Background Research on School Reform

TAMAM research under this theme surveys school reform in the Arab region and the challenges associated with its shortcomings.

 

Relevant research reports

Sustainable Arab Environment in a Changing Arab Climate – Dr. BouJaoude, Dr. Karami-Akkary & Dr. Khuri – 2016

BouJaoude, S., Karami-Akkary, R. & Khuri, F.R. (2016). The challenges of sustainable education in the Arab world: AUB’s current and future roles -Arab. In Saab, N. & Sadik, A. Arab Environment In A Changing Arab Climate (pp. 102-104). Published in the Report of the Arab Forum for Environment and Development (AFED). 

 

Sustainable education in the Arab world is facing a growing challenge owing to a combination of economic and political factors that require urgent solutions. Consequently, higher education is becoming increasingly unaffordable for most people, worsening social cohesion and increasing economic disparity. Tuition increases have accelerated in recent years at many universities, including the American University of Beirut (AUB). All this puts the major not-for- profit universities in the region in danger of being transformed from places of sustainable intellectual distinction to places of indefensible economic elitism. There is also a shortage of research on educational reform in Arab countries. As such, educational reformers are bound to rely on an international knowledge base that offers solutions that do not respond to local, culturally grounded needs (El-Amine, 2005). This raises the question for the role of universities in the Arab state in education for sustainable development. Over 150 years, AUB has graduated the finest physicians, engineers, businesswomen and men, classicists, political innovators, nutritionists, and public health specialists in the region. AUB’s value to the region remains unquestionable as it recruits, trains, and graduates the very best and the very brightest. Yet, addressing this problem, complex as it may be, will require that AUB help provide new opportunities for future leaders to make a difference in Lebanon, in the region, and in the world. That is, the university has proposed piloting a national service and teaching model for higher education in Lebanon, coupled with a debt-forgiveness approach in collaboration with the government of Lebanon, to restrict the brain drain. Finally, as exemplified by its leadership in TAMAM, AUB must also be a leader in pedagogy. This will serve to build the educational foundations for students who desire an AUB education, but are not yet fully prepared for its rigorous curriculum when they graduate from high school. 

Note that this publication is available in, both, English and Arabic languages 

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Research by Design and School Improvement: A Review of Literature – Jamila Mougharbil-2013

Research by Design and School Improvement: A Review of Literature 

Research by Design and School Improvement: A Review of Literature by Jamila Mugharbil
This paper is divided into three major sections. The first section deals with the topic of design-based research and is divided into the following six parts: 1) introduction; 2) basic characteristics of design-based research; 3) the process of design-based research; 4) design-based research versus other research methods; 5) methodological challenges with design-based research; and 6) status of the use of design-based research. The second part discusses school improvement and is divided into four parts: 1) introduction; 2) basic assumptions of school improvement approaches; 3) the process of educational change; and 4) principles for effective school improvement. The third and final section discusses the potential for the use of design-based research in the field of school improvement and presents a couple of research findings in this regard. 

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Current Trends of School Reform in the Arab World- Hammad Sioufi-2010

Arab states have realized the importance of reviewing the state of education in their countries, and seeking the ways to quantitatively and qualitatively promote and develop all the domains of education. However, the efforts to promote education did not sufficiently meet the aspirations set on them. In spite of noteworthy achievement in the quantitative expansion of education in Arab countries during the 20th century1, gaps still exist. Realizing that the issues and the problems of Arab education are interconnected and that it is possible formulate common solutions to them, the Arab leaders in their Khartoum Summit, called for a radical qualitative change in education and education policies, and to prepare a plan for the development of education in the Arab countries. With the help of educational experts and specialists and the support of specialized Arab and International organizations, a Plan ‘for the Development of Education in the Arab Countries’ (hereafter, the Plan) has been developed by the Secretariat General and adopted in the Tunis Summit 2008 for ten years (2008-2018). This paper presents a summary for the educational reform carried by five countries in the Arab region: Jordan, Morocco, Lebanon, Qatar, and Egypt.

 

Education System Quality Indicators – Dr. Karma El Hasan– 2008

Education System Quality Indicators by Dr. Karma El Hassan. 

Education systems in the world are vast organizations that are very complex to manage. They emerge over time and their formation and maintenance reflect differing historical traditions, cultural values and religious interests as well as divergent views about the role of the state in shaping the life-chances of its future citizens (Hoffman, Hoffman, Gray, & Daly, 2004.). The quest for higher performance through educational reform has been a worldwide phenomenon, especially over the last decade, and accordingly, the world witnessed a trend towards restructuring education systems. Most countries experienced a change in relationships between different levels of the system, or changes in the role of the state, or changed methods and models of managing the education system (Wallin, 1995). This paper outlined the major factors that have dominated the education reform movement in the last two decades in the Arab region. It further provided a conceptual framework for quality education, and presented different models emanating from this conceptual framework. Additionally, it elaborated on the indicators, their uses and types, and described some of indicator sets used for measuring education quality at system level. The paper concluded by highlighting the development of an indicators system, which is updated regularly, is essential for that purpose. Indicators are simple to implement, not very costly, and only political decision is needed to maximize the benefits of their use.  

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Lessons Learned from School-Based Reform- Dr. Raouf Ghusayni– 2008

Lessons Learned from School-Based Reform 

Lessons Learned from School-Based Reform by Dr. Raouf Ghusayni.
This paper presented an overview of school reform highlighting how there is no specific meaning attached to the concept of school-based management; however, it is generally agreed that it represents a shift of authority toward decentralization, identifies the school as the primary unit of educational change increased decision-making power to the school itself. The paper further highlighted Key Features of Successful Reform Strategies including teacher empowerment and school culture. It is generally acknowledged that teachers have often been isolated from involvement in significant decision making and from frequent and meaningful contact with one another. School-based management has afforded an opportunity for broader teacher involvement in decision–making on school policies and operations. However, it has been argued that reform initiatives are not likely to succeed unless they incorporate teachers’ participation in making decisions in areas that are specially important to them. Furthermore, several writers emphasize that school-based reform or restructuring does not in itself insure the success of reform initiatives. Beyond that, what is essential is the presence of a collaborative school culture 

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Quality Indicators in Schools -Rana Ismail - 2008

Quality Indicators in Schools 

Quality Indicators in Schools by Rana Ismail.
This paper provided an overview on quality indicators in education. This paper aimed specifically at describing the various interpretations of quality in school settings. Presenting a special focus on the nature of quality management as practiced and exploring to which extent it is applicable to educational settings and organizations. This paper concluded by proposing that the term quality is ever evolving. What was quality in the past is not quality today and what is quality today will not suffice as quality in the future. What remain constant in the definition, however, is the basic requirement of meeting the needs and thus satisfying the needs of beneficiaries of the school, and continuous improvement. Beneficiaries of the school system are the students, the parents or guardians of the students, and the community that the school serves. Nevertheless, what education has long needed is a tangible definition of how to measure the schools‟ educational program. Terminology and movements such as excellence, reform, or improvement have been dependent on arbitrary measures of indicators such as norm- referenced test scores, attendance percentages, dropout rates, or similar methods that are controversial. This is rightfully so because they are narrow instruments when compared to the broad scope of educational aims. They fail to significantly measure the effects of demographic, psychological, and sociological factors that are beyond the control of the school system. So the pertinent question is not whether schools need to go to learn about quality indicators, but how? Specifically, education needs to distinguish those quality practices in the manufacturing and service industries that can be adapted to education, and those that cannot. Then education must devise ways to implement and measure the practices that apply. Those practices will suffice as the quality indicators that schools should develop methods and instruments to consciously measure them; to keep the momentum of continuous improvement.

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Background Research on School Reform

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The Development and Implementation of the TAMAM Capacity Building Program

On going research

Journal Journal Articles and Books

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Factors Supporting or Hindering

On-going research

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