Malawi Advanced Degree Activity (2001–2006)

In the summer of 2001, the Center for International Education began a collaborative partnership with the University of Malawi's Chancellor College, the Malawi National Examinations Board (MANEB), and the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MOEST). The USAID-funded Advanced Degree Activity was a five-year project designed to build human resource and institutional capacity to promote the planning and leadership functions of the education sector through three activities:

  • by developing Chancellor College’s capacity to offer post-graduate degree programs in Policy, Planning & Leadership and Testing & Measurement,
  • by offering advanced degree training at UMass for 22 Malawian educators, and
  • by providing technical assistance to Chancellor College, MANEB, and the MOEST. 


In late August 2001, CIE welcomed its first cohort of fourteen Malawian Master's and doctoral candidates to UMass Amherst. The group included four doctoral and ten Master's candidates. A second cohort of eight Master's candidates began their studies at UMass in August 2003, while two members of the original Master's cohort were accepted into the doctoral program. In all 24 graduate degrees were awarded through this program - 18 Master's and 6 doctorates - with 14 of them focused on Policy, Planning & Leadership and 10 focused on Testing & Measurement. 


The curriculum for both degree programs was designed to specifically address relevant educational issues in Malawi. In addition, students split their time between UMass and Malawi - they took part in intensive courses and field research in Malawi in collaboration with CIE and various Malawian institutions before returning to UMass. These 22 exceptionally motivated professionals brought an extensive amount of life and work experiences to the CIE community that won the respect of all those working on the project and beyond.

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