The Markaz Education of Islamic Sciences

Noting the paucity of Islamic scholars with well command over various branches of knowledge, tradition and committed to the social reform, Jamia Markaz began its first institute of higher studies in Islamic sciences in 1982. In its curriculum design, grounding in classical Islamic canons, a high sensitivity of Islamic culture, and great clarity of vision over the causes of community are the vital elements by which our academic programme outcomes develop. These outcomes, in effect have been identified with the Arabic term Adab, an exceptional characteristic of Islamic epistemic, as Imam Abuhamid al Ghazzali, the greatest scholar and philosopher in Islamic world noted in his magnum opus ‘Resuscitation of Sciences of Religion’ (Ihya Uloomudheen). The term represents a set of meanings and values that consists of decorum, decency, comportment, and humaneness, essential for human progress in societies of any kind. Therefore, as an institute situated in a multi-cultural, pluralistic society, we take the term to our heart and try to have a complete sense of Adab in each of our growing students. The curriculum we design emphasizes on key foundational texts, deep awareness of Theological and Ideological roots, command over Arabic language (both its classical and modern variants), grounding in Islamic jurisprudence, logic and rhetoric, astronomy and Thasawwuf. Relying on some pedagogical approaches, the bachelor curriculum we developed has drawn attention to critical analysis of texts and its possible interpretive dimensions.

In 2007, Markaz had the privilege to have been recognized by the prestigious Jamiathul Azhar, (as per its syndicate order No 507, dated 25/11/1428, 5/12/2007 AH) The Most Ancient University in the Islamic world, and to get its equal status (Muadala) to conduct its three bachelor degrees in Jamia Marakaz. Those programs, known as Kulliyyath are respectively Those of Usuludheen, Shareea, and Arabic Language. In effect, the selected students, who have successfully completed the bachelor degree of Kulliyyath are likely to pursue their master studies at Jamiathul Azhar, Cairo, Egypt with full scholarship. The Al Azhar programs at Markaz (Kulliyyath) reflex a reformed form of curriculum set as convenient to learn for students living in this rapidly-changing age and to meet its emerging multi-faceted challenges- theological, ideological and Islamic-law related. Attaining some effective tools that can nurture the student’s lifelong intellectual growth in many ways is one of the greatest assets that a Markaz education can offer.

In Markaz, the students have the opportunity to interact with great minds in the field of Islamic knowledge and its different branches. They come across scores of extracurricular, literary activities and training programmes that can help them sharpen their academic skills and enrich their life experience. Effective communication, counselling, Dawa training, Spoken English are major attributes among some others. As our students pursue their studies, they are integrated with the living community by participating in a number of programmes, being carried out across the country. Students at Markaz will find its curriculum to be holistic, touching all major aspects of their life in this new world.