Muscat: The University of Technology and Applied Sciences-Nizwa (UTAS-Nizwa), obtained the approval of the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation to fund 12 research projects for 2021-22, with a total amount of OMR64,830.
Dr. Hafedh Al Rahbi, Dean of UTAS-Nizwa, said: “This funding will cover nine research projects for academics with an amount of OMR62,581 and three research projects for undergraduate students for OMR2,250. No doubt, this indicates the high levels of research awareness amongst staff and students.”
The research activities and consulting programmes at UTAS-Nizwa are managed by the Research and Consultancy Committee (RCC).
Throughout each academic year, RCC organises several research training programmes and workshops for staff and students. Exclusive MoHERI Block Funding Programme (MOHERI-BFP) orientation sessions are annually organised for Omani staff and students to ensure increased participation in MoHERI-BFP calls.
Dr. Abdullah bin Humaid Al Abri, RCC Chairman, said: “Participating in these funded research projects contributes to developing academics’ research skills by working with experienced researchers. As for students, these research projects have a long-term impact by enhancing students’ competitive abilities to obtain study opportunities in graduate studies, as well as enhancing future employment opportunities.”
The committee also encourages staff and students to seek collaboration with researchers from other higher education institutions to achieve more creative research outcomes.
The committee, for example, has recently facilitated joint research activities for UTAS-Nizwa staff and students with counterparts in the University of Nizwa (UoN) in connection with an existing MoU.
This mutual collaboration resulted in joint research publications, training programmes and funded research projects.
To recognise and motivate staff and students to publish their research outcomes, RCC conducts an annual best research paper award (BRPA). The committee received a total of 21 research papers from various departments for Call 3 (2021-2022).
The papers are usually reviewed by an external panel and one best research paper from each department/centre is awarded a cash prize and certificate.