Mahad’ad-Dawa Institute (MDI)
MDI imparts professional and contextual education to graduates of religious madrassahs. The aim of MDI courses is to motivate and equip madrassah graduates to work in a range of modern professions. In so doing, not only are they making an invaluable contribution in every walk of life: they are also making a respectable and independent living for themselves.
MDI exists, not in the real, but in the virtual world. In other words, the lessons of MDI are communicated to students, not in the conventional classroom environment, but online.
Every lesson is uploaded, in both summarized, written form, and in audio format, to the MDI website. From there, students of MDI are able to download every lesson to their mobile phone or computer. There are several advantages to this online teaching method. For example:
- It enables students to study at MDI while also pursuing other activities.
- It enables students to study at MDI wherever they may be located geographically: there is no need for them to be close to the MDI centre.
- It enables students to become practically acquainted with ICT.
Currently, lessons are available, in both summarized written form and in audio format, in both Pashto – the mother tongue of MDI – and English.
Study in MDI
MDI offers both professional and contextual studies, in other words, it equips students for work in a range of professions and also makes them familiar with the concepts that guide modern life. This is done within the framework of Quranic thought and traditional Islamic learning.
For example, these are some of the courses we run in the Orientation and Facilitation Centre of MDI:
- Human Rights (حقوق العباد)
- International Humanitarian Law (القانون الدّولي الانساني)
- Character Building (تهذیب الاخلاق),
- Home Economics (تدبیر المنزل)
- Political Science (السّیاسة المدنیّة)
- Environmental Studies (الاسلام و البیئة)
- Humanitarian Principles and Practice (الصدقة في مناسبة العصر)
All these subjects are taught from the perspective of Quranic learning, while also being rooted in the context of the age in which we live.
MDI lays a lot of emphasis on media training, being a sister institution of PACT Radio. PACT Radio produces a popular day-to-day Pashto radio drama Da Pulay Poray – ‘storytelling in a contemporary context’ – along with reports that cover the themes covered in the drama. PACT Radio is thus able to induct students of MDI’s Journalism and Mass Communication Department into its reporting team, giving them an avenue of employment.
Along with becoming reporters with PACT Radio, MDI graduates also constitute the entire male audience research team of PACT Radio. As with the other subjects taught in MDI, Media Studies are taught within the perspective of classical Islamic learning. A unique feature of the MDI syllabus is a module entitled Modern Journalism on the Basis of Classical Islamic Scholarship. In this module, the principles of modern journalism – factors such as the identification and cross-checking of sources and method of establishing the authenticity of reports – are looked at in the light of the principles of collection and classification of Hadith literature.
Another hallmark of Media Studies in MDI is the alignment of modern journalism with traditional storytelling, in which it is not only the details of the story that are important: it is also the moral of the story. In fact, the most important part is the moral of the story. Again, this approach is rooted in Quranic storytelling, and marks MDI and PACT Radio journalism out from conventional journalism.
Expansion of MDI
Traditional Herbal Medicine – Unani Tibb also known as Tibb-e-Nabawi – is another profession, the skills of which are imparted in MDI. MDI is constantly seeking to break fresh ground, adding new modules to the courses taught in the Institute. A Business Studies Department is muted, specialising in the principles and ethics of commerce, trade, management, banking, financial management and charity from an Islamic perspective, but in a modern setting.