Two National Individual Consultants to provide technical support to MOES, RT in integration of Competency Based Education and blended learning in teacher pre-service programmes, 5 months

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UNICEF - United Nations Children's Fund

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Application deadline 2 months ago: Sunday 13 Nov 2022 at 18:55 UTC

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UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, education

The fundamental mission of UNICEF is to promote the rights of every child, everywhere, in everything the organization does — in programs, in advocacy, and in operations. The equity strategy, emphasizing the most disadvantaged and excluded children and families, translates this commitment to children’s rights into action. For UNICEF, equity means that all children have an opportunity to survive, develop and reach their full potential, without discrimination, bias, or favoritism. To the degree that any child has an unequal chance in life — in its social, political, economic, civic, and cultural dimensions — her or his rights are violated. There is growing evidence that investing in the health, education, and protection of a society’s most disadvantaged citizens — addressing inequity — not only will give all children the opportunity to fulfil their potential but also will lead to sustained growth and stability of countries. Therefore, the focus on equity is so vital. It accelerates progress towards realizing the human rights of all children, which is the universal mandate of UNICEF, as outlined by the Convention on the Rights of the Child, while also supporting the equitable development of nations.

Quality and relevance of learning opportunities are key concerns in the Republic of Tajikistan for all students, particularly for girls. Despite, comparable data on learning outcomes is missing, low qualifications of teachers at preservice and in service levels particularly in relation to active teaching methods and skills continue to be a major challenge impacting on the learning outcomes of children and adolescents. In Tajikistan the gaps between teacher demand and supply have resulted in severe shortages of qualified teachers. Shortages of qualified teaches and quality of teacher preparation at the preservice level further undermine the effectiveness of development interventions aiming to improve student access to quality education.

Currently, the Government of Tajikistan prioritizes strengthening the competency-based approach in education through the revision of the curriculum, strengthening of teacher professional development and reforming the assessment system. In 2020, the Government of Tajikistan has also partnered with UNICEF within the framework of the “Support to National Education Development Strategy for the period until 2030” project, jointly implemented with the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) and the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) - herewith referred to as the project. This project is aimed at supporting the curriculum reform through the following activities:

1) stocktaking of current achievements;

2) improving pre-service and in-service teacher training systems through introduction of blended learning modalities and Competency Based Education (CBE) pedagogy

3) revision of Math and Language curriculum and design of language materials,

4) introduction of new formative and summative assessment strategies and

5) strengthening of in-classroom support system.

Since 2012 efforts have been taken by the MoES to transition from knowledge to competency-based education and in 2019 the country announced that CBE was mainstreamed in all grades of general secondary education. However, a number of national learning assessments completed in 2020 and 2021 and a stocktaking of CBE resources exercise conducted within the framework of GPE/ISDB project by UNICEF, demonstrated that there are still gaps in implementation of CBE, which need to be addressed to ensure improved students’ learning outcomes at all levels. UNICEF has leveraged partnerships and expertise to reform the in-service teacher professional development and in-classroom support systems promoting a unified approach to teacher learning and growth through establishing Continuous Professional Learning system. However, pre-service teacher training system continues to follow an outdated knowledge-based curriculum and remains delinked from the process of CBE reforms in General Secondary Education. Its misalignment with the Teacher Competency Framework hinders preparation of new teachers able to perform in the new CBE-based schools, and creates a need to retrain them putting additional financial and human burden on the in-service teacher professional development system.

UNICEF is seeking for national expertise to support international institutional consultants to address the capacity gaps in pre-service teacher education and training system, this will complement the international and national expertise already mobilized to address CBE in general secondary education with a focus on a) revision of the curriculum and b) reforming in-service teacher professional development and support systems. The interventions are expected to introduce the new models and CBE approach in the pre-service teacher training institutions to ensure that newly appointed teachers come prepared with CBE knowledge and skills, receive adequate support in the start of their teaching careers and become champions of CBE reform in general secondary schools.

How can you make a difference?

The purpose of this assignment is to support the MoES and 4 selected pedagogical universities in aligning the pre-service teacher training with CBE approaches in General Secondary Education through expanding at pre-service level the models, approaches and best practices piloted in in-service professional development and support system.

The tasks of this assignment will contribute to linking the teacher pre-service institutions curriculum with the Teacher Competency Framework and enable it to produce competent teachers able to deliver inclusive competency-based curriculum. Two consultants are expected to work with Tajik State Pedagogical University (TSPU) with involvement of technical experts from other pedagogical faculties and universities from Tajikistan.

To achieve the objectives of this assignment, the following key interventions will be implemented together with international consultants:

  • Revision of the current curriculum of pre-service teacher training institutions/departments with incorporation of a new course based on inclusive competency-based pedagogy

  • Revision of the current model of teacher practicum to enable student teachers to explore actual competency-based practice

  • Introduce Action Research at Bachelor and/or Master levels to build reflective teaching competencies

  • Introduce blended learning as an additional modality for delivery of quality courses

  • Strengthen the capacity of pre-service teacher training institutions/departments in designing and delivering inclusive CBE based courses/syllabuses

  • Develop a model of CBE Glossary to be uploaded and updated regularly on online platforms (being developed by the MoES)

The tasks and deliverables will be distributed between two consultants. The key tasks of this assignment will include:

Stream 1: Introduction of CBE in pre-service (mirroring the CBE reform in general secondary education)

  • Support international institutional consultants with conducting a functional review and baseline of current teacher preparation system, including existing curriculum at pedagogical institutions/departments, modalities of its delivery, student teacher practicum and previous CBE related implementations at pre-service level and provide recommendations on aligning the preservice teacher training system with the CBE approaches, including linkages with in-service teacher professional development, national curriculum and assessment.

  • Support international institutional consultants during development of a blended course on CBE inclusive pedagogy for student teachers – the course will be aimed at developing key teaching competencies through a combination of theoretical course and reflective practice during practicum.

Stream 2: Introduction of Action research at Bachelor and/or Master levels to build reflective teaching competencies

  • Support international institutional consultants with desk research of the current approach to end of semester written assignment and bachelor dissertation of students of pedagogical faculties

  • Develop a model for the action research approach to pedagogical research

  • Develop a course on Action Research for student teachers of the pedagogical universities (codevelopment with a task force under the TSPU)

  • Provide ongoing capacity building and guidance to the faculty of the Pedagogical university and departments in supervising the students’ action research (at least 25)

Stream 3: Introduction of blended learning as an additional modality for delivery of quality courses

  • Support international institutional consultants with desk research of blended learning approaches used in higher education in Tajikistan

  • Desk research of currently developed courses on the principles of blended learning/distance


  • Develop a course on e-learning in the classroom for student teachers

  • Build the capacity of minimum 25 faculty members to develop and deliver blended learning courses (final number of members is expected to be identified following the inception and desk review as national coverage)

Stream 4: Development of glossary of pedagogical terms

  • Support international institutional consultants with desk research of the current terminology used in currently available resources at MoES and its affiliated agencies, as well as those produced by development partners

  • Develop a model for a constantly updated glossary and procedures for its usage and update on a regular basis

  • Building the capacity of key task force and institutions on maintenance of the CBE glossary

Duration: 220 working days for two consultants

Location: Home-based, with in-country travel to the regional universities if required. The consultant is

required to submit an advance request for obtaining formal permission at least one month before the

actual visit.

Period: November 2022 – October 2023

Consultant 1: Off-site: 110 days

Consultant 2: Off-site: 110 days

Reporting to: Education Specialist,

Supervisor: Chief Education (OIC)


The assignment will be carried out in overall 220 days for two consultants spread over a period ranging from 10 November 2022 to 20th October 2023. Deliverables for each specific streams of this consultancy aligned with the tasks for Year 1. Each consultants will be tasked to work with separate two national universities.

Deliverables for consultant 1 (Working with Tajik State Pedagogical University (TSPU) and National University of Tajikistan (NUT)) Click here to see the table. Deliverables for consultant 1.docx

Deliverables for consultant 2 (Working with Russian and Tajik Slavonic University, Tajik State University of Languages). Click here to see the table. Deliverables for consultant 2.docx

Note: Based on availability of qualified specialist this consultancy may be divided between several consultants.

Due to COIVD19, the work and deliverables are subject to change. Consultancy need to be flexible to adjust to any unforeseen adjustments that might occur during the implementation.

Upon completion of the deliverables, the following documents shall be developed and submitted to the UNICEF Learning Section in soft copy:

  • Detailed reports should be submitted to UNICEF in Tajik language in word and pdf formats. The reports will be reviewed and feedback provided by UNICEF.

Performance indicators for the evaluation of results

The evaluation of the results will be based on:

  1. Technical and professional competence (quality of the products delivered to UNICEF);
  2. Scope of work (e.g. No. of meetings with the stakeholders);
  3. Quality of work (quality of documents submitted);
  4. Quantity of work (completing the tasks indicated in the table above within the set timeframe)

In addition, such indicators as work relations, responsibility, drive for results, and communication will be taken into account during the evaluation of the Consultant’s work.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…

Education: University degree in the fields of higher education, social sciences with a focus on teacher preparation and professional development, competency-based education, use of technology, blended-learning approaches.

Work Experience: At least 3-5 years of work experience in a relevant field, with focus on pre-service teacher training, development of courses on pedagogy and introduction of blended learning modalities of delivery. Work experience in Tajikistan specifically with higher education institutions and other NGOs that work on this filed is appreciated.

Technical Knowledge: Strong knowledge of pedagogy, Higher Education course design, teacher preparation curriculum.

Competencies: Good pedagogical, analytical and conceptual thinking. Excellent writing, communication and presentation skills with stakeholders. Ability to work under pressure and commitment to work to tight timeframe. Good writing skills.

Language: Fluency in Tajik is required. Knowledge of Russian and English is an asset.

Qualified candidates are requested to submit:

  • A technical proposal with proposed methodology/approach to development of higher education programme, managing the project, showing understanding of tasks and work plan (no price information should be contained in the technical proposal).
  • Curriculum vitae (CV).
  • Financial quote in TJK Somoni. The financial quote should include only the cost of technical assistance. Additional costs and logistics of the events will be covered by UNICEF through separate contractors.
  • Applications without a financial quote will not be considered.

Queries can be sent with the subject line “Two National Individual Consultancies to provide technical support to the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Tajikistan in integration of Competency Based Education and blended learning in teacher pre-service programmes”.

Applications must be received in the system 13 November 2022 on our website.

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF's values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, Accountability, and Sustainability (CRITAS).

To view our competency framework, please visit here.

UNICEF is here to serve the world’s most disadvantaged children and our global workforce must reflect the diversity of those children. The UNICEF family is committed to include everyone, irrespective of their race/ethnicity, age, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, socio-economic background, or any other personal characteristic.

UNICEF offers reasonable accommodation for consultants/individual contractors with disabilities. This may include, for example, accessible software, travel assistance for missions or personal attendants. We encourage you to disclose your disability during your application in case you need reasonable accommodation during the selection process and afterwards in your assignment.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.

The selected candidate is solely responsible to ensure that the visa (applicable) and health insurance required to perform the duties of the contract are valid for the entire period of the contract. Selected candidates are subject to confirmation of fully-vaccinated status against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) with a World Health Organization (WHO)-endorsed vaccine, which must be met prior to taking up the assignment. It does not apply to consultants who will work remotely and are not expected to work on or visit UNICEF premises, programme delivery locations or directly interact with communities UNICEF works with, nor to travel to perform functions for UNICEF for the duration of their consultancy contracts.

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