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Reforming Mongolia's Higher Education Sector

Video | 24 June 2019

Mongolia is reforming its higher education sector, improving the quality and relevance of the courses on offer in its Universities, which is driving up graduate employment rate.

For Oyunbayar Rentsen, a mechanical engineering student from Ulaanbaatar's Mongolian University of Live Sciences, getting a quality education means that she will be able to pursue her dream of transforming Mongolia into a manufacturing economy.

Transcript

Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia - "My name is Oyunbayar. I was born in the Khishig Undur district of Bulgan province," says Oyunbayar Rentsen, a mechanical engineering student from Ulaanbaatar's Mongolian University of Live Sciences. 

"I am studying to become a mechanical engineer because I would like to manufacture industrial tools and equipment parts here in Mongolia rather than import them from abroad at a very high cost for the country.

"When I was considering where to study, I thought it would be a good idea to look for an internationally accredited program. At the time, accreditation of this program at the University of Life Sciences was imminent, so I decided to enroll."

Accreditation of Oyunbayar’s program was possible thanks to a government project implemented with $20 million of support from the Asian Development Bank.

The training program was brought in line with international standards.

"In June 2018, the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology decided to accredit our mechanical engineering technology program," explains Ganbat Ulziikhutag, who heads the Mechanical Engineering Department at the Mongolian University of Life Sciences.

"This gave us the opportunity to review our training program and align it with employers’ needs and demands."

Mongolia is reforming its higher education sector, improving the quality and relevance of the courses on offer in its Universities.

Accessibility and gender issues are also being addressed.

Under the project, 24 laboratories were established in six state universities, and ten programs were internationally accredited.

210 competitive grants for academics, researchers, and students were awarded, and over 9,000 academic staff received training and distance learning was introduced in 5 remote universities.

"The education sector is changing rapidly and our teaching programs are being reformed with a view to the country’s future needs," explains Amarjargalan Tumurbaatar, Director of Higher Education Policy, Ministry of Education, Culture, Science, and Sports.

"For example, we are introducing standards and methodologies from the so-called 'Conceiving, Designing, Implementing, Operating' engineering educational framework," says Amarjargalan Tumurbaatar, Director of Higher Education Policy, Ministry of Education, Culture, Science, and Sports.

The graduate employment rate rose to 59% in 2016 from 40% in 2010 in part thanks to the project.

For Oyunbayar, getting a quality education means that she will be able to pursue her dream of transforming Mongolia into a manufacturing economy.

"Mechanical engineers work in many sectors and industries, such as mining, agriculture, and transport. I would like to work as an agricultural engineer," says Oyunbayar.

"I will soon become a qualified mechanical engineer who can contribute to my country’s development."