Albania

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For academic year 1998–99, CEP Albania supported three Visiting Faculty Fellows and three Eastern Scholars. These Fellows teach courses in law, sociology, history, and cultural studies.

CEP Albania was a driving force in restructuring the Foreign Cultures curriculum at Aleksandėr Xhuvani University, where over three years, the number of courses in English, American and German culture, history and literature has tripled. As a result, the university now offers programs in German Cultural Studies and in Anglo American Cultural Studies, which it plans to convert into diploma courses.

At Aleksandėr Xhuvani University, Visiting Faculty Fellows train young assistant lecturers in teaching methods and curriculum planning. Many of these assistant lecturers, often former CEP students, now develop their own courses. Together with the Albanian Educational Development Project of the Open Society Foundation, CEP Fellows have been instrumental in efforts to provide Internet access for students. Visiting Faculty Fellow Bülent Bilmez organized a soccer team, the first regular extracurricular activity offered at the school, while Visiting Faculty Fellow Wolfgang Lenz set up a summer school program. In addition, CEP Albania is the only organization giving students at Aleksandėr Xhuvani University opportunity to attend academic events abroad.

“Before CEP it was unheard of that students from this university continued their education abroad. Now it is fairly common.”
a CEP Student
at Aleksandėr Xhuvani University

Country Director Frank Dalton has been working with the Secondary Schools Albanian Language Department on a program of essay writing in Tirana’s middle schools. He also worked with the Albanian Human Rights Group on a position paper for the Albanian Draft Constitution, adopted in November 1998. Frank participated on the committee to draft examinations for Albanian judges, required for re certification of Albanian lower court judges.

Local Faculty Fellows have also been busy. In March 1999, Juliana Latifi completed a book on Albanian inheritance law. Eastern Scholar Bledar Islami presented papers at human rights conferences. His colleague at the University of Tirana, Eva Hyskaj, worked on a distance learning project. Her effort is a step toward changing the current correspondence studies system, where students get diplomas after four years of studying without materials for attending courses.

With funding from the Youth Center of the Open Society Foundation, CEP Albania organizes workshops in Tirana for students applying to universities abroad. During the 1999–00 academic year, CEP Albania is expanding these workshops to other cities. Albanian students are also enthusiastic participants at a number of regional CEP student events, including the annual Balkan Debate Forum, which CEP Albania helps organize.CEP Albania has recently initiated a Translation Workshop at the University of Elbasan to assist lecturers in preparing high quality translations of classic texts in the social sciences.

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