The First Session of the Committee of the Asia-Pacific Regional Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications in Higher Education in conjunction with the 15th session of the Committee of the 1983 Convention and the Asia-Pacific Regional Workshop held from 18-19 October 2018, in Seoul, Korea.
It was organized by UNESCO Asia-Pacific Regional Bureau, Korea Ministry of Education, Korean Council for University Education(KCUE) and Korean National Commission for UNESCO with the support of Korean Fund in Trust. The representatives of State and Non-State Parties to the Regional Conventions and distinguished guests from more than 40 countries across the world took part in the event.
On 17 October, all participants were invited to ‘Welcome Reception’ on the evening. After ‘Welcoming Remarks’ delivered by Ms. Jeong-Ja Kang, participants toasted for the success of the event. In addition, participants had buffet and took pictures in the photo zone, which offered photo printing service, pickets, panels, and banner for this memorable meeting.
During the First session of the Committee of the 2011 Convention, State Parties discussed the implementation of the Convention, including the establishment of a network of national information centres (NICs) that will support information sharing related to academic recognition and mobility. In addition, delegates explored the Global Convention on the Recognition of Higher Education Qualifications and other regional conventions, especially the Lisbon Convention concerning the European Region.
Mr. Libing Wang, Chief of Section for Educational and Skills Development of UNESCO Asia-Pacific Regional Bureau for Education, gave a presentation on implications of transitioning from the 1983 Bangkok Convention to the 2011 Tokyo Convention. State Parties - Australia, China, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Holy See - shared national implementation plans to the Tokyo Convention. Mr. Peter J. Wells, Chief of Higher Education Section of UNESCO, gave a presentation on the Global Convention and its relationship with Regional Conventions. The participants from Japan, China, Italy, Norway introduced their experience in National Information Centres (NICs) that will support information sharing related to academic recognition and mobility. Eventually, Draft report of the First session of the Committee of the 2011 Convention was finalized with a number of modifications.
Subsequently, the 15th session of the Committee of the 1983 Convention held to review readiness related to ratification of the Tokyo Convention. Moreover, participants were invited to a Regional Workshop to build awareness and capacity for policy coherence in quality assurance, qualification frameworks and recognition of qualifications to facilitate cross-border mobility.
Ms. Jihye Hwang, Programme Specialist of UNESCO Asia-Pacific Regional Bureau for Education, summarized differences between Bangkok Convention and Tokyo Convention and mentioned State and Non-State Parties to the Regional Conventions. Above all things, she highlighted two things. One is “greater transparency” based on National Information Centres (NICs) with regard to criteria and procedure. The other is “substantial difference” that exist between countries and institutions. After long discussion, participants made Draft report of the 15th session of the Committee of the 1983 Convention.
During Asia-Pacific Regional Workshop, quality tools to facilitate mobility and recognition in Asia-pacific was discussed. Mr. Jang wan Ko, Associate Professor of Department of Education of Sungkyunkwan University, made a presentation on credit recognition in Asia-pacific. He compared credit recognition systems in Asia-Pacific region. At last, Mr. Libing Wang suggested way forward and “Closing Remarks” were delivered by Ms. Jeong-Ja Kang and Mr. Shigeru Aoyagi. Ms. Jeong-Ja thanked all the participants for three days and said that all participants contribute to make a remarkable achievement and could proud of presence on the event.
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