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Blog texts in Finnish: Hankkeissa tapahtuu -blogi

Leaders from Tribhuvan University on a benchmarking visit in Finland

The TPP project and the JAMK University of applied sciences were proud to welcome several leaders from the Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, for a one week benchmark visit to Finland in November 2017. The focus of the visit was Open and Distance Learning (ODL).

While exploring the development of educational technology at JAMK and in Finland, the group discussed the challenges of adapting various ideas and solutions to the Nepalese context. Irrespective of the context and society, local development and a sense of responsibility were seen as the way forward in developing ODL. 

Mr. Sinuhe Wallinheimo, the chairman of JAMK’s Board of Directors, a Member of Parliament, met the Vice Chancellor of Tribhuvan University, Professor Tirth Ray Khaniya and the Dean of the Faculty of Education, Krishna Prasad Gautam in Jyväskylä. A common understanding of the importance of education for the development of society was easily reached in their discussions.

At the end of the visit, the delegation spent a day in Helsinki, where they met representatives of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, which funds the HEI ICI programme (Higher Education Institutions Institutional Cooperation Instrument), and had a lunch at Helsinki University. Professor Timo Honkela from the University of Helsinki showed the group around one of the university’s modern learning spaces, Tiedekulma, which gives students a possibility to meet each other and learn together as well as to use modern educational technology. The group was grateful for the presentation and, even in such a modern learning space, discussed the very basic ideas that are at the core of education: building understanding together and respecting each other.

The development of ODL continues in the various campuses of Tribhuvan University in Nepal after the visit. In March 2018, the Finnish project team travels to Nepal and organizes training in seven campuses.






Text: Tuovi Leppänen
Photos: Tuulia Kiilavuori, Tuovi Leppänen, Timo Honkela

The TPP project kick-off seminar was held at Tribhuvan University in October

The kick-off seminar of the Teacher Preparation Project (TPP) Nepal was held during a warm and sunny week in Kathmandu in October 2017. The seminar brought together the leadership of the faculty of education of the Tribhuvan University, representatives from the university’s seven campuses and the Finnish project team.

The seminar strived to build a common understanding of open and distance learning (ODL) and the ways to implement it. It also aimed to identify the learning needs ODL can create. Both technical and pedagogical competencies for planning and implementing ODL programmes were identified as the main learning needs of the personnel whereas guidance and counselling as well as better ICT skills were seen to lower the threshold for students’ participation in ODL programmes.

One of the starting points for creating solutions for ODL in a country such as Nepal is understanding the possibilities offered by the technological infrastructure - both from the university’s and the students’ viewpoints. Technical issues were discussed from several angles in the seminar and despite the challenges, the participants were encouraged in their work by the constantly improving technical resources of Tribhuvan University.

The intense collaboration and enthusiasm of the participants that was seen throughout the week demonstrated a high commitment to ODL. Developing ODL was seen as highly motivating because this mode of studying can improve the possibilities of subject teachers to continue their studies at the same time as they work.

All the project members from Finland attended the kick off seminar. The Finnish project team includes Tuovi Leppänen, Seija Koskela, Tuulia Kiilavuori and Anne Leppänen from the Teacher Education College of the JAMK University of Applied Sciences, and Tauno Tertsunen and Marko Susimetsä from the Teacher Education College of the HAMK University of Applied Sciences.

Collaborating in TPP Nepal


Professor Rajani Rajbhandary, Seija Koskela, Tuulia Kiilavuori, Project Manager Tuovi Leppänen, Tauno Tertsunen, Professor Kul Narsingh Shrestha, project coordinator prof. Shyam K. Maharjan, Marko Susimetsä

The Teacher Preparation Programme (TPP) Nepal got a strong start in August

View in Nepal

The teacher preparation programme TPP Nepal got off to a good start when long-term colleagues from Tribhuvan University, JAMK University of Applied Sciences and HAMK University of Applied sciences gathered around the same table in Kathmandu in August 2017.

The purpose of the TPP project is to develop hybrid learning solutions that make it easier for subject teachers to access training and continue their studies at the same time as they work. Hybrid learning, which combines online and face-to-face learning, is called open and distance learning (ODL) in Nepal. A special focus of the TPP project is on guidance and counselling as well as on the development of teacher education programmes in sciences, mathematics and social studies.

The project continues a successful collaboration between the partners that was established already during the Training of Trainer’s, ToT Nepal project in 2013 – 2015. Ms. Tuovi Leppänen, the project manager of TPP Nepal, says that it was a fulfilling experience to meet the partners and see the results of the previous project in the everyday work of Tribhuvan University. The ODL model has clearly developed and, at the same time, created new learning needs.

Group photo

Tuovi Leppänen was accompanied on the visit to Kathmandu with Dr. Seija Koskela from JAMK University of Applied Sciences and Mr. Tauno Tertsunen from HAMK University of Applied Sciences.

The Finnish experts were welcomed by the Vice Chancellor of Tribhuvan University, Professor Tirth Raj Khania and the Dean of the Faculty of Education, Professor Krishna Prasad Gautam on the first day of the visit. They also had a great pleasure to meet the former Dean of Faculty of Education, Professor Prakas Man Shestra, who has had an important role in ODL development at Tribhuvan University as well as in the long collaboration between the partners.

Text: Seija Koskela and Tuovi Leppänen
Photos: Seija Koskela and Rajani Rajbhandary