UNIVERSITY of Malaya (UM) held a signing ceremony of a dual PhD programme agreement between itself and University of Nottingham. The agreement enables candidates pursuing PhD under this programme to be awarded Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) from UM and University of Nottingham upon graduation.
The agreement was signed by UM vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mohd Amin Jalaludin and University of Nottingham pro vice-chancellor Prof Christine Ennew. It was witnessed by Institute of Graduate Studies (IPS) dean Prof Datin Dr Norhanom Abdul Wahab and University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus Research and Knowledge Transfer vice provost Prof Graham Kendall.
Talks to initiate this dual PhD programme began in 2011 when Prof Ennew visited UM and after several meetings with representatives from Nottingham, the Faculty of Medicine, UM, took up the proposal and identified potential candidates. Under the programme, candidates will register at both institutions and spend at least 18 months at University of Nottingham and at least one year at UM.
“I am delighted that we are able to offer a dual PhD with Universiti Malaya. This important initiative provides students with the opportunity to study in a genuinely international environment and for our institutions, it provides an opportunity to extend existing research collaborations and develop new ones,” said Prof Ennew.
The candidates will pay pro-rated tuition fees for the time spent at each institution and are supervised by co-supervisors appointed by each institution.
The Dual PhD Programme Agreement with the University of Nottingham was presented and approved at the UM Senate on Oct 24 last year. Datuk Dr Mohd Amin said that programmes such as the dual PhD benefited both institutions as the programme has produced better cooperation in the transfer of knowledge and joint publication.
He said, “The student and supervisors from both institutions act as the conduit for collaborative projects that go beyond the duration of the programme. In essence, the collaborative project is a winwin situation because both universities will have a long-term collaborative relationship that keeps growing even after the students graduated.
“UM is also very pleased to have this agreement with University of Nottingham, a renowned institution ranked among the top 100 universities in the world. I hope the candidates selected from this programme can reap the benefits of studying under both UM and University of Nottingham.”
According to Prof Dr Norhanom, UM has been engaging with internationally renowned institutions for dual PhD programmes since 2009, starting with the University of Sydney and followed by the Liverpool John Moores University.
As of this year, five candidates successfully completed the programme where two candidates graduated last year while the other three are expected to graduate this year.
She added that programmes are tailor-made according to the requirements of each institution, which benefited not only the institutions but also the candidates. For Malaysians, the candidates spend less money through this pro- gramme as compared to studying full-time at the partner institution.
To assist the candidates further on financial matters, IPS initiated the Dual PhD Fund that can support candidates who are qualified for the assistance. “I was involved in a previous version of this scheme, where I was fortunate enough to supervise a number of PhD students from Malaysia. It was that programme that enabled me to visit Malaysia and eventually work here. This revised scheme offers even more opportunities and working with the University of Malaya provides students with the opportunity to work with two world-class institutions, which should lead to a broad variety of exciting research programmes,” said Prof Kendall.
For details, look out for the advertisement in this StarSpecial.
Prof Ennew and Prof Dr Awang Bulgiba Awang Mahmud sealing the deal. Also seen are Prof Kendall (extreme left) and Prof Datin Dr Norhanom (extreme right).