Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication (Name of Journal)

Impact: Making a difference


Professional Development Centre, Karachi; Examination Board


In each of the years 1997, 1998 and 2000 a new cohort of course participants joined the two-year MEd programme at the Aga Khan University’s Institute for Educational Development in Karachi, Pakistan (AKU-IED). Some two years later 87 or 92% of the entrants graduated from the programme and returned to their respective employers or systems. This paper focuses on the employment of and roles played by these 87 ‘completing’ course participants before they entered and then after they exited from the AKU-IED MEd programme. The paper is based on interviews with the 87 graduates carried out some one year and some two years after programme completion for two of the cohorts and some eight/nine months after completion for the most recently graduated cohort. The paper charts changes in numbers in such categories as School-based educators (e.g. teachers; head teachers) and Non-school-based educators (e.g. teacher educators; university teachers) and asks whether these numbers appear to be affected by the regional and system background of graduates; their roles at entry to the programme and length of time since programme graduation. Discussion is focused on issues related to ‘flight from the classroom’ and on the need to acknowledge complexity in the design and execution of studies of programme impact.