A Workshop on the Development of the IT Curriculum at Al-Andalus University Faculties

Under the auspices of Prof. Dr. Mohammad Amer Al-Mardini, University President, and as part of the activities of the Basic Sciences Development Program at Al-Andalus University, a workshop was held on Saturday 3-12-2022 in the Scientific Research Committee to develop the IT curriculum in the university faculties.

Prof. Dr. Muhammad Yehia Mualla, Chairman of the Scientific Accreditation Committee, gave a speech in which he welcomed the attendees, stressing the importance of continuing to hold these scientific workshops and expanding them to later include all specialized courses in the university. He also spoke about the importance of IT in our daily life and in the development of society in general.

Then Prof. Dr. Mohammad Amer Al-Mardini, University President, spoke and pointed out the importance of having a bioinformatics course with a specialized orientation according to each faculty, in tandem with a general course as a university requirement with unified course contents, such as computer and informatics. He pointed out that it is not often possible to cover all aspects of informatics and computers through lectures or syllabi, so it is necessary to conduct supportive workshops, such as ones on the use of computers in the pharmaceutical industry, in dental implants, etc. 

Prof. Dr. Ali Ibrahim, University Vice President for Administrative and Students Affairs, pointed out the importance of developing curricula at Al-Andalus University to reach universality, and including operating systems within the IT course contents at the university.

Then Prof. Dr. Hussein Mayhoub Salman, University Vice President for Scientific Affairs and Research, spoke and noted that it is not permissible for the contents of the specialized IT courses to be the same in all faculties, but rather to be directed towards the scientific specialization of each of the six faculties.

Prof. Dr. Radwan Danda, director of the IT Curriculum Development Workshop, renewed his welcome to the attendees and confirmed that the IT course contents are tackled in each faculty according to its scientific specialization. He also explained the concept of informatics, which means information management, circulation, deduction, programming, and presentation.

The instructors of IT courses at the university did their presentations. They were: Prof. Dr. Radwan Danda, Dr. Wassim Bilal, Dr. Hani Hasan, Dr. Tayseer Salman, Dr. Youssef Dalla, Dr. Sahar Al-Ali, and Dr. Rimon Layous. They gave an overview of the ten best international universities in the field, including Harvard University, the University of Glasgow, Herdecke University, and others. They compared their course contents with those of Al-Andalus University, and the similarities ranged between 70-90%, with reference to the absence of the concept of digital transformation in our curriculum. 

At the end of the workshop, there was an extensive discussion about the method of teaching the IT curriculum at Al-Andalus University, and it was pointed out that the faculties in our university grant a certificate specific to the faculty and not a certificate specific to a particular specialization. Yet, that does not prevent us from thinking about opening specialized departments in each faculty which grant a more specialized certificate; for instance, a special department for prosthetics in the Biomedical Engineering Faculty where a certificate can be granted in this particular specialization, and computer and informatics courses are to be at the heart of the curriculum of this department.