Preparing students for postgraduate study in the west

The present book addresses problems concerning the preparation of Iraqi Kurdish students for international study, with specific attention to the Kurdistan Regional Government’s international study program (Human Capacity Development Program). The study reports the results of 25 qualitative interviews with Iraqi Kurdish students study abroad, 3 interviews with program administrators, and one interview with a former minister of the Mhe. Beginning with an assessment of the overall goals and problems acknowledged in the Kurdish Ministry of Higher Education’s (MHE’s) 2010-11 reports, the study proceeds to evaluate perceptions and recommendations for program improvements. The study found considerable agreement between problems identified in the MHE reports and those mentioned by students. Moreover, a review of literature on international study corroborates problems identified by both MHE reports and the students surveyed. Several recommendations emerge from the study, including a need for more ESL programs; more pre-departure orientations and arrival support; cultural training; and an increased emphasis on honing students’ research methods and critical thinking.
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