Turkish Academics in Europe
When I was invited to contribute a chapter to this book on the situation of Turkish higher education, I found myself humming “An Englishman in New York”: the writer of the song set out as a poor teacher himself, and probably had to go through much hardship before he ended up as a star in the ‘Big Apple’. Turkish academics, although belonging geographically to the European area, often find themselves viewed and feeling like aliens in the European academic world. In this chapter, I shall try to illustrate the contextual reality in which Turkish academics exist as their country moves along the road towards membership of the European Union. A brief historical overview will help us to schematise a general picture aided by a few facts and figures about Turkey. The chapter will go on to provide further details concerning the present situation and the ongoing debate between the governing Justice and Development Party (AKP), which is rooted in Islamic politics, and the Higher Education Council (YÖK). I will also discuss the new regulations concerning YÖK and higher education in Turkey. Later, I shall concentrate on the reflections of Turkish academics on higher education in Turkey and on YÖK, which, I believe, will cast some light on the title, “Turkish Academics in Europe: Nomads Chasing a European Dream”
KeywordsHigh Education High Education System Military Intervention Film Festival Turkish Republic
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