Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University in Thailand have been accredited to run their own Fellowship programme, which supports staff towards recognition as Associate Fellows.
The Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University Model for Academic Recognition of Teaching (SMART) Programme is grounded in the Professional Standards Framework (PSF) and is seen by STOU as a mechanism for its staff to deliver teaching and learning support to their students more confidently and effectively.
Advance HE began working with STOU in 2018 by supporting a group of its staff to achieve Fellowship. This resulted in the Chairman of STOU Council, Prof Wichit Srisa-an, becoming the first Principal Fellow in Thailand, along with eight Fellows and six Fellows. Following the accreditation of the SMART Programme many more are expected to follow, and show a commitment to high quality learning and teaching across the institution.
Principal Fellowship compliments Professor Dr Wichit Srisa-an’s 16 honorary doctorates and numerous national and international awards which recognise his contribution to the development of education. For these achievements, he is known in Thailand as the “Father of Distance Education” and “Father of Thai Cooperative Education”.
Advance HE accreditation is recognition that the SMART Programme aligns with the PSF, and ensures that participants have shown the necessary capabilities and qualities to achieve Associate Fellowship status. The SMART Programme has been specifically designed with distance learning in mind, showing that the PSF can be applied successfully to distance and blended learning settings.
Ian Hall, Head of Membership (International) at Advance HE said: “The SMART Programme demonstrates STOU’s commitment to quality learning and teaching and we are delighted to support that through accreditation of the programme. It’s great to see the PSF being used to support staff in a distance learning context in Thailand.”
Professor Dr Wichit Srisa-an said: “The SMART Programme aims to make our already smart STOU staff SMARTer when they teach and support the learning of our students.”
STOU was officially established by Royal Charter in 1978 as Thailand's eleventh state university, and was created to provide Thai people with increased education opportunities, beginning with three schools of study: educational studies, liberal arts, and management science. Today the university has 12 schools of study with undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programmes.
Advance HE accredits continuous professional development (CPD) programmes which are delivered by higher education providers both within the UK and internationally, aligning professional development to the UKPSF. Find out more