The Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research in Libya has closed 20 private colleges and universities in various parts of the country for failing to meet academic standards.
All academic certificates granted by these institutions will be reviewed, the ministry said in a statement posted on its Facebook page, and the institutions will be unable to enroll new students for the next academic year until the ministry renews their licenses. Some 2,250 students affected by the decision will be transferred to other universities.
The ministry acted on the recommendation of a committee formed of university presidents and teaching staff. Its chairman, Faraj Ali Abu Sha’ala, the president of Misurata University, explained in a telephone interview that all of the closed institutions “do not meet the required quality standards, in addition to a general weakness in educational outcomes.”
The committee made field visits to private universities across the country to assess their work before submitting its recommendations to the Minister of Higher Education. (See a related article, “A Regional Survey: How Arab Countries Regulate Quality in Higher Education.”)
In addition to the students, 483 teaching staff have been affected by the decision, at a time when academic life in Libyan universities has been suspended due to the increase in the rate of Covid-19 infections. (See a related article, “Libya’s Universities Close Again Due to Covid-19.”)