This semester they are students, and next semester they will teach.
Aminah Birungi and Mary Madudu are both Assistant Professors at Kyambogo University in Kampala in Uganda. They work in the Early Childhood Education Section.
This academic year FK Norway brings them to the Faculty of Education and International Studies for one year internships.
While Madudu is attending a course in Childhood in a Nordic Perspective this semester, Birungi is joining Myths, Fairytales and Legends.
– I love music and storytelling, so for me this course is perfect, says Birungi. – When working with small children, music and storytelling is very important. During my stay in Oslo I also want to learn more about how to teach and get new pedagogical skills.
The two of them have been working for three years at Kyambogo, and now they wish to learn new methods so they can improve the Early Childhood Education when they go back to Kyambogo in June next year.
– In class we meet students from all over the world and we can talk about our experiences, says Madudu. – We also use computers and the library a lot here. In kindergarten at home the children use chalk and boards and real materials.
– Parents back home want their children to learn to read and write, so even in baby class the small children hold a pencil. Here it seems like the children are taught more practical skills.
– It is nice to be a student again and exhibit what I can do, like recording a story, says Birungi. – Here the teachers respond that every answer is right, and we learn by discovering and discussing the results.
Teach in English
Living in Lillestrøm they commute to Oslo every day, and they already think the weather is cold. They wanted a change of environment for a year, and they enjoy having Internet access everywhere. They have been able to attend tours together with the other international students, and for the first time they have been on a boat ride.
Every Tuesday and Thursday they attend Norwegian classes.
– Most people we meet know English, but when attending meetings, most of what is said is in Norwegian, so it is hard to follow, says Birungi.
At Kyambogo they both teach in English - the official language in Uganda.
Oslo and Akershus University College and Kyambogo University have been partners for 13 years in building institutional capacity which includes both Academic and Administrative staff exchange.
In addition, Higher Executive Officers Charity Byarugaba and John Innocent Auk from Kyambogo are part of the administration at the Faculty this academic year.
Opportunities for international students
Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences (HiOA) offers many courses and programmes for international students. Application procedures vary according to what kind of courses or programmes you want to apply to.