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Curriculum Reform WITHIN THE UAE

Abstract

This paper aims to look better at the UAE education system and how curriculum generally and English in particular has encountered different changes over the history of education because the announcement of the UAE Union in 1971. An intensive exploration as well as documents track will be listed and addressed. It had been really a risky objective for the writer to handle such a subject and investigate because of the insufficient resources and posted research documents. However, he experienced it was such a good chance to check out the education reform and list down what he came across right from the beginning of initiating the Ministry of Education up till the declaration of the new styles of some Emirates Education Councils. Throughout the whole process of the education reform, K to 12 programs, the training system has been seeking to ensure that UAE students are fully prepared to sign up for worldwide colleges and remain competitive in the global market. All of the education reform process has been targeted to rain the training standards in the united states so some of the world's best colleges are creating programs in the UAE, bringing in skilled students in the Arab world and globally. The main focus is with an unbiased learner and a worldwide education which enables UAE secondary institutions graduate students to become listed on international colleges and colleges without any prerequisites. The researcher performed everything possible to clarify the aims behind the procedure of the education reform and up to his knowledge everything are up to date.

Introduction

Education is considered to be the main element to numerous positive changes everywhere, it elevates countries and people to a high states no matter their backgrounds, color, nationalities, terms and or faith. Countries every once in awhile look back at their procedures and education system to evaluate for reforming, empowering and redirect them.

The UAE as a growing country with a tiny populace, has experienced different assays through importing intact education systems from the Arab world or incomplete successful ones from all over the world. Each one of these education reforms witnessed numerous learning from your errors endeavors wondering which one could bring a special cane that could revolutionize the whole education system and bring life and steadiness to it. Obviously all these attempts occurred across the history of the state education system which goes back the 70s of the prior century.

The county has attempted a unified education system leads by the Ministry of Education ( MoE) for 30 years which founded a systematic education but some emirates feel that it is time to allow them to try an individual tries that could release the strain off of the MoE and test some other methods that might be standardized across the whole state.

Historical background

The United Arab Emirates comprises seven emirates: Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajrnan, AI Fujairah, Um Elquin and Ras El Kheima. The Federation arrived to effect in Dec 1971. Before that, the seven emirates were ruled individually. The Constitution released in July 1971 interprets the nature of the politics and administrative system, as well as the circulation of authority between the judiciary, legislative and professional bodies.

Looking back again at the history of the formal education in the UAE we can see that it is relatively new. In the entire year 1952, there have been only few formal classes in the country. Between the season 1960s and 1970s a school building program trend was announced by expanding the training system and using a formal form of education in Sharjah, Dubai and Abu Dhabi. In the document posted by the UAE Embassy in USA, it is mentioned that nowadays education at routine one, cycle two and routine three is universal. In 2006-2007, about 650, 000 students were enrolled at 1, 256 public and private schools. About 60 percent of most students attend general public schools.

The same file also talked about that, education reform targets better preparation, increased accountability, higher specifications and improved professionalism. Furthermore, rote instruction has been replaced with more interactive varieties of learning, and English-language education is being integrated into other subject matter, such as math and knowledge. The Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC), the data and Human Development Authority (KHSA) and the UAE Ministry of Education are each tasked with education reform, while conserving local traditions, concepts and the social personal information of the UAE.

UAE Chief executive His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan set up ADEC in 2005 to develop education throughout the emirate of Abu Dhabi UAE. ADEC needs an entrepreneurial approach to involve the private sector, improve and modernize facilities, reduce bureaucracy, upgrade curricula and take benefit of it.

Successively, the emirate of Dubai announced the establishment of KHSA looks for to meet global expectations, concentrating on international accreditation and thorough quality guarantee programs. A recent initiative is designed to entice world-class international primary and secondary schools to Dubai.

The Ministry of Education advances and screens reform activities, with a give attention to standards-based, student-centered education. These work include a partnership with National Relationship of Elementary College Principals in america. Activities include:

Audits of every public university in the UAE

Evaluations of the system, from individual classes up through the Ministry

Ongoing professional development of professors and principals

The Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MHESR) is in charge of planning advanced schooling and research in UAE, as well for licensing and supervising private higher education institutions. MHESR also implements the policies of higher education approved by the Case. Both federal government and private advanced schooling institutions are operating in UAE.

The size of advanced schooling companies is not large, and a close supervision is accompanied by (MHESR). Accordingly, the results on the whole are quite reasonable.

By the year 2008, a fresh technique for education has been implemented. Next twenty years, the strategy will dwelling address all the obstacles of education, reshape the education system and try to ensure that the outcome of the training process suits the needs of globalization. Equally, training systems and policies have been examined by the worried parties. Excellence, creativeness, re-engineering, total quality management and similar concepts have been unveiled in working out programs. Competition between organizations (both people and private) for quality honours has been launched. Special attention is also being directed at preparatory training programs for university or college and school lawyers to be able to qualify for organizations' new intake. Moreover, to ensure the adoption of information technology, the overall Information Expert has been proven. The GIA is in charge of facilitating the introduction of it in the federal government organizations giving advice and training employees.

Challenges to Curriculum Development in the UAE

Samar Farah and Natasha Ridge explained in their Insurance plan Quick No. 16 Dec 2009 Curriculum Development Activities in the Ministry of Education. In the Ministry of Education (MOE), the Curriculum Office has a threefold role. 3 First, the Ministry is costed with providing "modern curriculum" in line with the second goal of the MOE 2008 - 2010 Strategic Plan, the facts of which are not prescribed. 4 Second, it reviews and approves textbook manuscripts every five years, which then become key resources for teachers in the class. Finally, it is responsible for the preparation and oversight of diagnosis and examinations. Unlike in the majority of OECD countries, there is absolutely no overarching curriculum report for the UAE which describes the curriculum

goals, requirements or content in its entirety. This record typically outlines the content and performance levels desired for students in each level and subject. 5 While subject syllabi exist

in the UAE, these are not utilized by teachers and are not easily available in colleges. The mandate to give a "modern curriculum" has resulted most recently in the 2007 introduction of the Madares Al Ghad (Academic institutions of Tomorrow). In specially picked schools, new British medium textbooks for English, research and math have been unveiled in order to both improve students' degrees of English and change the way in which these subject matter are taught and recognized.

Moreover, regardless of the benefits of more student-centered materials and textbooks in the classes in '09 2009, the lack of related reforms in diagnosis mechanisms has meant that professors often

return to the old teacher-centered, textbook motivated ways of coaching. Textbook revision and authorization is a five-year process carried out by the MOE. Up to now the most obvious changes have been the English language textbooks for most important students, in which the old UAE-produced texts were substituted with UAE Parade, which can be an version of the well known Stand 1: Curriculum within the UAE Context Kind of Curriculum Description Ministry of Education 2008-2010 Strategic Plan common national examinations subject matter syllabi school books (revised over a five-year basis by educational consultants and scholars in local universities) learner workbooks (laying out specifications, activities, strategies, expected final results and tools for educating and diagnosis) How educators teach What educators instruct - how content is shown - materials or pedagogical solutions used What students learn, based on: - results of end of year examinations (MOE) - Developments in International and Mathematics and Research Study (TIMSS) Designed,

Implemented and Attained series New Parade. These text messages accept the communicative way and feature a substantive teacher's guide, cassettes and other resources to help students learn English within an interactive and enjoyable way. Finally, the curriculum departments responsible for assessment. While this should create a natural synergy, whereby changes in textbooks (expected curriculum) lead to changes in teaching styles (integrated curriculum) and examinations (attained curriculum), it has not been the case. Examinations have maintained a heavy give attention to textbook memorization, and therefore discourage educators from embracing new university student centered methods to teaching. Other Influences on Curriculum Development Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research Typically, the Ministry of ADVANCED SCHOOLING and Scientific Research (MOHESR) would have little to no role in curriculum development at the institution level. However, in 2007 the MOHESR created the Common Educational Proficiency Examination (CEPA) for British in order to ascertain which students would be asked to take a groundwork calendar year (or two) to enhance their English dialect skills before coming into the public colleges, all of which conduct education in English. The original year saw a number of problems, including the poor preparation of teachers for the exam and a mismatch between the exam content and the content of the textbooks. To be able to address this problem, the Quality 12 British curriculum has since been modified to better represent the topics covered in the CEPA exam. The CEPA was eventually also launched for Mathematics, and in 2009 2009 it was released for Arabic. It'll therefore continue steadily to have some impact on what students learn in these content in Class 12, as it is compulsory for individuals who wish to type in one of the three consumer higher education organizations in the UAE (UAE School, The Higher Universities of Technology, and Zayed School) to cross the exam.

Abu Dhabi Education Council Since the establishment of the Abu Dhabi Educational Council (ADEC) in 2005, it's been at the forefront of curriculum development in the UAE. Most recently it has developed a new curriculum predicated on outcomes, or standards, rather than textbooks, in appointment with an arm of the brand new South Wales Federal government, Australia. This British medium curriculum in Abu Dhabi has been developed for Science, IT, and Health insurance and Physical Education for marks K-9, for English for grades K-12, and for Math for levels K-10. As in the Madares Al Ghad, the focus of the new curriculum is to increase the English vocabulary skills of the students so that they avoid a time-consuming basis year upon access into college or university. However, it is more extensive as it will involve a fresh standards-based curriculum which is educated by a large number of local English-speaking teachers. The new ADEC curriculum can be an important move away from reliance on the textbook as the only real transmitter of curriculum content. It places more focus on critical thinking and problem solving skills somewhat than memorization. At this time, the curriculum has been examined in the Model universities and People Private Collaboration (PPP) universities. 8 If successful, the new curricula might eventually be executed in all administration schools in the Emirate and eventually in all federal schools across the country.

Challenges and Recommendations

While the development of the new standards centered curriculum in Abu Dhabi can be an important step of progress in bettering the curriculum in the UAE, you may still find many issues which may have not been resolved. The main troubles that lie in advance include transforming the attitudes and methods of teachers, extending the opportunity of the curriculum content, and designing appropriate evaluation strategies. Finally, local capacity must be broadened to be able to ensure sustainability and suitability in curriculum reform. Transforming Teaching To guarantee the successful implementation of the new curriculum, a radically different way of thinking and approach is required. Moving away from a textbook-driven curriculum to one in which instructors need to plan what and how they will teach, drawing from a number of options, will entail retraining professors on the basics of teaching. The type of training required will need to lengthen beyond pedagogical experience - the transmitting of knowledge - to incorporate reflective dimensions, permitting teachers to separately develop instructional materials. This will demand more interval training and better follow-up than currently is present. The Ministry of Education composition incorporates supervisors for every subject matter whose role is to go to teachers and see lessons to determine the grade of teaching. Presently, the role of the supervisor is marginal as principals can pick their supervisors; that is, they can choose those who'll be most amenable to supplying a good survey. In case the role of the supervisor was strengthened and improved upon, this would likely have a confident impact on scholar learning. Within their study of Cuba's education system, Carnoy et al. (2007) found that guidance and mentoring enjoyed a critical role in guaranteeing quality of teaching, if used effectively. The UAE should be no different. Unfortunately, many professors are improbable to

substantially change their habit unless they are given with incentives to do so. The current system will not reward student centered teaching, which is unlikely to improve unless there can be an insistence upon a change in professor styles. Expanding Curriculum Content The Ministry of Education's recent announcement of the overhaul of the physical education curriculum to provide more education time, as well as better facilities, is a great part of the route of expanding the scope of school content. 10 However, more positive steps have to be taken with regard to other subject matter such as artwork and music, both which never have been given enough importance in the national curriculum so far. According to the Knowledge and Human being Development Authority's (KHDA) Dubai Schools Inspection Bureau, music is not offered after Quality 6, and artwork is not offered after Level 9, except to a few students who choose to follow them as extracurricular activities. 11 Theories of cognition claim that activities in the arts (visual arts, music, theater and dance) create functions or motivations that arrive in non-arts capabilities. In a very cross-country comparability of the subjects and respective training time offered in levels 7-9, it is notable that the UAE places a greater emphasis on math and vocabulary education than the OECD countries, like the top two scoring countries on the Program for International University student Diagnosis (PISA) - Finland and Korea. 13 Benavot (2006) argues that trend is prevalent generally in most countries over the Midsection East, Africa and South Asia, whereas the OECD countries allocate relatively more time to aesthetic and physical education. 14 Regardless of the heavy time allocation to these topics in the UAE, students continue to be weak in mathematics (see Dubai's leads to the 2007 TIMSS) and poor in English, indicating that simply having more time in a subject is not enough to see test report gains. Another neglected content area in the UAE is Information and Computer Technology (ICT). Currently this comprises an individual subject where students learn obsolete computing skills, often on obsolete machines. In Finland, however, technology is no more offered just as 4 Desk 2: Percentage of Education Time by Subject matter in Grades 7-9

Native Language, Math, Science, Community Studies, Foreign language, Technology, Arts, Music, Physical Education, Religion, Vocational skills, Other Electives Source: Eduardo Andere, "Comprehensive Education Beyond your United States, " Why We're Behind: What Top Nations Teach Their Students But We Don't (Common Center, 2009). individual subject in the curriculum. Instead, the federal government has successfully integrated ICT across the national curriculum, making a "digital learning" environment. This initiative is currently being replicated around the world. 15 To achieve similarly effective change in the UAE would require instructors to receive further training on the use of ICT for instructional purposes, and a change in the ICT syllabus, which is currently not functional or highly relevant to real-life demands. Overall, the UAE curriculum is thin and includes fewer things and subject areas than the best performing countries on the planet. UAE schools fail to offer vocational skills training or any elective themes - such as home economics, environmental knowledge or business studies. The UAE may possibly also benefit from diversifying its extra level curricular offerings and lengthening its institution week. Currently, it's estimated that UAE colleges have roughly 22. 5 time of instruction per week, compared to the international average of 27 time weekly. 16 Extending the institution day would enable the broadening of the curriculum. Assessment Strategies

To encourage impartial thinking and improve problem dealing with skills, students need to be assessed on how they apply discovered skills to new situations. That is lacking in the prevailing examination and analysis structures, also called the obtained curriculum. Exams currently require students

to provide only limited replies and do not present students' weaknesses clearly, going out of them with incomplete feedback on the progress. Reforms need to be completed at the national level to ensure more systematic and rigorous assessment. The existing decentralized method of examinations,

in which the MOE office in each emirate develops its examinations, apart from grade 12, is difficult due to the small size of the general public school system. Somewhat, the creation of a single examination system for many end-of-year examinations would assist the MOE in evaluating academic

achievement in institutions across emirates to ascertain which classes are undertaking well and which are not. This, subsequently, would enable classes to implement tracking procedures for the improvement of students, whereby educators could identify where students are falling behind and exactly how they can work jointly to help the students to boost their work. Creating Sustainable and Ideal Curriculum Reform Functions The final concern that lies in advance for the UAE is the one that holds larger political and economic outcomes for the united states. It is the challenge of creating a national body that is able to develop and revise the countrywide curriculum. This body needs to be comprised of local experts who are able to produce and review suggested curriculum changes. The Ministry of Education and the Abu Dhabi Education Council have both relied closely on foreign expertise to spearhead their curriculum development initiatives. Though it is straightforward in the short term to transfer consultants who tend to be experienced in the field, such a situation is unsustainable in the long run, as it leaves Emirati nationals and experts excluded from the process and, therefore, without the required skills to develop curricula. Through decreasing its reliance on external knowledge and providing better education and training for nationals and home grown up experts, the UAE comes with an opportunity to build local convenience of developing curriculum. This technique needs to get started with the UAE being more careful when "borrowing" curricula reforms from in another country. So far the UAE has depended seriously on experience from america and Australia, that it imports nearly all its curriculum. However, both countries are relatively vulnerable performers in the TIMSS and PISA assessments. In fact, US students lag behind Finland by approximately two full grades in mathematics and research. Therefore, in the pursuit of an improved, more encompassing curriculum the UAE might need to explore the opportunity of learning from the experience of other countries, like the top-scoring PISA and TIMSS performers, Korea and Finland. Concerns about lack of national identity are also an important reason the UAE requires its own curriculum expert. Nowhere is nationwide identity more obviously defined than through the public school curriculum. External consultants cannot grasp the needs of the country, its perspective, its goals, and its moral foundations. That is illustrated in recent concerns that have been increased about the shift to using British as a medium of training in the Madares Al Ghad Universities, whereby parents and National National Council (FNC) people have expressed anxieties over a decrease in children's command word of Arabic. 18 Many also felt resentful of the spanish and a foreign curriculum being enforced upon Emirati children. If there was more local involvement in curriculum development, several problems could be diminished or mitigated. Bottom line It really is undeniable that providing the appropriate curriculum in institutions is vital to creating a era of progressive and skilled residents. To that end, the curriculum must be conceptualized in holistic terms as more than just what should be trained but also as how it has been taught and evaluated. Without a detailed procedure, curriculum development will continue to be understood solely in terms of textbook development. In case a wider view of curriculum is embraced, fundamental issues such as offering

constructive tutor training, broadening the scope of curriculum content, utilizing effective analysis strategies and investing in long-term local capacity to develop curriculum would definitely bring sustained and important change to the educational system in the UAE.

References

Assaad, R. et al. (2000) "THE RESULT of Child Work on University Enrollment in Egypt", Economic Research Forum (ERF), Working Newspaper Series 0111, Cairo, Egypt.

Christopher, J. (1997) "Is High School Employment Consumption or Investment?", Journal of Labor Economics, vol. 15, no. 4, pp. 735-76.

Coleman, J. (1984) "The Transition from College to Work. ", Research in Stratification and Mobility 3:27-59.

Farnsworth, M. (2003) "Equal Opportunity and Youngsters Employment", International Centre for Research on Women (ICRW), Working Paper

Globalization, education and Emiratisation: A study of the United Arab Emirates

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