King calls for expanding opportunities for vocational education at universities

Amman 20 March 2024 (The Royal Hashemite Court Website)- His Majesty King Abdullah II highlighted the importance of expanding vocational education opportunities at universities due to its role in economic development, during a meeting on Wednesday at Al Husseiniya Palace.

At the meeting, attended by His Royal Highness Crown Prince Al Hussein bin Abdullah II, His Majesty urged the government to plan for new university majors to accommodate graduates of the vocational education stream, in line with the updates introduced to the General Secondary Education Certificate Examination (Tawjihi).

The King directed the government to prioritise building and renovating technical and vocational education schools, while maintaining cooperation with the private sector to enhance the quality of vocational training output in industries like tourism and hospitality.

His Majesty highlighted the importance of following up on the quality of vocational education, in accordance with pre-set criteria, calling for regular evaluation.

For his part, Prime Minister Bisher Khasawneh said the government is working on matching student admission policies in higher education institutions with the new Tawjihi system, noting that the government is also encouraging students to choose the vocational stream.

His Majesty listened to a briefing by Minister of Education and Minister of Higher Education Azmi Mahafzah on the ministry’s measures to implement plans to achieve this synergy.

The minister said the academic education stream in Tawjihi will be divided into six fields—health, engineering, science and technology, languages and social sciences, Sharia and law, and business, noting that a student’s choice of field will decide the disciplines he or she can pursue through higher education.

Graduates of vocational education in Tawjihi can join the labour market, or pursue a diploma or a bachelor’s degree, said Mahafzah.

The minister added that an awareness campaign on vocational training has been launched to introduce students and their parents to changes to Tawjihi, noting that new policies of student admission to universities will be announced in the first quarter of 2024.

Mahafzah added that the new admission system has to be ready before 31 December 2025, in order to be applicable to university admission for the academic year 2026/2027.

He noted that work is underway to create mechanisms for engaging the private sector in the educational process, starting with the hospitality discipline.