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TOMSK, 26 May 2015 – Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) and Tomsk State University (TSU), Russia will explore the possibility of extending research collaboration and offering joint degrees at postgraduate level in selected areas of mutual strength and expertise.

This was stated by USM Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research & Innovation), Professor Dato’ Dr. Muhamad Jantan at a meeting with the Rector of TSU, Professor Dr. Eduard V. Galazhinskiy here today.

“The possibility of forming a consortium of universities that will collaborate is a good move because in the current scenario of higher education we need to be able to collaborate with many universities in order to push [the development of] specific programmes,” said Muhamad, responding to a suggestion on the issue by Galazhinskiy.

Muhamad further stated that this would enhance student mobility while pursuing their study programme. The proposed consortium would consist of universities from various countries which would come up with one common syllabus for a particular postgraduate course. Each member of the consortium would provide input and expertise so that prospective students could then have the freedom to move and determine their direction throughout their course of study without being restricted to only one university or country.

The meeting between representatives from USM and TSU was held on the occasion of an MOU signing between the two universities to build upon a recently signed agreement on research collaboration between USM’s School of Biological Sciences and TSU’s Biopolymers and Biotechnology Laboratory. Other areas of possible research collaboration between the two universities to be discussed on this visit include bio-diversity and indigenous knowledge, including archaeology and ethnographic studies.

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Established in 1878, TSU is one of the oldest universities in Russia and is located in the historical university city of Tomsk, where one in five inhabitants is a university going student. It is a leading university in the Asian part of Russia and well known as an innovation-active university.

TSU was recently placed among the top 4 universities in the Russian programme for Competitiveness Enhancement of Leading Russian Universities Among Global Research and Education Centers (the Project 5-100).

Under Project 5-100 the federal government will provide support to selected leading Russian universities with the target of achieving world class level. The success of Project 5-100 will be measured by 5 Russian universities entering the top 100 of global university rankings by 2020.


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Also present at the MOU signing ceremony were TSU Vice-Rector for Academic Affairs Associate Professor Victor Dyomin, Vice-Rector for Academic Research Professor Ivan Ivonin, Deputy Vice-Rector for Research Professor Yury Kistenev, Head of International Programs Office Dr Mikhail Mochalov and Vice-Rector for Informatisation Professor Oleg Zmeev. Members of the USM delegation also included Director of the Research Creativity and Management Office (RCMO) Professor Dr. Lee Keat Teong, Professor Dr. K. Sudesh Kumar and Associate Professor Dr. Wan Maznah Wan Omar, both from the School of Biological Sciences and Deputy Director of USM’s Media and Public Relations Centre, Dr Nurul Farhana Low Abdullah.

Text: Dr Nurul Farhana Low Abdullah

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