobility, feedback through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is requested. Furthermore, some scholarship providing countries also inform about the placements. Within the context of assessment of quality of the programs, however, requests and complaints conveyed by the students to the Ministry of National Education via e-mail and petitions are submitted to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as to be submitted to the scholarship providing countries. In addition, the European Union and Foreign Relations General Directorate provides guidance to the candidates.
Student mobility realised under Erasmus + Program, however, is carried out by the EU Education and Youth Programs Presidency (National Agency) of the Ministry of European Union.