Scholarship to Visit Shanghai Open University

Last year, Colum Foley from the NIDL was awarded a scholarship by the Shanghai Open University to visit as part of an international delegation. He took up this scholarship just before Christmas in joining ten other people from a variety of online/distance learning institutions around the world on a study tour. The aim was to spend two weeks at the Shanghai Open University discussing various aspects of online/distance learning. Other scholarship recipients making up the delegation included:


• Humaira Jamshed from the Virtual Institute of Pakistan

• Muhammad Ajmal Chaudhry from Allama Iqbal Open University, Pakistan

• Lina Gurung from Kathmandu University, Nepal

• Saumya Pandey from Indira Gandhi National Open University, India

• Aniban Ghosh from Netaji Subhas Open University, Kolkata, India

• Imre Mátyás from University of Miskolc, Hungary

• Zlatko Kovacic from the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand, New Zealand

• Yasir Riady from Universitas Terbuka, Indonesia

• Irsanti Widuri Asih from Universitas Terbuka, Indonesia


The delegation had the opportunity to hear how the Shanghai Open University supported a very large number of online/distance students and then shared their own country experiences. As Colum wrote in his report on the experience, “The participants were a lively, witty, challenging and entertaining group of individuals, all with an interesting story to tell with a wide and varied experience of distance learning. At the end I think we have far more in common than what separates us”. We would like to particularly thank the Shanghai Open University for supporting this invaluable experience and look forward to further visits in future years.