Sabauni news

Leaner Centered Teaching training

30 May 2019 “Learner Centered Teaching” training for academic staff was held at Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani University, where academic staff from 9 Georgian universities were attended. the first part of the event the trainers shared the information on LCT with trainees, the following methods were emphasized: Task based learning (TBL), problem-based learning (PBL), project-based learning (PBL), Discovery learning and learning contract, while the second part the participants worked in the groups according to the handouts. The training was headed by Sabauni professors, Ekaterine Natsvlishvili  and Gvantsa Abdaladze, who were involved in the project from the beginning.

Training module “Learner Centered Teaching” was elaborated within Erasmus+ KA2 “Sustainable Learner Centered Teaching, advanced Resources for Georgia and China” (STAR). In the framework of the project, the Manual was created where is collected the best practice regarding the above-mentioned teaching approaches. Beside this, the Center for Professional Development was established at the University aiming to prepare and offer trainings for professional development to our academic staff.

After the training the participants were awarded by Certificate.

Center for Professional Development will regularly offer such kind of trainings to academic staff of Sabauni and other stakeholders as well.

Rector and Vice rector at FUCE GA

On 16-18 May 2019 prof. Vaja Vardidze, rector and prof. Dimitry Gegenava, vice rector of Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani Universtiy paid a visit at the University of Antwerp (Belgium), where General Assembly of FUCE (Federation of European Catholic Universities) was held. The topic of the GA was “European Humanism in the making”

 The Assembly was divided into three parts. The topic of the first part was “The European Social and Political Construction: Challenges for the future”, where speeches were delivered by Steven Van Hecke, prof. of KU Leuven and Franck Vandenbroucke, prof. of the University of Antwerp.

The second part was dedicated to the newly established interdisciplinary study program (for BA and MA) “European Humanism in the making”. The program and course coordinators have presented the educational program and after that the audience discussed it. Establishing the program, FUCE wanted to address the Pope Francis’ question “What happened to humanist Europe, the defender of human rights, democracy and freedom?” accordingly, during the assembly the following questions were discussed:

“How to reinterpret the values that underpin European Humanism”

“How relevant is European humanism in a globalized world and how may it apply to current society”

“How can European humanism contribute to current issues of governance, citizenship, prosperity, solidarity and human development?”

How do we study European humanism and how to apply it in higher education”?

During the third part of the meeting “hope for the future” was the topic of discussion and seminars. Among the speakers, there was Herman Van Rompuy, Minister of State, former Belgian prime Minister and first President of the European Council was presented.

During the GA the new president of FUCE was elected. Rev. Prof. Micahel Mullaney, president of St. Patrick’s College Maynooth (Irland) will take the post of the president for the next three year. From the 2013 the president of the federation was Rev. Prof. Magnin Thierry, rector of Catholic University of Lyon (France).

In the framework of study program “European Humanism in the making” there will be held summer school for the student in the Italy (University of LUMSA), where two students of Sabauni, Khatia Khapava and Mariam Abuashvili will participate in this July.

Sabauni became a member of FUCE last year and since then, it is actively involved in the various events organized by FUCE. The member of assembly discussed the FUCE grant question and according to the decision, three students of Sabauni will get study mobility grant for the next academic year (winter semester).

Sabauni Professors at International Conference in Warsaw

Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani University prof. Tamtam Mikaberidze, dean of faculty of Business and Tourism, affiliated professors of the faculty, Nino Papachashvili and Marine Tavartkiladze participated in the International Conference “World Economy 2019 – learning from the past and designing the future”, organized by the collegium of World Economy, which was held on 9-10 May 2019 at Economic School of Warsaw (Poland).

Sabauni professors participated in the different sections and their speeches raised big interest between the conference participants.

In the framework of the conference the future prospective of the future cooperation was planned.

Public lectures of Polish Professor

13-17 May of 2019 Sabauni hosted rev. Jaroslaw Marczewski, associated professor of John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin within Erasmus+ KA107 teaching mobility. In framework of his visit, prof. Marczewski delivered public lectures for the students on the topic “Tolerance”. During the lecture, professor spoke about the paradigm of Tolerance in Bible, he referred also the issues of Tolerance in the early ages and Modern Europe. After the completion of the lecture, the students were awarded with the certificates.

Within the visit, prof. Marczewski led meeting with the administration of Sabauni, where the future plans of cooperations were discussed. After the visit, professor shared his opinion to us: “For me, Erasmus+ program at Sabauni is a synonym of development and broadening academic horizons. It is also a great opportunity to get to know the culture of the country, Georgian people, their customs and beautiful historic places. In my personal opinion, the biggest profit of Erasmus+ mobility programs are getting to know other people connected with the academic environment. As a result, you can enrich each other with views on interesting and current topics.


Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani University is involved in Erasmus+ KA107 from 2015-2016 and since that time, we have student and staff mobility with partner universities.

International Conference in Vienna

Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani University professor, father Gabriele Bragantini and student Mariam Doghonadze participated in the international conference “Unified in Baptism”, which was held 23th – 28th April in the student house of Jaun Damascus (Vienna, Austria).

The working topic of the theological conference and workshop for the students was “Unified in Baptism”. The participants of the conference and workshop were greeted by official letter of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.

During the conference and workshop problems and disagreements between the East and West churches were discussed, focusing on the practice of re-baptize. Gabriele spoke about the topic why is it written in the Creed “I confess One Baptism for the Forgiveness of Sins”?!

The participants of the conference were Theologians and the students of faculty of Theology from Germany, Georgia, Ireland and Ukraine. The thesis of the conference will be published in Georgian and in German languages.

I am very thankful that I had an opportunity to participate in the working week and discuss the interesting topics with the professionals from different countries. I think, such kind of meetings will contribute to the restoration and interconnection between the catholic and orthodox churches – Mariam Doghonadze said.

The second Georgian-German theological conference was organized by the founders of the Student’s house of John Damascus, Doctor of Theology Givi Lomidze and prof. Michaela Hashteter .

Sabauni Professor at the University of Social Sciences in Lodz

Dimitri Kobakhidze, affiliated professor of faculty of Business and Tourism at Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani University took part in Erasmus+ KA107 program with the University of Social Sciences in Lodz (SAN) in April 13-17. Within the program he delivered the lectures on Marketing with the students of SAN and the Klark University (Lodz, Poland). For evaluation of the visit, we asked few questions to prof. Kobakhidze.

Prof. Dimitri, what was important point you can mention in this mobility program?

This program gave me to get to know my Polish colleagues and establish good business and friendly relationship with them. Sharing the experience and opinions on teaching methods was very interesting for me. I was curios about the Poland and what I saw in Lodz, was more than I expected.

How do you think, what is the main benefit of such kind of exchange programs (Erasmus+, Exchange programs) for the students and academic staff?

I think, that such programs are very important, as we have now different reality than before, when the education was necessary for only local labor market. Nowadays, alumni of the universities can be considered as the competitive candidates for international labor area. Which on the other hand requires from the home university implementation of standards for getting Universal and global knowledge? Thus, it is very important build the partnership between the foreign universities.

Would you recommend participation in Erasmus+ program?

Yes, sure, I strongly recommend, as this mobility program gives the opportunity to share/ exchange experience and best practice with foreign colleagues and implement it in your teaching practice. For this reason, staff exchange is good for the universities as well. We can think, what we can adopt from our foreign colleagues and at the same time, what we have special, that could be shared with foreigners.

Sulkan-Saba Orbeliani University is involved in the Erasmus+ KA107 programs from 2015-2016 academic year and since that time, there are number of students and staff mobilities in the partner universities and vice versa.


In the photo, from the left: Mrs.  joanna szczecińska (head of SAN International Office), Mr. Adam Bednarek (Head of the Clark University-SAN) and Mr. Dimitri Kobakhidze

International Conference Free Market Road Show

13th April 2019 Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani University hosted 11th International Conference “Free Market Road Show” Europe at a crossroads – reinventing freedom 30 years after Wall. Each year the annual conference takes place in different countries and cities of Europe and Caucasus where the scientist, businessmen, diplomats, officials, students and just interested persons are participating.

The conference was organized by faculty of Business and Tourism in cooperation with New Economic School-Georgia. In the beginning of the event welcome speech were delivered by prof. Vaja Vardidze, rector of Sabauni, H.E. Arad Benkoe the Ambassador of Republic of Austria in Georgia and Gia Jandieri, vice president of New Economic School-Georgia.

Prof. Tamta Mikaberidze, dean of the faculty of Business and Tourism and affiliated lecture Giorgi Chkhikvadze were the main moderators of the conference, which was focused on European Values, open boarders and the possibilities. Among the varies topics It was highlighted the importance of Liberalism, Rule of Law, Brexit, role of the governance in the monetary system.

The speakers were scientists and practitioner professionals invited from abroad:

Prof. Dr. Christopher Lingle, (US) International Political Economic Advisor for the Asian Institute for Diplomacy and International Affairs (AIDIA – Kathmandu) and Member of the Academic Advisory Council of the Globalization Institute (Brussels).

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Vahagn Khachaturyan, AM Former Mayor of Yerevan;

Kai Weiss, DE Research and Outreach Coordinator at the Austrian Economics Center and a board member of the Hayek Institute. His main research interests are European and EU politics, philosophy, and technology.

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Federico Fernandez, AR  Federico N. Fernández is President of Fundación Internacional Bases (Rosario, Argentina) and a Senior Fellow with the Austrian Economics Center (Vienna, Austria). He has been actively engaged in work within the Liberty movement for more than a decade.

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Richard Teather, UK; The leading British academic specialising in offshore tax jurisdictions. As well as academic work he also acts as consultant to governmental and industry bodies. His writings have been published in three continents, translated into over 10 foreign languages.

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Thomas Bachheimer, AT President of the European Goldstandard Institute, he has been trading at stock exchanges in Dublin, Munich and Vienna very successfully with a special focus on government bonds and commodity derivatives.

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From Georgian side the speakers were

Paata Sheshelidze, GE Paata Sheshelidze economist, co-founder (Since August, 2001) and president of the New Economic School – Georgia

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Gia Jandieri, GE In 2001 Mr. Jandieri co-founded and since that time has been the Vice-president of New Economic School – Georgia.

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Akaki Tsomaia, GE

Professor of Economics at University of Georgia, Caucasus University and Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani University. worked in private sector, Alumni of US Fulbright Program.

The conference was supported by Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom

LCT training for academic staff of SJUNI

10 April of 2019, “Learner Centered Teaching” training for academic staff was held at Samtskhe-Javakheti State University (Akhaltsikhe) organized by CPD center of Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani Universtiy. The training was leaded Sabauni professors and trainers Ekaterine Natsvlishvili and Gvantsa Abdaladze. The training was emphasized on the following teaching methods: Task based learning (TBL), Problem based learning (PBL), Project based learning (PBL), Discovery learning and Learning contract. The trainees got information about the competences in HE, modern teaching methods and its importance for nowadays teaching.

The training module “Learner Center Teaching” was elaborated within the Erasmus+ KA2 project “Sustainable Learner Centered Teaching, Advanced Recourses for Georgia and China” (STAR), which is running project since 2016. Based on the best experience and interesting practice of European Universities (involved in the project), there was created Manual on LCT, which is available in English and Georgian languages (also in Chinese for China). The manual includes the information about the LCT methods, examples and best practices regarding the implementation of LCT approaches.

Beside this, Center for Professional Development was established in the framework of the project STAR, which aims to care the professional development of the university academic staff.

At the end of the training, certificates were given to the participants.

CPD center will offer the trainings for academic and administrative staff regularly in the future.

STAR project is ongoing project from 2016, during the elaboration the manual and training module, the best practice of the following partner universities was considered: Masaryk University (Czech Republic, project coordinator), University of Ruse (Bulgaria), University of Coimbra (Portugal) and University college of Copenhagen (Denmark).

STAR project meeting in Masaryk University

Sabauni staff, Shorena Parunashvili, head of international Relations office and Natia Shekiladze, Head of Quality Assurance service paid a visit at Masaryk University, where the sixth meeting of STAR project was held. All the participating universities representatives attended the meeting.

The aim of the meeting was presentations of the activities planned within the project, sharing the experience and interesting practice with partners.

Natia Shekiladze “A meeting in Brno was different from the previous meetings, as we have shared our practice and fulfilled result with partners. Georgian and Chinese parts presented how they managed to establish CPD unit according to the experience gained within the project, the structure and future activities of the unit. The main aim of the CPD unit is to promote the project result through implementation of LCT methods in the HEI. The activities carried out by the partner universities in the field of teacher training were impressive. Such kind of trainings help the teachers to use LCT methods more actively in their teaching. In June, we will discuss the results of LCT implementation in study process.”

Shorena Parunashvili, head of IRO “the meeting held in Masaryk University was interesting and important for us, as we discussed the activities we have planed and realized within the project. The aim of the project is to increase awareness of LCT methods in Georgian and Chinese society and support its implementation. The European Universities has already implemented LCT 1-2 decades ago and have good experience in it, while Georgian and Chinese universities have different reality, both of the country are in the initial stage of acquisition and implementation of these methods.

During the meeting, we discussed the online platform, its content and importance of its usage. On the platform there will be uploaded manual of LCT methods, elaborated within the project, methods itself with the examples from each university. There will be also opportunity to ask question to expert and get qualified answer from European partners. Online platform will be available at the end of June.”

According to the agenda, the participant have good possibility to enjoy guided city tour, Brno underground and Mendel’s museum.

STAR project “Sustainable Learner Centered Teaching – Advance Resource for Georgia and China) funded within the Erasmus+ KA2, has started in October of 2016 and will end in October of this year. In frame of the project the manual of LCT methods was elaborated, which is focused on the five following approaches: Problem Based Learning (PBL), Project Based Learning (PBL), Task Based Learning (TBL), Discovery Learning (DL) and Learning Contract (LC).

In the June, the final conference will be held in Tbilisi, where the results of the project and its implementation will be discussed.

Manual in English is available here.

A workshop for academic staff of faculty of Theology

On 20th February a workshop for the academic staff of Faculty of Theology was held at Sabauni. The workshop was organized by the Center for Professional Development of the University. During the workshop the new approaches regarding the accreditation was discussed with Mrs. Natia Shekiladze, the head of Quality Assurance Office. Also, the participants worked in groups on the methodology of educational programs and syllabus writing. Besides this, the several problematic issues was discussed.
CPD unit was established under the Erasmus+ KA2 “Sustainable Learner Centred teaching – advanced Resources for Georgia and China” project. The aim of the center is to support professional development of the academic staff of Sabauni. The University will offer such kind of trainings and workshops to its academic personnel.