Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

School of Politics and International Studies

Alisher Karimov

MA Democratic Studies | 2005 - 2006

Photo of Alisher Karimov

Where did you study for your undergraduate degree?
I obtained my undergraduate degree from Khujand State University, Faculty of Law which is based in Khujand the north of Tajikistan.

Why did you decide to study in the UK?
I learned that the UK university programmes are considered as most advanced and interesting. I also was interested to see a country where multiculturalism is one of the priorities. I wanted to see in practice how a real democracy works.

Why did you choose to study at POLIS and at Leeds?
The curriculum which was offered by the department was very interesting and fully met my all needs. I wanted to extend my knowledge in democracy, learn more about specific issues that are challenging democracy nowadays. I also was amazed by the academic staff which consists of high grade professors.

How did the course match your expectations?
My expectations were completely matched not just in term of academic experience but also in terms of interaction with my course mates.  I enjoyed the free discussions we had during the classes. I was amazed by the knowledge of professors that provided a massive attack on my brain to increase my little knowledge!

What would you say about the facilities in the School and at the University in general?
The facilities are great, everything is provided and very well functioning. Dormitories are very nice and comfortably constructed.

What would you say to anyone thinking of applying to your course?
Do not doubt, take your chance to learn more about democracy.  

What are the main differences in studying in the UK as opposed to your home country?
It very much differs. We have different education system inherited from the Soviets. There is a very little interaction between students and tutors, Socratic Method is almost unused.

How is life different in the UK to your home country?
The UK is developed country whereas Tajikistan is in transition. Moreover, Tajikistan is still trying to give up the stereotypes inherited from the Soviet past. Democracy has never been on the ground, therefore, the difference is obvious and hard not to notice. The UK is very famous for its multicultural approach, for its generous attitude to Commonwealth countries. 

What would you say to anyone from your home country thinking of studying in the UK/at POLIS?
I strongly recommend you to take this incredible chance!

What did you like best about Leeds?
I liked the student life which provided me with great experiences. I never lived alone so far from my country for such a long period. I received great international practice interacting in diverse society.

How has your course helped your career?
At the moment, I am a manager for Promoting Transparency and Accountability project lead by UNDP CO in Tajikistan, I think it says enough how the course and studying in Leeds helped me.

Tell us about your favourite lecturer.
My favourite lecturer was John Schwarzmantel, a very kind and caring person with a vast knowledge of the democracy.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
Reading news, watching movies.

What are your plans for the future?
One day with God blessing to run for the presidential election.

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