German Academic Exchange Service Sponsors Blended Learning Degree Program in Islamic Studies with Almost One Million Euros

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Funding for Intellectual Encounters of the Islamicate World through the end of 2019

No 120/2018 from May 28, 2018

The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) is supporting an Islamic studies degree program combining classroom teaching and e-learning with almost one million euros through the end of December 2019. The blended learning master’s program "Intellectual Encounters of the Islamicate World" is taught at the Institute of Islamic Studies at Freie Universität Berlin. The grant of roughly 955,000 euros was approved following a successful external review, which found that the degree program provides excellent teaching, with special expertise for teaching in politically fragile contexts, and an optimal digital infrastructure. The grant money will flow into the personnel and technological infrastructure as well as the scholarship program.

The one-year master’s degree program in Intellectual Encounters of the Islamicate World was set up at Freie Universität Berlin in October 2013. It deals with the history of ideas in the medieval world of Islam. The courses focus in particular on the intensive exchange of knowledge between the three monotheistic religions Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. The evaluation commissioned by the DAAD confirmed the excellence of the academic degree program. In particular, the reviewers praised the didactic and technological design of the blended learning program.

The majority of the students in the degree program come from Israel and the Palestinian territories. In addition, some are from other countries including Egypt, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Indonesia, Germany, or the United States.

The classes are taught by lecturers who do research and teach at universities, research institutions, and museums around the world. Among them are scholars from Freie Universität Berlin and various universities in Israel, the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Germany. In addition, experts working at the National Library in Israel, the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science and the Museum for Islamic Art, both in Berlin, the Institute of Ismaili Studies in London, and the Spanish National Council for the Humanities in Madrid are also involved. In addition to the synchronized online seminars, there are three in-class sessions: an introductory week in Córdoba, Spain, and two two-week colloquia in Berlin. The language of instruction is English. Since the degree program began in 2013, it has been funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) with funding from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development.


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