Our academics are more than just that; and we wanted to find out more. Our Programme Leader, Hassan Baajour, shared insights into his life with us and informed us of how he got into teaching.

How long have you been teaching?

I’ve been teaching at QA for 3 years but before doing this, I was a research officer and an author.

What’s your favourite thing about your role?

Getting engaged with new people, getting to know about their mentality, way of thinking, culture and traditions.

What’s the age range of the students on your program?

We have mature students so you can expect any age really but the range is anywhere from 20 to 45 years old. Most of the students are international students except for the part-time degrees which are mostly home students.

How do you think you’ve helped students with their studies?

We used to have a small number of students and even though that’s changing now, we still have a very cosy feel around the campus. For me, just being part of the team and always being there if they need anything or if they have any questions.

How would you describe your style of teaching?

It’s very interactive. I would say that the best way of teaching is teaching the students how to think. For example, the Computing and Technology course is all about programming and getting into the IT world and solving technical issues. In this context, there are many challenges and most likely, students will not be able to grasp everything in one intensive course and this why I teach them how to teach themselves. They start to think about the bigger picture and they start thinking for themselves instead of just copying my style of thinking.

What’s your favourite thing to do outside of work?

Playing chess. I used to participate in competitions and be part of clubs when I was younger but now it’s mostly online.

Do you think the game of chess related to the module you’re teaching?

Yes of course, especially in programming because programming is not only about writing a script. It’s about typing a set of instructions, step by step to achieve and accomplish a specific task. You need to be very well organized and structured in your thinking and this is exactly how chess works. If you’re not focused you will be stuck both in the world of programming and in the world of chess.

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