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Recognition for Australian online learning through the Tokyo Convention

18 Nov 2020

On 11 November 2020, Australia, China, Japan, South Korea and other Parties to the UNESCO Asia Pacific Regional Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications in Higher Education 2011 (Tokyo Convention) issued a joint statement on Confronting COVID-19 by strengthening cooperation in qualifications recognition in the Asia-Pacific and beyond. The Australian Government Department of Education, Skills and Employment played a leadership role in developing this statement.

In the statement, the nations involved acknowledge the rapid shift to online teaching and learning to counter COVID-19’s disruptive force to education. In the year-to-date August 2020, almost 40 per cent of Australia’s international higher education student enrolments were recorded from six of the nations involved in the Tokyo Convention (China, Fiji, Japan, Mongolia, South Korea and Turkey), constituting nearly one-third of total international student enrolments across all sectors, where studies have been impacted in some way.

Parties to theTokyo Convention have committed to a fair and transparent recognition of studies and qualifications —  using non-traditional delivery modes including online and blended learning, and partial studies. This provides assurance to current and prospective students and graduates in the Asia-Pacific region, Australia and beyond, that their studies and qualifications will be recognised internationally.

The joint statement places a strong emphasis on sharing approaches to quality assurance and recognition of online learning, with a view to establishing more complementary arrangements in the longer term. Understanding alternative approaches to online learning and transnational education in the region, can benefit Australian providers as they consider opportunities for new and innovative forms of education delivery.

If you would like more information, please contact Gabrielle Davy — Multilateral Policy, International Partnerships Branch, Australian Government Department of Education, Skills and Employment.