The Bulgarian Islamic Academy opened its doors to the first applicants in 2017. At the end of the two-year course of doctoral studies, six graduates are ready to present their theses in the Arabic and Russian languages to the scholars.
The subjects of their research concern both study and introduction into scientific circulation of the Islamic theologian heritage of the Russian Muslims, as well as particular issues of Islamic Law, Theology, Quran Sciences and others.
In order to organize defences in June of the current year, there has been established the Council for the Defence of Theses for the Doctoral Degree in Islamic Sciences on the basis of the Academy.
The establishment of the Council was preceded by hard work on the analysis and study of the existing legal framework in the field of organization and regulation of the network of dissertation councils within the work of the Higher Attestation Commission of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation, separate federal universities, including the Kazan Federal University, which are granted the right to independently award academic degrees. The great positive experience in this field of educational institutions within the system of the Russian Orthodox Church has been taken into account. In addition to it, much attention has been paid to the peculiarities of organization and functioning of the attestation system of scientific and pedagogical personnel in foreign universities, including Arabic ones.
Undoubtedly, the establishment of the Thesis Council for Islamic Sciences is unique experience in the system of higher Islamic education in Russia. It is expected that the Council will consider dissertations in major branches of Islamic sciences, including Islamic Law, Islamic Theology, Quran Sciences, Hadith Studies and many others.
It is also quite expected that not all the issues, which are raised and will be solved in the framework of organization of Thesis Council activity, have unambiguous answer. The scholars of the Academy are convinced that together with their colleagues from domestic and foreign universities and scientific-research centres involved in the work of the Council, they will manage to develop the effective system of preparation, examination and assessment of theses and awarding doctoral degrees, which guarantee a high scientific level of preparation of dissertation works. This very approach can ensure convertibility of the Doctor of Islamic Sciences diploma of the Bulgarian Islamic Academy and its recognition by both Russian and international Islamic scientific community.
The main members of the Council are the teachers of the Academy – Doctors A. Al-Saadi (Jordan), M.A. Az-Zahrawi (Syria) and M. Al-Dershavi (Syria – Turkey), Professor R.M. Mukhametshin, Associate Professor R.K. Adigamov and others.
Doctor Ismail Hamdan Bolbol (Palestine – Egypt), a famous in the Islamic world scientist, who headed the branch of Al-Azhar University in Palestine for more than 10 years, has been unanimously elected for the post of the Chairman of the Council. Ramil Adigamov, the Candidate of Historical Sciences, the Vice Rector of scientific work, is Deputy Chairman. Academic Secretary of the Council is Damir Shagaviev, the Candidate of Historical Sciences, a graduate of the Interntional Islamic University in Malaysia, the author of works devoted to the research of theological heritage of Tatar scientists, religious movements and groups in Islam and other issues.
The fact that such outstanding scholars from the Russian Federation and foreign countries as L.R. Syukiyaynen (Russia), Sh. M. Guseynov (Russia), Said Fuda (Jordan), Badig Lyaham (Syria), Muhammad Taufik Ramadan Buti (Syria), Ibrahim Mureyhi (Bahrain), Seyf Ali Asri (Yemen), Anvar Ahmad (India) and others are also the members of the Council, should be considered as an important step in this direction.
PhD Candidates R.A. Gizatullin, R.M. Sibgatulin, M.M. Haydarov, A. Sh. Mevlyutov, R.M. Nurgaleev and R.R. Faizov are the first in the history of the Academy who will defend their dissertations. All of them have passed the stage of the initial discussion of works at the Academic Council, where external specialists were invited. Then they presented the main results of their research at the preliminary defence, which took place at the meeting of the Thesis Council. The defence is scheduled to take place on September 10-11, 2019.
The other part of the applicants is busy with refinement of their works. They will be able to defend their theses after completing all the required procedures.
Thus, admission to consideration, pre-defence and defence of dissertations are carried out in strict accordance with the normative documents of the Academy, which regulate the activity of the Thesis Council.
In the nearest future, it is planned to create subject-matter departments, which will assume the part of functions of scientific support. They will also control the process of thesis research topic development by applicants and organize discussions and recommendations for defence.
The Academy faces important and responsible tasks, the success in solving which largely depends on strength and reliability of the foundation that is being laid today. There are all the reasons to hope that the Academy staff, combining high professionalism, experience and international recognition of the faculty, as well as professional competence, irrepressible energy and staff’s knowledge, their sincere faith in values of Islam, is able to ensure to the unique educational institution progressive development and prosperity.