Northwesten and Georgetown Seminar on Migrants in Doha Contributes to QF Multiversity Through Research and Exchange
Professors from Georgetown University in Qatar (GU-Q) and Northwestern Qatar, QF partners, are collaborating to offer a course titled: “The Doha Seminar on Migrants and Megacities” in the fall 2021 term, bringing together 18 juniors and seniors from both universities for an in-person course on the role of migrants in Doha’s emergence as a global city.
Jointly taught by Dr. Hasan Mahmud (Northwestern Qatar) and Dr. Uday Chandra (GU-Q), this year’s seminar has been expanded into a fieldwork-driven course that offers enrolled students the opportunity to gain valuable research skills and become knowledge-producers.
Through individual and group projects focused on personal interviews and ethnographic fieldwork among Doha’s diverse migrant communities, students are learning how to conduct empirical studies to understand the role played by migrants from Asia and Africa in Doha’s growth and in defining the national identity of Qatar, explained Dr. Chandra.
“We believe that project-based learning encourages active student learning. Also, after a year and a half of Zoom, we wanted to get students off their chairs and away from the screen, to inspire student engagement and boost learning outcomes,” he said. “We know that student motivation to learn by doing is much higher than the traditional lecture-exam-essay format.”
The collaborative approach to the Doha Seminar goes beyond program development, resulting in both scholars teaching each class together. As Dr. Mahmud notes, the co-teaching dynamic between professors offers students a unique classroom experience. “We come with different but complementary perspectives, and students like to see us bounce ideas off each other. The synergy is palpable, which motivates students to join the discussions around Doha’s evolution at a highly engaged level.”
The benefits of multiversity programs go beyond classroom engagement, he added, noting that “the expertise of Northwestern students in communication and production media and the critical perspective of Georgetown students nicely complement one another, and offer opportunities for innovative projects, including short film, documentary, and other digital materials.”
This is the third year that the Doha Seminar, launched by Northwestern Qatar in 2014, has been taught jointly with GU-Q, serving as a model for collaboration among the partner universities at Education City and contributing to the fulfillment of Qatar Foundation’s multiversity vision.
Georgetown University in Qatar
Georgetown University in Qatar (GU-Q) is an additional location of Georgetown University, based in Education City in Doha. The University offers a four year undergraduate program in international affairs leading to the Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service (BSFS) degree. Students have the opportunity to select one of four majors, a minor, and one of three certificates.