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Tuesday, May 15, 2018, 10:41 (GMT+7)
The Army Academy enhances its education-training quality

Thoroughly grasping and strictly obeying the Party’s line on education, resolutions and directives by the Central Military Commission (CMC) and Ministry of National Defense (MoD), particularly the Resolution by the 11th Party Central Committee’s 8th Plenum on “Fundamental and comprehensive reforms in education and training to meet the requirements of industrialization and modernization under socialist-oriented market economy mechanism”; Resolution 86-NQ/ĐUQSTW, dated March 29th, 2007 by the CMC on “Education and Training in the new situation", over the past years, the Army Academy (hereinafter the Academy) has gained positive results pertaining to education and training. At the forefront of this is the fact that the Academy has attached much importance to the standardization of its contingent of lecturers quantitatively and qualitatively, to its selective additional curricula as well as effective and substantive reforms in its teaching and learning methods. The Academy’s Party Committee, Directorate and faculties have focused on both increasing the number of its lecturers in transitional periods and equipping its learners with enough virtues and capabilities. As a result, the Academy’s education-training quality has increasingly improved as evidenced by the fact that 100% of its learners pass exams annually with over 90% of them doing so with credit and distinction. So far, over 50,000 command and staff officers at regimental and divisional levels and hundreds of Ph.D. and Master’s degree holders in military science, who graduated from more than 400 courses run by the Academy, have successfully fulfilled their assigned tasks and have been highly valued by the MoD and units across the Vietnam People’s Army (VPA).

The Academy’s launch of the training season in 2017

Nowadays, the military build-up, the enhancement of defense capabilities and Homeland protection in the new situation set out a more demanding requirement for the education and training of the VPA in general and the Academy in particular. In order to successfully fulfil the Academy’s assigned tasks, its Party Committee and Directorate have advocated that resolutions and directives by the Party, CMC and MoD should continue to be thoroughly grasped, the focal points of which are the Resolution of the 12th Party National Congress, the Resolution of the VPA’s 10th Party Congress and the Strategy for the VPA’s education-training development for 2011-2020 period. Accordingly, various appropriate measures have been synchronously taken with emphasis on the following.

Firstly, regularly enhancing the quality of its contingent of lecturers to make them capable of fulfilling their assigned tasks. Being fully aware of the decisive role played by lecturers in the quality of education and training, the Academy’s Party Committee and Directorate have focused on building its contingent of lecturers with enough virtues and capabilities. Accordingly, the Academy has added managerial cadres and research fellows from its affiliates, who meet the criteria for becoming lecturers, to its faculties. The Academy has also selected those with enough virtues and capabilities from its learners and from educational institutions inside and outside the VPA in order that its faculties can be staffed by additional high-quality human resources. Furthermore, the Academy has effectively implemented personnel policies and policies regarding military families, including recruiting the relatives of the Academy’s staff to teach subjects that they excel in, or preferential treatment for housing, thereby enabling its staff to devote their mind to assigned tasks and handling the  lack of teaching personnel. This marks a breakthrough in providing high-quality human resources  for the Academy’s education and training. Basically,  the Academy’s teaching staff is quantitatively and qualitatively sufficient and gradually youthful. 

In order to make its teaching staff capable of fulfilling the assigned tasks, the Academy has also sent its carefully selected lecturers to other academies and universities inside and outside the VPA for further education while actively offering on-the-spot education to them via its faculties’ pedagogic activities. At the same time, the Academy has paid due attention to its lecturers’ pedagogic activities such as teaching practice, mock teaching, excellent teachers’ contests, thereby bringing about positive transformations in their teaching skills to meet the requirements set out. In addition to teaching, the Academy has attached importance to its lecturers’ scientific research. A lot of their research studies at the ministerial level have been carried out qualitatively, putting forward well-reasoned scientific arguments to contribute to enriching the theory on the military art as well as enhancing their own professional competence.  The Academy has often sent its lecturers to military units for field trips and fieldwork as well  as to training workshops abroad so that they can enhance their own professional competence and apply hands-on experience to their lectures. In order to standardize its teaching staff, the Academy has introduced and effectively implemented the Project entitled “Improving the lecturers’ command of foreign languages for 2016-2020 period and beyond”. Therefore, the Academy has seen considerable improvements in its lecturers’ language skills in recent years to effectively serve the purpose of teaching and researching. The above-mentioned appropriate measures have enabled the Academy’s lecturers to be statutorily qualified for the teaching job with a far higher number of those with profound specialist knowledge, extensive hands-on experience and post-graduate degrees.

Secondly, comprehensively reforming its curricula to square with learners’ different knowledge levels. The  Party Committee and Directorate has advocated that reforms in the Academy’s curricula should be carried out in compliance with regulations by the Ministry of Education and Training and the MoD’s direction, the Academy’s specific circumstances and its learners’ knowledge levels. Based on its goals and requirements of education and training as well as the continuation of the MoD’s framework curricula, the Academy has removed overlapping contents and introduced new ones to its curricula to square with its assigned tasks. Annually, the Academy requires that reforms in its curricula should be carried out flexibly and creatively in line with its learners’ different knowledge levels. As for command and staff officers’ training, the curriculum contents successfully combine theory with practice, up-to-date knowledge with hands-on experience of combat, leadership, command and training from a number of typical military units.  The Academy has advanced the knowledge of traditional combat tactics under the new condition of the war for Homeland protection, which has been introduced into its curricula to enable its learners to gain an in-depth knowledge of the military art and to creatively apply it to reality. Regarding post-graduates’ training, the Academy has focused on equipping them with in-depth knowledge of the military art and scientific research methods, particularly threats and challenges to the military and defense fields, forms and methods of wars of aggression, thereby putting forward specific measures to deal with them. Moreover, the Academy has devoted due attention to the reviews of its curricula and feedback from experts as well as its current learners and alumni to develop its curricula in line with reality.

Thirdly, closely combining lecturers’ improved teaching methods and learners’ proactiveness and creativity. Nowadays, scientific and technological advances have enabled learners to gain access to extensive knowledge through a lot of channels. Rather than the traditional teacher-centered approach, the Academy’s Party Committee and Directorate has paid special attention to the learner-centered approach in order to promote its learners’ proactiveness and creativity. Based on the application of scientific and technological advances as well as the employment of the learner-centered approach, the Academy has directed its faculties to bring their teaching methods into line with various subjects and learners’ knowledge levels. The Academy requires its learners to invest more time and efforts in self-study as well as interaction with their teachers and peers. The Academy has also applied modern technologies to military tactics training and exercises, thereby enabling its learners to bring into full play their creativity and assertiveness to apply their comprehensive knowledge to hi-tech warfare.

Enhancing the quality of education and training is a matter of importance to any educational institution. As a result, together with maximizing its achievements, the Academy should continue to thoroughly grasp and effectively implement the Party, CMC and MoD’s line on education and training via synchronous and effective measures to meet the requirements of the VPA’s personnel building and Homeland protection in the new situation.

Maj. Gen, Assoc. Prof. Hoang Van Minh, Ph.D., the Army Academy’s Commandant

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